AS PART of its
continuing commitment to the outdoors and support of active-lifestyle enthusiasts,
Subaru of America, Inc. proudly sponsored the first expedition-length adventure
race in the United States, Subaru Primal Quest. Developed by and for adventure racers,
the event took place July 7-16 in Telluride, Colorado in conjunction with the Telluride
360° Adventure Festival, which was also sponsored by the company.
Coed, four-person teams of endurance athletes from eight different countries covered more than 250 miles of the brutal backcountry of Colorados San Juan Mountains. The racers competed 24 hours a day in a variety of disciplines, including mountain biking, kayaking, rappelling, trekking and mountaineering. The purse for the event was $250,000 twice the amount of any other adventure race.
Mother Nature certainly made her presence known to the participants. Less than an hours drive from the race site, a forest fire engulfed thousands of acres of forest. The fire did not pose a threat to the teams, but the dry air and smoke did make it more difficult for them to breathe throughout the course.
In the end, New Zealands SoBe/Smartwool team took the top honors, claiming the top prize of $100,000 by finishing in 74 hours and 12 minutes. Second place went to Team Montrail with a time of 79:41 and third went to Team GoLite who finished in 83:17. In an extraordinary achievement, Team Subaru finished in eighth place overall.
Of the events original 62 teams, 48 completed the adventure. The race officially ended when Team El Dorado crossed the finish line on July 16. In the end, 36 ranked teams finished the races full course, 23 teams dropped out or continued unranked, and three teams finished the short course.
Subaru Primal Quest was televised on Outdoor Life Network, which broadcasted three hours of coverage to more than 45 million homes across the United States.