In early 2013 I was driving by a local farm that was hosting something called the Rugged Maniac. I didn’t really have a clue what this was at the time but the billboard looked cool and I wanted to find out more.
This being my first Merrell Down & Dirty Race, I was not sure what to expect when it came to turn out so I was pretty impressed right from the start. It was sunny, but a little cold with a brisk wind, yet the turnout was well in the thousands. I made my way over to the event area and checked in with registration within minutes. I surveyed the event and saw participants of all ages and gender, Merrell Down & Dirty clearly has built a fan base that covers just about everyone.
I was able to walk around and get a good look at a lot of the obstacles and terrain, and then had the opportunity to practice on the “Platinum Rig”, along with other racers in the dark. The energy even on Friday night was amazing and beyond anything I had experienced to date, including both my Vermont Beast’s.
When Adrian of the OCR World Championships first ran the seed of his idea by me for a unified championship at the MGG course not even one year ago, I gave him the adamant “NO! DON’T DO IT!!! Terrible terrible terrible idea!”
With the OCRWC this weekend, we wanted to get some thoughts from some of the pre-race favorites. Kien Lam got some burning questions answered for us.