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Nation’s largest adventure racing series selects Knoxville to host 2013 Championship

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Nation’s largest adventure racing series selects Knoxville to host 2013 Championship

From l to r: Peter Jolles, Checkpoint Tracker; Mayor Tim Burchett, Knox County; Commissioner Mike Brown, Knox County (back); Vice Mayor Nick Pavlis, City of Knoxville (back); Councilman Finbarr Saunders, City of Knoxville (back); Mayor Madeline Rogero, City of Knoxville; Carol Evans, Legacy Parks Foundation

Knoxville, Tenn. — Today, officials with Legacy Parks Foundation, the City of Knoxville and Knox County Government announced that up to 200 of the best adventure racers in North America will come together in Knoxville on Thursday, Oct. 10 through Saturday, Oct. 12 to compete for the 2013 Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Racing Championship.  Checkpoint Tracker is the nation’s largest competitive adventure racing series with sanctioned events and six divisions across the country and includes the annual season-ending Checkpoint Tracker Championship.

Checkpoint Tracker boasts the largest online community of active adventure racers in North America with more than 10,000 active members.  The championship is slated to bring the most accomplished group of adventure race enthusiasts to Knoxville.

According to Peter Jolles, course director of Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Racing, adventure racing, commonly described as a long distance, endurance competition traditionally involves the combination of two or more “human-powered” outdoor sporting disciplines, including but not limited to orienteering, trail running, trekking, mountain biking, white or flat-water paddling, rappelling/ascending, river boarding and swimming.

“The goal is for racers to complete a designated course in a pre-determined amount of time while transporting all of their gear, food and water with no outside assistance,” said Jolles.  “The diversity of these activities and format make it fun and challenging for the competitors, but also shine a light on how important and difficult it is to find the right location for an adventure racing event.”

“When we met with Legacy Parks Foundation, the State of Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and Ackermann PR and therefore saw what Knoxville had to offer, we knew we’d found exactly what we were looking for as the ideal host city for our 2013 championship,” said Paul Angell, president of Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Racing. “Knoxville offers the amenities, accommodations and quick access to the terrain that we need, and provides a compelling urban setting for a fun, high-energy, outdoor event.  By leveraging the surrounding mountains, rivers and forests, we’ve been able to design a championship-caliber course worthy of the best adventure racers on the North American continent.”

During Knoxville’s 2013 Checkpoint Tracker Championship, individuals, two-person and four-person, co-ed and same sex teams will be required to navigate a 100-mile, non-stop course by map and compass from checkpoint to checkpoint in under 30 hours, explains Jolles.  Scheduled activities will include trekking, caving, orienteering, mountain biking, paddling, rappelling, ascending and a mystery; the first team to the finish line with the most checkpoints will be declared the 2013 Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Racing champions.

“Bringing the 2013 Checkpoint Tracker Championship to Knoxville is a big win for our area,” said Carol Evans, executive director of Legacy Parks Foundation.  “Through this event, we’ll reach some of the world’s premier adventure racers thus enabling them to experience the uniqueness of the Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness and beyond.”

According to Evans, for less intense adventure racers, the championship weekend will also include the Checkpoint Tracker Adventure Challenge which is a 20-30 mile course utilizing Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness and designed to be completed in six hours or less. Scheduled activities for the Challenge will include trail running, mountain biking, orienteering and paddling, and there will be a set course with no navigation skills or GPS required.

“Over the past year and a half, and under the leadership of those actively involved with the promotion of Legacy Parks Foundation, Outdoor Knoxville and Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness, Knoxville has made great strides in positioning itself as one of Tennessee’s premier destinations for outdoor adventure enthusiasts, said Susan Whitaker, Commissioner of the State of Tennessee’s Department of Tourist Development, who was unable to attend the announcement but contributed comments.

For more information or to register for the 2013 Checkpoint Tracker Championship, visit http://www.checkpointtracker.com/events/checkpoint-tracker-championship. A full schedule of the weekend’s events will be released later this summer.

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About Checkpoint Tracker:

Checkpoint Tracker is a national adventure racing series offering rankings in six divisions and an annual championship. It includes the largest online community of adventure racers in North America, a web application for racers, teams and promoters and a mobile application for fans.

About Legacy Parks Foundation:

Legacy Parks Foundation is a Knoxville-based non-profit actively working to make East Tennessee a recreational destination of the Southeast. During the past five years, Legacy Parks Foundation has raised more than $3 million for parks, greenways and recreational venues, added more than 200 acres of parkland to Knox County and helped protect nearly 1,000 acres of farm and forestland in East Tennessee.

Media: For high-resolution digital images, interviews or additional information, contact Erin Freeman at (865) 584-0550 or efreeman@ackermannpr.com.

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