Duo thrives in Urban City Chase

Any other Mitsubishi Motors City Chase and the duo of Tom McKay and Martina Zamecnik are going for victory.

Tom Mckay and Martina Zamecnik carry this person during a fire fighter’s drill as quickly as they can during the Vancouver City Chase.

Tom Mckay and Martina Zamecnik carry this person during a fire fighter’s drill as quickly as they can during the Vancouver City Chase.

Any other Mitsubishi Motors City Chase and the duo of Tom McKay and Martina Zamecnik are going for victory.

However, during the Vancouver City Chase championship on Aug. 27, they tried something different.

“We wanted to come in top 10 and we were totally confident we were going to come in top 10,” said McKay, who with Zamecnik make up the Jack the Bear Jets. “We were a little bit more relaxed doing this race because we weren’t putting ourselves under pressure.”

The approach worked as they placed fourth clocking in at 4:05:32, just 32 seconds from finishing third. A total of 500 teams competed in that event.

McKay and Zamecnik completed fire fighters drill, quad running through an obstacle course, stand up paddle boarding, or a portion of an army bootcamp, as well as intellectual and skill challenges.

“I enjoy the anxiety and being under pressure and having to perform,” he said, adding that it’s regular people looking for an adventure who compete in these events. “Not knowing what’s going to happen. I enjoy the competition, it’s quite stiff when you get into these races.”

The race has teams of two going to different locations in the city solving clues and trying to reach as many check points as quickly as possible. The website (www.mitsubishicitychase.com) states that to conquer this four to six-hour urban event, teams will run, walk and use public transit to navigate their way throughout the city. They can call family and friends for help, accessing the Internet, and employ assistance of strangers.

“It’s modeled after the Amazing Race but its done in one city, in one day,” said McKay. “It’s a lot of fun. It’s very physically demanding but also very intellectually demanding.”

During the final check-point, McKay was harnessed and had to pull a car by ropes while Zamecnik was steering the car in an oval course designed in a parking lot.

“That totally burnt my legs out,” he said, as that followed him racing for three-and-a-half hours and running around Vancouver.

The two travelled 33 kilometres, 15-km by foot as they went to locations such as Jericho Beach, parks and fire stations. A goal of the city chase is to raise money for Right to Play, which helps kids in disadvantaged parts of world get involved in sports. The national championship will be in Halifax, NS on Oct. 1 in which the winning team will receive two cars. Earning a spot in that championship is a motivator for McKay and Zamecnik.

The duo also competed in the Kelowna event and placed second finishing in 3:34:55.

“It’s our goal to become the best urban adventure race team in the world,” he said. “This is something that we are good at. We work well together.”