Paramotor race across America kicks off
This week sees the launch of the Icarus Trophy, a 1,300km unsupported paramotor flight in the USA
They organise some of the craziest adventure races on the planet. From the Mongol Rally, a beat-up car race across Mongolia to the Rickshaw Run, a terrifying 3,500km race across India in glorified three-wheeled lawnmowers, the Adventurists have been “striving to make the world less boring” since 2004 – with some success.
The latest race to launch is a paramotor race from Eatonville near Seattle, to Valley Springs, CA. It starts on October 12. Unlike the Red Bull X-Alps, there is no selection, and the 25-strong field of pilots reflects that. The lineup includes a mix of adventurers, crazy characters, bored office workers and even some who have some paramotoring experience.
The Adventurists take ‘no rules’ to a new limit. Although there are officially two support vehicles following the race, athletes have to be entirely self-supported.
Says Tom Morgan, founder of the Icarus Trophy and the Adventurists: “It sort of dawned on me that you didn't need a license, and you could kind of take off from anywhere and they run on ordinary petrol. And then I thought f*** me! That is the best way of flying around places I have ever heard of. It seemed to me to be unbelievable that no-one had already organised a long distance paramotor adventure like this. So then we had to.”
Race manager and referee Shane Denherder, Owner of Team Fly Halo, says: “One thing we realized a few days into the recce is that the Icarus Trophy will be as much about diplomacy as it is about flying skill. Being able to charm the pants off of a landowner to talk them into assisting you is going to be the skill that pays the bills. That, and being able to launch your kit in less-than-ideal conditions without breaking it.”
The race is expected to take between seven and ten days. For updates head over to The Adventurists. We look forward to watching from a safe distance.