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Team Mamil and Los Sherpas de Xàbia 2 secured Sports and Leisure titles respectively

Monday 13th April 2015

javeamigos.com | JAVEA NEWS · MIRADOR CHALLENGE 2015

The weather was almost perfect for almost 150 walkers in 29 teams who picked up the gauntlet in the fifth edition of the javeamigos.com Mirador Challenge, a 29.5 kilometre route that links all 15 official viewpoints (called “miradores” in Castellano) along the stunning coastline of Jávea. Sponsored this year by Bar Quo Vadis and Villas-Plots.com, the Challenge was to cover the distance in the fastest possible time – without running – whilst passing through each viewpoint where, for some teams, a series of tasks was waiting for them. The event has grown in strength and has become one of Jávea’s premier sporting events of the year with the support of the Ayuntamiento de Xàbia, the Protección Civil and the Cruz Roja and attracting great interest to participate that the limit of 30 teams was reached long before the deadline to register.

It was probably down to the cooler weather that, despite the route being extended by some 2.5 kilometres for this year’s edition, the average time to complete the course was recorded as 5 hours 33 minutes, only ten minutes slower than 2014 when the course was shorter but almost an hour quicker than the third edition in 2013. It has been credit to some very serious pre-race training by the vast majority of the participants over the previous few weeks that these times were recorded; it was a truly stunning battle of fitness and stamina.

The teams were drawn from across the region with walkers representing Jávea, Moraira-Teulada, Benissa, Gata de Gorgos, Pedreguer and Xaló amongst others as well as a mother-and-daughter pair who had flown in from the UK especially to take part in the Mirador Challenge. It was a truly international affair with Spanish, British, Dutch, Polish and South American participants. One walker, having been let down for a lift, actually cycled all the way from Gata de Gorgos to join his team, covered the distance in a time that almost won the title – then cycled home again!

The teams gathered at Mirador La Granadella in the gloom of an overcast and chilly Sunday early morning, some of them having dragged themselves from the warmth of their beds to catch a special coach laid on to take them to the start-line. An occasional short shower of rain threatened to dampen the occasion just a little but the teams were determined and waited patiently for their turn to depart. Spanish ladies team Fenoll Marí led the way, crossing the start-line at 8.00am to begin their 29.5 kilometre trek to the windmills in the north. Twenty other teams followed, split into two categories – Leisure, who would be able to stop and admire the views for a short while, and Sport who were walking very much against the clock.

Waiting for them were a happy band of volunteers, dotted along the coast at each viewpoint acting as checkpoint supervisors as well as route marshals and support units. The Leisure teams had the additional task of meeting a series of additional challenges at a certain number of viewpoints, ones that called for a bit of mathematical knowledge.

Two teams competing in the Sport category, The Nordic Walkers and Team Mamil, made their intentions clear quite quickly and despite having started in 16th and 22nd position respectively, they were leading the way by the mid-way point and took over point in the final few kilometres, jostling for position to be the first to cross the line, if not the quickest of the day.  And it would be the Nordic Walkers who would arrive as a team first, followed by Team Mamil a minute later. They were welcomed by warm applause, cold beer and a chance to have soothing foot massages by members of the Costa Blanca Reflexology Group who had offered their services for the afternoon. Every person who completed the challenge received a commemorative medal to show off to their friends and family and maybe even encourage them to take part in future events.

Over the next two hours and ten minutes, the next 27 teams crossed the line, cheered on by friends and relatives, even perfect strangers who had wandered to the windmills simply to admire the view. Some headed straight for the beer, others to the foot massages. One or two even crossed the lines in tears of joy, having faced a challenge that they thought they might never do, encouraged by their team-mates and even those from other teams, representing the superb atmosphere and camaraderie between teams. Feet were inspected, muscles rubbed, injuries compared. They had done it – but who had won?

