We are proud and completely overwhelmed that he second edition of the now legendary Midsummer Viking Challenge is sold out.
We are beyond excited with the support soo many of you have shown! We dream of there being room for even more teams at the MVC and we are exploring possibilities to expand the limit, which we only in our wildest imagination thought we could reach!!
We have created a standby list, that you can sign your team onto by using the link below.
The 2020 edition will take place on Saturday and Sunday June 20-21 again in Copenhagen, Denmark. Just like the first edition in 2019, each team will consist of three to five paddlers in this unique 24-hour team relay challenge. But we don't need information about team members, lycra size etc. now. Two months prior to the event, we'll send an e-mail to all team captains asking for team info.
One thing that we learned from the 2019-edition is that we need to increase the entry fee from 1.000 DKK to 1800 DKK (approx 240 euro) pr. team to cover direct expenses on food, accommodation and safety service. But if you sign up before August, 1., you'll get a discount of 300 DKK.
Photo: Jacob Gjerluff
The pier in front of the Kayaking Hotel in Copenhagen was packed with paddlers and Stand Up Paddle fans. The sun was burning hot and the broad smiles on the faces of the 150 paddlers who just finished the world’s only 24-hour SUP Relay could not possibly be wiped away.
They were stoked. Not only had they paddled for 24 hours and collected more than 10.000 Euros to raise awareness about and fight against plastic pollution. Many had just for the first time in their life tried paddling in the dark, despite the midsummer nights in Denmark hardly even get completely dark. Most of the participants at The Midsummer Viking Challenge had only slept for a few hours at the event campsite, but this did not dampen their enthusiasm or Viking Spirit.
- It has not only been the best SUP event ever. It has been the best sport event with the coolest vibe that I have ever attended, Anders Hoffman said - a 28-year-old Dane and Ironman-athlete.
Started paddling three hours before the event
He joined “Team Valhalla
Express” with legendary
Danish Viking Casper Steinfath
as team captain, even though,
that he only started his career
on a SUP board three hours
prior to the start of the
Midsummer Viking Challenge.
He was one of nearly 150
paddlers on 32 different teams.
The field in this inaugural
Midsummer Viking Challenge
was composed of paddlers
from 10 different nationalities
- most of them from Sweden,
Germany and Denmark.
Each team consisted of three
to five paddlers and it was up
to each team to decide how
often they would switch between
their paddlers, with the goal to paddle as many kilometers as possible in 24 hours.
The idea for the Midsummer Viking Challenge was born in Casper Steinfath’s mind last winter when he was struggling to cross the Skagerrak strait between Denmark and Norway as the first person ever. During the 147-kilometre long battle with Mother Nature he thought how to give less skilled paddlers the same experience with paddling in the dark, being part of something bigger than yourself and as a team achieving more than we think we humans are actually capable of.
- I'm so happy. To watch the smiles of the paddlers grow throughout the entire 24 hours. To watch how they loved fighting as part of a team instead of just by themselves. To watch how the elite and amateurs could paddle together was fantastic. I'll never forget this day, Casper Steinfath said.
Paddle 5.000 kilomtres
In average the teams paddled 30 laps and in total they paddled more than 5.000 kilometres around the artificial island at Amager Strandpark with nice flat water in the inside lagoon and the slightly choppy waters of Øresund on the outside. Paddlers were greeted with a nice view of the nearby Copenhagen Airport, the beautiful bridge to Sweden and a crowd of ocean windmills reminding the paddlers of the world we live in that needs our attention and care.
Back on land there was also a flurry of activity for spectators and supporters. With free vegan food to sample, good surf vibes on the pier, a local rapper that with his lyrics sent the sun to sleep from a 10 meter high crane - the scene was set for a party while the paddlers kept fighting their way lap after lap during the most beautiful midsummer night this year in Denmark. And when the sun rose in the East, a choir accompanied the returning daylight with a handful of Danish and Swedish songs in the crisp and fresh morning air.
- The night was extremely short but the past 24 hours were magical. It was like a party with a cosy atmosphere and volunteers everywhere. Even though the night was kind of nightmare-ish, with my head lamp as my only light source beside a big yellow moon, a death metal concert far away, bats and difficulties to navigate on Øresund, I never felt insecure.
Game changer in SUP life
There was lots of water safety and SUP friends around me, the Swedish paddler Maya Persson wrote on Instagram the day after.
As for Maya and many more, the Midsummer Viking Challenge was a game changer in their SUP life. One hour after the final 'Champagne lap', where all 150 paddlers had fun on the course together, Casper Steinfath sums up the weekend:
- Myself and the whole team behind the event came here with a dream to create an event that was unique and different from anything we have seen in the SUP world so far. I don’t think that anywhere in our wildest imagination it could be something like this.
I can happily tell you that the Midsummer Viking Challenge is coming back. We’ll meet again next year.
The next edition of the Midsummer Viking Challenge will take place in Copenhagen on 20-21 June, 2020.. Sign up is already open at vikingchallenge.dk - secure your team’s spot now.
Photo: Jacob Gjerluff
Photo: Jacob Gjerluff
Photo: Jacob Gjerluff
The course will feature a five-kilometre-long lap around the artificial ‘Amager Strandpark’ in the heart of Copenhagen, Denmark. There is nice flat water on the inside stretch and the slightly choppy waters of Øresund on the outside.
Even though Öresund can be choppy, the course is not in any way difficult or dangerous. It's a course that any semi-skilled paddler can handle.
The race directors will on race day decide the direction of the course according to wind and current. As always – the course is subject to change.