With four athletes in the the 2015 Red Bull X-Alps, the USA is well represented this year! While we are technically competing against each other, we realize that flying skills and physical strength will determine our ability to finish the race, and that is a solo effort. Since we are all at a disadvantage because the Alps are a long way from where we live, we have decided to work together and share information to allow us to all go further in the race.
With our busy schedules, it was amazing that all four athletes were able to find a way to get together for a whole weekend in Utah. Honza Rejmanek, Gavin McClurg, Dave Turner and I all met for the first time, ready to share info and see just what we were getting into with this race. Since it was raining and snowing all weekend, we weren't tempted to fly....! We looked at maps, talked strategy, checkout the route in Google Earth, looked at maps again, and asked all the questions of Honza we could think of. While Dave, Gavin and I are race rookies, this will be Honza's fifth time doing the X-Alps, so he could answer a lot of our questions easily. I think we all felt we got some great info from each other and we look forward to meeting again in Salzburg!
The Foundation for Free Flight was having their annual meeting in SLC that weekend. So along with race planning, we were able to thank the Foundation for their generous donation to each of us to cover our travel expenses for the X-Alps. Thanks again to Tony Lang, Matt Beechinor, and the Foundation for Free Flight for their efforts to raise money for the USA Paragliding Team!