UK Fulda Challenge Team ‘Best Ever’
The 2006 Fulda Challenge UK team is heading back to Britain after its best Arctic performance yet. Kate Balchin (26) and Martin Yardley (38) travelled to the breathtaking Yukon Territory at the end of January to take part in the annual extreme sports adventure. The UK team finished in fourth place, 30 points behind the winning team. Kate finished third overall in a field of world-class female athletes and was presented with a cheque for $1,000 (Canadian).
Belgium’s Liesbeth Buytart and Germany’s Martin Hollerbach were the top performing woman and man respectively and they received a cheque for $3,000 (Canadian) each. The final results meant that the German Lowa team won the 2006 Fulda Challenge after leading the event from start to finish. They were awarded a Klondike gold nugget each.
During the Challenge, the teams covered a distance of 2,500km in a convoy of Toyota 4x4s. Each vehicle was equipped with Fulda’s 4×4 Yukon tyres for enhanced grip and performance in winter conditions. The convoy travelled north from Whitehorse to Dawson City via some of the most stunning scenery in the Yukon. Along the way, the athletes stopped to compete in a number of endurance events, including a half-marathon, a 4×4 driving slalom course, a cross-country skiing biathlon, an ATV event and a snow shoe race. Each team was assessed on performance and awarded points for each of the ten events completed.
“I am really pleased with our performance,” said an exhausted Martin Yardley. “This has been a great adventure and we have met some like-minded adventurous people along the way. I am proud of Kate’s achievements. She had done so well and at least one of us walked away with a prize.”
“The entire Challenge has been amazing,” Kate added. “I have had a brilliant experience and made some good friends. I’m thrilled to have come third out of the ten women, as this is a real achievement in such a strong and athletic bunch. I am now looking forward to getting back to normal life and training for my next competition.”
Fulda Brand Manager Nicole Howitt is just as pleased with the overall scores. “I had high hopes for the 2006 UK team and they didn’t let us down,” she said. “Kate and Martin have battled throughout the whole event and recorded some really impressive wins. Their spirit really reflects the brand values of Fulda tyres – superior strength and outstanding performance.”