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Check out the various volunteer opportunities on island or sea during the race and help support our beneficiary partner, The Travis Mills Foundation, a Maine retreat for combat veterans and families. At the conclusion of the race, take part in the festivities at the Peaks Island Lions Club finish line venue to a complimentary BBQ.
On April 10, 2012, United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne was critically injured on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan by an IED (improvised explosive device) while on patrol, losing portions of both legs and both arms. He is one of only five quadruple amputees from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to survive his injuries. His foundation is creating a national retreat to help veteran families unite with the land, water, nature and each other to revitalize themselves and to keep moving forward. The retreat will be uniquely designed to provide state-of-the-art “smart home” technology in a relaxed lodge setting. It will fill a vital role in recovery, camaraderie, spousal support, re-connection, and reintegration. Veteran families from all over the United States will enjoy a week of swimming, boating, fishing, site-seeing, campfires, adaptive sports, and much more.We are honored to be associated with the Travis Mills Foundation as our Official Beneficiary Organization. Take a moment through the image link below to acquaint yourself with this selfless American hero who lives every day by the inspiration....“Never give up. Never quit.” Following the 2016 event, USA SwimRun was pleased to contribute $10,000 to the foundation, and we look forward to increasing the 2017 award.
In conjunction with this announcement, 10 Travis Mills Foundation Team slots will be available. The first 10 teams that will contribute $1,000 to the Travis Mills Foundation will be awarded a guaranteed team slot in the August 13, 2017 event. For 2016, 125 team slots were filled in less than three weeks from among more than 600 applications for the race. Interested teams should consult the site for rules and qualifying standards that must apply with respect to open water swimming capabilities.
Inspired by the preeminent, international swimrun race series OTILLO ("island to island), originating in Sweden in 2006, two multisport veterans looking for the next adventure are pleased to once again present in 2017 the ONLY "OTILLO- style" swimrun event in North America. Consisting of multiple, alternating swim and overland running legs (island roads, trails, and shoreline scrambles) between several islands in Portland, Maine’s spectacular Casco Bay, SwimRun will test competitors with run legs across varied island island terrain and several miles of open water swimming. For 2017, a Long Course event is in the works for approximately 5 miles of open water swimming and nearly 15 miles of overland routing over 10 islands. A simultaneous Short Course event for newcomers will consist of approximately 2.25 miles of swimming and 6.5 miles of overland racing over 4 islands.
Remaining true to the originators of the OTILLO, Casco Bay Islands Swimrun is a two-person team event. Not a relay, teamates must race the entire course together. Rules permit swim aids such as hand paddles, pull buoys, wetsuits and even swim fins to name a few. Certain safety gear is mandated by race rules and hydration and race fuel can be carried too, but what one starts with, so too must they finish. Changing from trail shoes to swim fins, or tending to awkward gear can chew up valuable time. Having the right teammate and equipment can make all the difference
A WORD OF ADVICE - Being honest about your open water swimming skills will be the key to your joy or disappointment on race day. Please carefully consider if the Long Course is for you. It will entail dealing with tidal currents, possible wind, surface chop and ocean swells over nearly 5 miles of swimming, and require you to be competent with sighting skills in locating landing zones that may not be immediately apparent on an opposite shore. At least two "hard stop" check points will be located within the long course that must be reached within an established time frame. Failing to do so will disqualify your team from continuing onward. Race management will identify teams that will not be permitted to complete the race at that point and return DQ'd teams to the finish venue as resources become available. You NEED TO BE A STRONG AND CONFIDENT OPEN WATER SWIMMER able to contend with a very dynamic environment in order to compete successfully in the Long Course event. Wetsuits covering the full torso and upper thighs at a minimum are MANDATORY.
Following the November 7 application deadline, race organizers will select a limited number of Long Course teams that have chosen "Elite" status consideration. Their endurance/adventure racing resume will be evaluated as a basis for their team to be awarded a slot. All remaining and general entry Long Course applications will then be pooled for a random lottery selection. All applications for Short Course selection will be pooled in the same manner. TO QUALIFY FOR THE SELECTION PROCESS, TEAMS MUST SUBMIT THEIR APPLICATION FOR 2 DISTINCT MEMBERS. ANY "TEAM" ENTRY WITH ONLY ONE MEMBER WILL BE DROPPED AND NOT INCLUDED IN THE ORDERING. Teams will be awarded slots on December 15. On January 1, all selected teams will be required to submit their team entry fee ($650 for Long Course, $450 for Short) to confirm their team slot. Failing to do so by January 9 will forfeit the team slot, and it will roll down to the next ordered team.
Hopefuls are encouraged to visit the official OTILLO website and the Official Film: OTILLO 2015 The Swimrun World Championship to learn more about this challenging event and gain insight on optimal gear selection. Casco Bay Islands SwimRun is produced by USA SwimRun LLC.
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