“We entered our season having set high goals and now at the end of the season looking back we are pleased that we accomplished almost all of them. We wanted to have as close to an unbeaten season as possible and we accomplished that.
We won every race that we entered except to those being a third place at the South African expedition in May but we felt very good about our finish having lost to Seagate and Silva despite a bike crash and torn bicep tendon and labrum that ultimately would require surgery for Garret, and keep him out of the World Championships.
We knew that with a few little tweaks of the team we would be able to compete with anyone. This was also the very first race for the four of us together after some replacements this year from some teammates who were taking a timeout. We knew that if we shored up some small weaknesses and tweaked a few things heading into the World Championships in Ecuador that this team would have a very good shot at making the podium.
Unfortunately this was the year that our team had to deal with another variable that we don’t have to very much and that’s serious injuries. Garret, Jason and Abby all suffered serious injuries that required surgery or multiple surgeries and as a result Jason had to replace Garret at the World Championships but this didn’t seem to hinder us very much and our team recovered well and entered the World Championships with a 7 race winning streak. We also successfully defended our national championships that we won in 2013 and we were happy about that. We also successfully defended all of the races where we were the defending champion being the Dawn to Dusk adventure race in California, the Cowboy Tough expedition race in Wyoming and the United States Adventure Racing Association National Championships. At the Cowboy Tough expedition race we beat team Columbia Vidaraid who are ranked #2 in the world so we felt very good going into the world championships that our team could compete with anyone.
During the World Championships just like everyone we faced adversity and after making fairly big mistake early that put us fairly far back from the lead our team still kept the faith, remain composed and decided to put the hammer down and race as hard as they could to the finish line and see what happens.
As we all know anything can happen in Adventure Racing, sometimes you can get complacent and just shuffle to the finish line forgetting that it’s a race. I was really proud to see that the team never forgot that they were racing and as a result we came storming back from 7th place in the final 30 minutes of the World Championships in Ecuador to beat Team France to the finish line and take a very respectable 4th place.
2 of our team members Kyle and Mari still have a one day AR race in Malaysia on December 14th and then we will officially have about a month of off season to be able to let our bodies recover, and rest and then will we will be back at it again looking forward to a competitive 2015. We will do some of the same races that we did this year opting not to go to South Africa after two years there, and we will do more races within North America as there are two new qualifiers being Cowboy Tough and Expedition Alaska. Our season will heavily focus on hopefully going for the win in Brazil at the World Championships. We really are setting our sights on that one particular race and will be putting all of our efforts towards that and we are looking forward to seeing how it plays out. Our current team members are Kyle Peter, Rob Preston, Garret Bean, Jason Popilsky, Abby Broughton, and Mari Chandler.”
Info and pictures:
Tecnu Team and Douglas Judson