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XL Update – Letter from our Event Director

Hello folks, the big event weekend is coming up on us fast! I hope everyone is as excited to come ride as we are to host you! There have been a few questions coming up as all of you have been prepping for your ride, scrutinizing the route, understanding the resupply locations, and more. 

I wanted to send this email to provide clarity and respond to many of the questions we have been hearing. Please let us know if you have further questions after reading this – and please take the time to read to the end! 

The biggest question that we have been answering is that yes, the Trackleaders tracking service is REQUIRED to compete in the XL race. This is the best way that we can ensure the safety of riders out there since it is difficult to have a full Jeep crew following all the riders on this long/remote course. It also allows your family and friends to follow as you go along. This requirement means that a SPOT or Garmin inReach device is required as well. If you do not have one, you are able to rent a SPOT following the same exact link that signs you up for the Trackleaders service. If you do want to rent a SPOT, please fill out the application before close of business on Friday, May 28! Trackleaders wants to gather up all the needed devices and need this information to mail the devices to Emporia on Monday. Please take a moment now to complete.

Other questions we’ve been asked, and wanted to answer for all XL Athletes:

  1. There was a mistake in the XL Guide (it has already been updated on the site). There is a gas station/convenience store near Maple Hill that, with an earlier iteration of the course, was only 1 mile off the track to use as a resupply. The final version of the route goes no closer than 4 miles to the store, so this is no longer a viable resupply location. Riders are welcome to use it as long as they return to the same point on the course that they left, but we would recommend planning to go all the way from Eskridge at mile 41 to Alma at mile 118.
  2. The Stop 2 Shop in Alma is normally only open until 11am on a Friday night. We have spoken to the shop owner and they have agreed to stay open until 3am for all of you. Make sure to buy some supplies and thank the clerk when you stop in!
  3. Weather conditions: while it is too early to tell for sure, it looks like there could be some soggy points out on course this year. Make sure you come prepared for rain and wet. Think about things like rain jackets, changes of gloves and socks, extra measures like latex gloves and some way to clear mud from your bike. This is a part of the challenge that makes this event so exciting! 
  4. If you haven’t yet – please text UNBOUND to 888-777 – this will sign you up for text alerts for the region regarding weather and other emergency info. You will be automatically unsubscribed on June 8. 

I look forward to meeting you in person! 


Ben Sachs

Event Director


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