Later that evening, Bar Quo Vadis hosted a special presentation evening and the bar was rammed with teams, friends and relatives to await the results. First up was the Leisure category in which teams could spent a small amount of time at each viewpoint which would be deducted from the final time as well as do a series of tasks to find a final number, the less accurate, the more time penalties added. Victors for the third year running were the Jávea-based team Los Sherpas de Xàbia 2 who recorded a time of 4hrs 36 minutes, some 14 minutes head of runners-up CBYA Machos and a good 25 minutes ahead of third-placed Xeremells Orientation. They were presented with their trophies, sponsored by Bar Quo Vadis, Moraira Hamiltons and Knight’s Construction respectively.

The Sports category was for those teams who wanted to simply go for it and the fastest team proved to be Team Mamil who crossed the line in an adjusted time 4hrs 24 minutes, two minutes faster that their arch-rivals The Nordic Walkers; The Originals came in third, equalling last year’s personal record of 4hrs 29 minutes. The teams were also presented with trophies sponsored by Villas-Plots.com, Clinica Dental El Puerto and AMJASA respectively.

There were also a series of other awards – The Mirador Marauders won the Veteran’s Trophy for being the team with the oldest average age to complete the Mirador Challenge. The Nordic Walkers won the special stage award for the team that covers the 6 kilometre distance between Punta de l’Arenal and Cap de Sant Antoni in the fastest time and they did so in 58 minutes, breaking the existing record by three minutes. In fact, five teams broke the old record, proving just how competitive the event has become in 2015.  Both awards were sponsored by gatesandgrills.com.

The final award was the javeamigos.com Special Award which was handed to Kate O’Malley and her daughter Scarlett from The Nordic Walkers who flew over from the UK especially to take part in the event; at 16 years, 2 months and 3 days, Scarlett is also the youngest person to have ever taken part in the Mirador Challenge and indeed she led the way for much of the final few kilometres.

Some teams are already speaking about the next edition of the Mirador Challenge which has been pencilled in for Sunday 3rd April 2016. There have been some new records set this year; it will take a very determined team to break them. So, are YOU ready to face the challenge? More information can be found here or on the Facebook group ‘The Mirador Challenge’.

(penalties applied where applicable)

(stopping time discounted; penalties applied where applicable)

01 · Team Mamil - 4hrs 24m
02 · The Nordic Walkers - 4hrs 26m
03 · The Originals - 4hrs 29m
04 · The Time Travellers - 4hrs 39m
05 · Alesmosa - 4hrs 42m
06 · Blue Balloon - 4hrs 45m
07 · Karoon & Pepe Cabrera Team - 4hrs 46m
08 · RBL Marchers - 4hrs 56m
08 · El Caloret - 4hrs 56m
10 · Witness the Fitness - 5hrs 01m
11 · Kelly's Heros - 5hrs 12m
12 · The Gym Moraira - 5hrs 16m
13 · The Road Runners - 5hrs 18m
14 · Los Chaskis - 5hrs 47m
01 · Los Sherpas de Xàbia 2 - 4hrs 36m (5hrs 35m raw walking time)
02 · CBYA Machos - 4hrs 50m (5hrs 44m)
03 · Xeremells Orientation - 5hrs 01m (5hrs 2
04 · Fenoll Marí - 5hrs 06m (5hrs 36m)
05 · Los Sherpas de Xàbia 1 - 5hrs 12m (6hrs 10m)
06 · Miradobles - 5hrs 21m (5hrs 51m)
07 · The Mirador Marauders - 5hrs 42m (6hrs 13m)
08 · CBYA Chicas - 5hrs 48m (6hrs 26m)
09 · The Walkies Talkies - 6hrs 00m (6hrs 17m)
10 · The Serendipity Experience - 6hrs 03m (6hrs 40m)
11 · Five Shades of Grey - 6hrs 08m (6hrs 39m)
12 · Justin's Beauty - 6hrs 28m (6hrs 39m)
12 · RBL Strollers - 6hrs 28m (6hrs 50m)
14 · Reflections Moraira - 6hrs 33m (6hrs 27m)
15 · Justin's Hair- 8hrs 58m (6hrs 55m)

For more photos of the Mirador Challenge 2015 and information about the event, join the Facebook page here.

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