Team Tahoe ends up in 25th place at Primal Quest |

Team Tahoe ends up in 25th place at Primal Quest

Chad Sellmer, Tribune staff writer

“It was tough for us to work together as a team to keep each other moving at 2, 3, 4 o’clock in the morning,” said Scott Bower of Team Tahoe after his team finished 25th in the 400-mile Subaru Primal Quest adventure race.

Sleep depravation is a big factor in multi-discipline, multi-day events like the second-annual Primal Quest, Bower noted.

“That was a very tough challenge for us and not something you can really train for,” he said. “We lost a lot of time for that because we ended up taking more power naps than we might have needed but we just couldn’t move forward anymore. We didn’t cross the river because we were falling all over each other so we waited a day. It was the smart thing to stop before possible injury.”

Team Tahoe, formed in June to compete as the “local team” in the extreme endurance event, arrived via kayak at Lakeside Beach behind Harrah’s at 5:48 a.m. Saturday in 25th place overall.

“That was so great. We were psyched,” said Primal Quest public relations director Gordon Wright. “I thought it was a huge effort on their part.”

This was the first multi-day event for Team Tahoe, which consisted of Bower of Truckee, Matt Anderson of Reno and Tim and Jessica Farrar of Washoe Valley.

“They were looking to have a local team from around this area and we qualified for this event June 21-22 at a Cal-Eco 24-hour race in Yosemite,” Bower said. “There were two other teams from the area and we went farther than the other two so we got a free entry.”

Bower said the cold nights presented a challenge, but not as much as the cold water crossings. The final race to the finish was hampered by wind and waves and the team was late coming in.

“Obviously we had some cold nights but we seemed to hit a lot of areas early in the morning,” he said. “It was colder in the river or flat water. The last leg took us eight hours because there were five-foot swells on the lake. We waited on the shore for awhile and it didn’t subside. They even sent someone out to look for us. We had friends and family waiting there at 2 a.m. and we came in about four hours later.

“Overall the race was fantastic and we were very happy with our performance,” he added. “As a group we just met before the June race and none of us had multi-day race experience so we were very excited to finish 25th and we learned so much along the way.”

Wright said the trial of the teams was evident at the Sunday night party at Harrah’s.

“You’d have thought it was a bunch of P.O.W.s celebrating,” he joked. “

Forty-eight teams ended up finishing the competition of the more than 70 that left the South Shore starting line Sept. 5.

“That’s just about the right finishing ratio for a race of this magnitude,” he said. “You want people to finish but at the same time you had to earn it and those teams that finished certainly did.”

The first coed team to cross the finish and win the $100,000 grand prize was Nike ACG/Balance Bar at 2:13 a.m. last Wednesday.

The non-stop, 24-hour endurance event involved a combination of caving, mountain biking, hiking, rappelling, white-water paddling, flat-water paddling, night navigation, road biking and orienteering.

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