The weekend of September 10th and 11th I got to attend an OCR called the Hardcore Mudd Run (HMR). Since the event is put on by firefighters and was occurring the weekend of September 11th, it seemed like a cool event to attend. As with most small OCRs that put on few events throughout the year, it had a mix of good and bad.
Yesterday evening, Spartan Race put out a press release about an informational session at the Reebok World Championships with the USADA (United States Anti-Doping Association) as the first step towards drug testing for the race series. The initial press release had many shaking their heads as to what this all means and how it will immediately affect the athletes at the event next weekend. This morning we spoke with Spartan Race's Director of Sport - Joe Di Stefano to find out more about this announcement.
As has been written numerous times before, obstacle course racing for many has transcended a simple activity they do on the weekends. The industry has a way of sticking around, like that mud behind your ear still there a week after you raced. The sport permeates your life, and you find your entire lifestyle changing, bedtimes are earlier, training is scheduled into your calendar, weekends become an excuse for an extended excursion in the woods or crazy long session in the gym. Not sure if you are a real OCR Racing Fanatic, read on and see if you have these five symptoms?
When BattleFrog Series recently announced they restructured the company last month and all future focus would be on their media offerings. Many racers in the OCR industry were immediately worried if they would see refunds for canceled races. Many veteran OCR racers have seen this pattern before with a company basically closing shop and never paying refunds or other money owed. However, in the last few days refunds, award checks, and more have been showing up in mailboxes around the country. Many have shared those checks on their social media accounts. BattleFrog Series is making good on its promises.
Reebok Spartan Race World Championships are headed back to Lake Tahoe, California for a second year. On October 1-2, 2016 the Spartan Race world will converge on the former Olympic skiing venue. This year an international field of racers will be competing for $100,000 in cash and prizes. This year the event will also include Future NFL Hall of Famer Randy Moss who will be looking to complete the Spartan Trifecta by crossing the finish line of the weekend’s Beast competition.
The sport of obstacle course racing (OCR) basically prides itself on the races being sufferfests. Heck Scott Keneally’s new documentary about the sport is even titled Rise of the Sufferfests. Some of the most memorable scenes in this movie are the visuals of the participants battling hypothermia after completing the events.
Just got back from a Spartan Race in Pala, California. Brutal heat, unforgiving climbs (starting with a whopper 5-mile mountain climb for warm-ups…), no shade or wind…all around Beast and 12 miles of it! I learned my lesson a year and a half ago racing a Spartan near Vegas. Desert conditions, a mountain climb to start, and I wasn’t nutritioned up enough for the job. The real culprit for me was salt, oddly enough. I blacked out briefly several times. Didn’t feel stable until a few hours post race. And it was only an 8-mile competition.
This weekend marked the return of Spartan Race to Southern California and the debut of a new venue at Pala Raceway. For years, Spartan Races, Tough Mudders, and other OCRs have been held at Vail Lake in Temecula. Love them or hate them, the endless, relentless hills overlooking and surrounding that venue were iconic to obstacle course racing in this part of the country. This year, all that changed, as the new owners of the Vail Lake property decided to rescind access to all of the various races that called Vail Lake home.
Muddy Mud Guts and Glory Masters, Warrior Dash Warriors, Beasts Beasting the UltraBeast and Conquer the Gauntlet...Conquistadors? Okay - that last one was a stretch, but you get the gist. This last weekend had no lack of races, mud, pain or fun! Whether it was a fun run or a death march you craved, OCR delivered in spades.
Conquer the Gauntlet headed to Arkansas over the weekend. Arnel Banawa of OCRTUBE made a trip to the midwest to check this series that continues to get praise from many around the OCR community. The globetrotting Banawa called this race, "I think that this is OCR's best kept secret! How did I not know about this 5-year-old race company?" with a reaction like that you know it is a good event.