What is a trophy raid
Trophy raid is rough sections overcome competition, usually held in a forest or marshland, in off-road four-wheel drive vehicles, special off-road motorcycles and quads.
The sense is in cars moving from point A to point B off the road for a certain period of time – from several hours to several days.
There are start and finish of the competition. At the trophy raids it is very important to successfully pass all the stages and perform the competitive rounds tasks.
Special stage is an off-road route segment with the control transit time. Off-road conditions at the special stage can be so challenging that a few kilometers passage of can take a whole day. Tasks for the trophy raid participants may consist not only of taking roadless area. Often they have to use the GPS navigation or orientate by the legend.
Vehicles taking part in the challenge must be specially prepared. In accordance with the vehicle preparation there are several categories: “TR-1” – almost a standard factory package car, “TR-2” – more prepared car, and “TR-3” and “PROTO” – free design prototypes, “off-road monsters”. Vehicles usually have large wheels, a winch, lights for moving in the dark, imported axles etc. It is necessary to unweight the machine as much as possible, to avoid drowning in a swamp; at the trophy raids much depends on the area and soil in the forest.
Passage of some route sections, including the special stages, requires large vehicles capacity and high level of athletes physical preparation. Therefore cars are prepared to participate in the competition in special workshops or by the sportsmen themselves. Speeds on the trophy raid route are low, so the focus is on the equipment reliability. In addition, the trophy raids are very dangerous, and well-prepared, reliable car can become a key factor not only to win, but also to preserve the life and health of the athletes. Minimal preparation includes the “protections” and special wheel disks installation, ground clearance increase. Often the engine is beefed up; to prevent the water ingress into the carburetor an air manifold with air intake is mounted at the car roof level. In addition, the necessary route accessories are installed: winches, hi-lift jacks, large capacity batteries, and so on. Often the car is totally rebuilt – there is almost nothing left from the basic configuration.
There are more “loyal” categories, with more available specifications, but they are also included to the sports classification.
Tourist categories are also provided by the organizers, where the scoring is based on “GEO-catching”, and participants overcome the routes in ordinary unprepared off-roadsters.
There should be a crew to participate in the trophy raid, consisting of at least two people – a driver and a co-driver. The driver’s task is to steer the vehicle, and the co-driver’s one is to calculate the route, to enter the points to the GPS, to think, how to drive to the point correctly and not to get stuck.
Typically, the standings are individual, but sometimes the organizers can establish the team standings, then several crews team.