Sunday, 8 March 2015

The Sydney Great Race (Amazing Race)

Hi everyone

Whilst this is not an escape room post, it does relate to something that I think would be appealing to many escape room fans.

On my birthday this year, my sister bought me tickets to go on an Amazing Race in Sydney with her, my wife and our friends.  We were a team of 5 adults.  The race is run as an homage to TV's The Amazing Race (although they carefully avoid any copyright infringements).

On the day (March 2015), we arrived at our meeting point in Wynyard Park to find 16 other teams (who looked much fitter than most of those in my team, myself very much included).  There were teams dressed up in cool outfits, there were small teams (of 2) and larger teams (of 6).

We had lots of fun throughout the day - taking photos with various items in the city, trying to work out some puzzles and challenges as quickly as possible, embarassing ourselves by singing and dancing in public in the city, etc.  It's amazing how you lose your inhibitions when you're in a race and have your eyes on the prize!

Three of our team know the city pretty well (and I probably know it the best, having previously worked in the city for 10 years).  This definitely helped in finding the locations and puzzles.

In the end, our team was pretty fast.  We managed to finish the race in about 80 minutes (with other teams crossing the finish line over an hour after us).  However, they cleverly give you bonus puzzles throughout the day, which if successfully solved will give you time off the clock (eg one puzzle might give you 10 minutes off your total race time, etc).

In the end our total time, when factoring in all of the bonus puzzles that we did, totalled negative 19 minutes and we came in first (much to our own surprise).  There was only 6 minutes in it though, so we just scraped through!

It was a heap of fun.  As the winners, we are now invited to the "invitation only" Champions Great Race race later this year, which should be fun.

When I received the tickets for the Great Race on my birthday, I thought that it would either be really awesome or really naff.  Thankfully, it was the former.

I recommend this race for all ages, although you have to be relatively fit to (literally) run around the city for a couple of hours.  One of my team was wearing a pedometer and she counted that we had done about 12,000 steps (many of which were staircases and on uneven ground).

It's definitely a fun day out.  For more information, you can find the Great Race website here.

My sister managed to get a Groupon or Scoopon, which meant that the per head cost was around $25.  As always, it pays to be registered on Groupon and Scoopon.

I'd be interested in hearing anyone else's comments if they have been to the Great Race as well!


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