I received an email from a Russian fellow from a company called ‘Expedition’. They organise an event called ‘Expedition Trophy’. It’s along the lines of a Camel Trophy or Dakar event in that it is a driving expedition – 17,000km across Russia in two weeks. The event starts on 23 February 2013 and wraps up on 8 March 2013. It’s a winter race.
Although this isn’t our usual ‘adventure racing’ type thing it caught my eye primarily because it looks cool, includes ‘sports sections’ and takes place in Russia. I’ve only been to Russia once and I absolutely loved it; the vibe, the people, the mountains… I was made to feel so very welcome.
This company, Expedition, is a big multi-national company. They operate in many countries including the UK, Emirates (Dubai), Poland, Serbia and the US. They’ve got 360 retail stores that sell everything needed for a successful expedition; they have their own restaurants that serve northern cuisine (delicacies and natural food) and; this is where Expedition Trophy comes in – they organise various events.
Expedition Trophy 2013 is an on- & off-road rally. The 17,000 kilometre route goes from Murmansk (North of St Petersburg) to Vladivostok, total around 17,000 kilometres. Bojan Dimitrijevic, from Expedition, says that the event is much like Camel Trophy and Dakar, but more adventurous, exciting and inspiring.
“We abstract from the usual race concept and go deeper into peoples experience and emotions. We offer an opportunity to see Russia from inside out, all of it, it’s beauties and amazing sceneries. During the way, contestants will cross many stages and see historical and just beautiful places of interest.”
As far as entries go, there’s a 6-person team (at least one woman) category – two race vehicles. Entry is USD $6,000. Entrants can do either the full route or only some of the stages. Here’s a tantalising proposition from the event organisers: if a team enters the full route of the race (including competing in all sports sections of the race) and if they complete the route from Murmansk to Vladivostok, the organisers will refund the registration fee IN FULL!
The only tricky part to this event is that teams have to provide their own race cars and if they want assistance crews and support vehicles they’ll have to organise these too. I’m sure the organisers have local contacts for vehicle hire.
This is an annual event so while the time may be too short to get over there now for this year’s event, you may want to follow it online this year and diarise for next year.
Bojan sent this link to a promo video.