I Accomplished The VZFit Explorer Summer time Journey Problem, Prize Winners Introduced
Virzoom’s VZFit Explorer Challenge has ended. The 21-day event, which consisted of 7 drives and more than 300 miles, ended on September 7th. The competition was just one of many tournaments held as part of the first VR Fitness Summit, an ambitious virtual event coordinated by the Virtual Athletics League (VAL) and involving more than forty studios and developers. All competitions had $ 25,000 in prize money, with Virzoom’s Explorer Challenge having a $ 1,000 prize fund.
As a long time user of VZFit, I chose the Explorer Challenge for several reasons. First, indoor cycling has become an integral part of my weekly VR training program, and I wanted to evolve with more frequent, longer rides to see what I was capable of.
Second, with 2020 and the global pandemic that wrote off all vacation options and severely restricted even the most mundane social activities, I wanted to use VZFit Explorer as a kind of virtual travel saver. The opportunity to do a number of road trips, visit exotic locations and get a sense of adventure from home and I would add without having to wear a single face mask. I felt like I was sticking my finger on Covid19 and claiming my summer back.
And thanks to the excellent ride curations from Virzooms Ride Finder and Keeper Robert Collins, I got exactly what I was hoping for.
The seven trips on four continents offered a spectacular backdrop, with a trip through the Italian Dolomites being a wonderful highlight. Check out my 30 minute video clip of me cycling through the mountains. The landscape slowly changes from glorious sunshine, pine trees and greenery to a barren white wilderness of ice and snow as I negotiate the winding curves of the mountain. The video really doesn’t do the ride justice, it was a fantastic and unforgettable experience in VR.
The Scottish Highlands was another obvious choice. The rugged mountains and hills were known worldwide for their natural beauty. A river bank along the Danube through Budapest featured some amazing architecture and historic buildings, while Japan’s archipelago of small islands, all connected by a series of modern bridges and tunnels, offered breathtaking views of the sea and sunshine that really felt like a miniature -Summer vacation felt like.
But the seventh and final ride was the real challenge. A 142-mile drive through the Badlands desert in Death Valley, California, navigating the strange terrain proved to be a psychological test of its own, as hours of riding seemed to get me nowhere.
A true path to nowhere, through the vast, unchanging surroundings of the Badlands, was both a psychological and a physical test.
Thanks to a few missed days on the saddle, I’ve already gone back to the third week. By my calculation, this meant I had to catch up 28.5 miles in the past week. In fact, it was much more than it turned out that VZFit’s 300 miles in 21 days was named for convenience rather than accuracy. Adding up every single driving length gave the correct total of over 330 miles, which means I was about 50 miles (about two and a half hours of driving) behind.
After doing all six little rides, I didn’t want to let this final challenge beat me, so I gave up on enduring the agony that could affect my perineum and went through four painful 90-minute sessions over four days, to complete the final ride and with it the Summer Challenge with three days off!
The Great Dolomites Road in Italy offered perhaps the most spectacular scenery of the entire challenge. It is a beauty that deserves a greeting.
Finished first – Shon Tamblyn
To keep me from feeling too cocky, it should be acknowledged that Shon Tamblyn was the first to finish in the middle of the second week, before anyone else had done 6 rides, let alone all 7. This was no surprise. Shon has toured virtually the entire country of Japan by bike, and his summer riding has been an epic ride from east to west across the entire European continent. That challenge was just a weekend away from his real drive!
Shon Tamblyn’s majestic performance brought him to the final a few days before anyone else.
A successful and popular event
Robert Collins provided me with the final stats for the event which are pretty impressive. During the duration of the tournament, a total of 216 drivers took part, 89 of whom completed at least one of the 7 drives. A total of almost 600 hours were driven, the distance covered 12400 miles, enough to circle half the world.
For all 17 cyclists listed below, all 7 rides were completed within the time limit and I am very happy with myself to be among them.
Challenge the Completists
Honorable Mention also goes to the following people who completed every other trip but did not complete Badwater on time
AlisiaDragoon, another challenge, admires a picture-perfect sunset in the land of the rising sun.
The winners will finally be announced!
Each participant received points from completed trips and shared snapshots, which were then added to the raffle. The more entries were included in the raffle, the more points were collected and thus the chance to win some money. 6 points were awarded for each completed trip, 2 for each shared snapshot and 1 for at least 10 minutes of trip per day. Completing all 7 trips brought with it a substantial bonus of 53 points, so that at least in theory the drivers who completed the event had a far greater chance of winning a prize.
Due to some technical issues, the raffle was postponed for a week, but the winners have finally been announced.
Congratulations to the following people:
1st place – Emart11 $ 400
2nd place – Berly14 $ 300
3rd place – Shon_T $ 100
4th place – RResistance $ 100
5th place – Andulka $ 100
As an additional reward, Virzoom has announced that all participants who have collected more than 30 points during the event will automatically receive an additional free month for their VZFiT subscription.
Overall, this event was a complete success with dozens of people attending and putting in several hours of hard work on their motorcycles. Encouraging people to get fit and active is always a worthy goal, which was reinforced during this insane year when healthy weight and an active lifestyle are a major defense against Covid19.
If you’ve never tried VZFit Explorer and are curious to learn more about this excellent app, you can check out my VZFit Explorer review. If you want to know how to hook up your stationary bike check, I’ve written a comprehensive guide on how to get it set up with VZFit using a third-party sensor.
VZFit is a subscription service that enables full integration of any stationary bike in VR via the Oculus Quest or Oculus Go headsets. The monthly fee is $ 9.99 or $ 99.95 per year. There is also a limited free version that features a VZFit Explorer ride and VZfit Play game every month.
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