Cable, Wisconsin —The U.S. Adventure Racing Association (USARA) National Championship is coming to Wisconsin for the first time ever in 2021.

Now in its 22nd year, the USARA National Championship is the premier amateur adventure racing event in the United States. From September 10 to 11, the best teams in the United States will trek, bike, and paddle nonstop in a quest to find remote checkpoints, navigating with just a map and compass, with the goal of completing as much of a secret course as they can in under 30 hours, with the goal of earning the title of national champions.

Teams of three will compete in one of the following divisions: all-female, all-male, master’s (all competitors over 45 years of age by race day), and the mixed (co-ed) division, considered the sport’s premier division. Defending national champion Quest Racing from Bellingham, Washington, and 2017 and 2018 national champion Rootstock Racing, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, will be among the 57 teams lining up at the start of this year’s race, which includes participants from 39 U.S. states.

Race director Paula Waite, the president of Hayward, Wisconsin-based 180 Adventure, has more than 20 years of experience as a racer and race director, and is excited to showcase the famous trails, woods, and lakes of the Northwoods Region of Wisconsin on the national stage. The group’s annual events, the Stubborn Mule Adventure Race and Stubborn Fool Adventure Race, have set participants’ expectations high due to their reputation for being challenging, especially in the technical discipline of orienteering, which involves off-trail, compass-based navigation through highly technical terrain.

“We at 180 Adventure prioritize the racers’ experience over everything else. We are eager to share the hidden gems of this wilderness wonderland with the adventure racing community in September 2021,” Waite said.

Entry for this year’s race were completed via a hybrid system due to the cancelation of last year’s event. Teams who had a top finish in a qualifying event in 2020 were able to roll over their entry to 2021. Additional teams qualified based on a national ranking system, and a limited number of entries were specially reserved for Wisconsin-based teams.

This will be the first in-person USARA National Championship Race since USARA Executive Director Michael Garrison took over leadership of the association in 2020. Last year’s national championship event, which had been set to take place in Wisconsin in September 2020, was canceled due to the COVID-19 epidemic.

“We are excited to have the adventure race community reunite in Wisconsin for an epic celebration,” USARA Executive Director Mike Garrison said. “Of course, the teams will also have a grueling 30 hours of non-stop racing in the woods.”

Survival expert and extreme television personality Bear Grylls has called adventure racing the “world’s toughest sport.” USARA encourages Wisconsin media outlets to catch the country’s best teams in action in the Badger State and see why adventure racing is experiencing a surge of popularity both in the U.S. and globally.

U.S. Adventure Racing Association contact: Michael Garrison, Executive Director, garrison@usara.com, 317-456-2112

180 Adventure Contact: Paula Waite, 180 Adventure, pawaite@gmail.com, 608-234-0625

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About the USARA

Now a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, the United States Adventure Racing Association has been the primary national governing body for the sport of adventure racing since its inception in 1998. USARA supports race organizers and promoters in developing safe, challenging, and fun events for adventurers at all levels of the sport. Since its founding, USARA has helped to organize more than 2,500 national events across the U.S.A. The production of the USARA Adventure Race National Championship – run annually since 1999 – and the USARA national ranking system have aimed to provide a venue for determining the top teams in the country.

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