OCR News Weekly recaps the top news stories from around the obstacle racing industry. This week, Tough Mudder makes changes to Toughest Mudder rules, Marena Sports partners with Conquer the Gauntlet, The Urban Trails acquires BattleFrog Social channels, Spartan Race’s AGOGE 004, and race results from around the globe.
February 16, 2017 – OCR News Weekly
Tough Mudder makes changes to Toughest Mudder rules, Marena Sports partners with Conquer the Gauntlet, The Urban Series acquires BattleFrog Social channels, Spartan’s AGOGE 004, and race results from around the globe.
It’s Thursday, February 16, 2017 – I’m Margaret Schlachter and this is OCR News Weekly brought to you by Mud Run Guide.
Our top story this week begins with Tough Mudder.
Tough Mudder was recently named one of the 10 ten live event companies by Fastcompany in the yearly ranking.
Additionally, Tough Mudder announced Tuesday afternoon rule changes for the upcoming Toughest Mudder Events. Toughest Mudder is the newest addition to the Tough Mudder lineup. The rule changes announced on Tuesday include changes in prize structure for individual men and women, no team category for events, changes to the rules to qualifier for the Contender category at World’s Toughest Mudder, and the elite contender category.
From the announcement.
Contender Qualification for WTM [Updated]
Must run 25 miles (or more) at a Toughest event to qualify as a contender for WTM ‘17
We’ve removed Top 30 placement from the qualification measure
Contender perks will remain the same for WTM ‘17: Custom bib, Premium Pit & Start locations, and eligibility for cash prizing
Toughest Mudder will be the primary method for Contender Qualification at WTM ‘17. There will be an application process released in the coming weeks which will outline how and where to submit an application and the past -or- relevant performance required to enter into this category at WTM ‘17
Elite Contender Qualification for WTM [New]
Must place in the Top 5 at an RTM event in 2017 to qualify as an elite contender for WTM ‘17
Elite contender category will have the same perks as Contender, plus: Elite Bib and eligibility for Bonus prizing at WTM ‘17
50 Mile Bonus Prizing [Updated]
Is now extended to include both Individual Female & Male categories
A bonus prize of $5,000 will awarded to the winning participant/s in the Individual Female & Male categories if they reach 50 miles (or more) at a 2017 Toughest Mudder event.
Prizing Categories [Updated]
Individual Female and Male prizing categories have been increased and extended to 5th place to:
1st Place = $5,000 (4000 GBP)
2nd Place – $2,000 (1500 GBP)
3rd Place = $1,000 (800 GBP)
4th Place = $500 (400 GBP)
5th Place = $250 (200 GBP)
Achievement Awards [Updated]
25 Miles = 25 Mile Toughest Mudder Patch & Qualification for Contender Category at WTM ‘17
50 Miles = 50 Mile Toughest Mudder Patch
Annual Mileage Bonus Award – Most Miles [New]
$10,000 Bonus Prize to the Male & Female with the most Toughest miles at the end of the year
Limited to Top (3) performances in 2017 (i.e. only mileage from best 3 events will count)
Will be awarded at the WTM 2017 – Carb Load Dinner
CW SPECIAL TOUGH MUDDER
Finally, the Tough Mudder CWSeed Series ended last week with the one-hour Tough Mudder special – The Challenge Within – that aired Tuesday February 14 on the CW network. The special took the 5th spot in the ratings behind NCIS, The Middle (ABC), The Wall (NBC), New Girl (Fox) as the top rated cable show in the timeslot according to the Neilson ratings.
CONQUER THE GAUNTLET
Our next story comes from Conquer the Gauntlet who has officially partnered with both the Conquer The Gauntlet race series and their team, the Conquer The Gauntlet Pro Team. The new partnership means Marena Sport compression leggings, shorts, pants or tops will be sold at both the CTG merchandise tent and the CTG Pro Team tent. Additionally, podium athletes will receive free merchandise from Marena Sport at 2017 Conquer the Gauntlet events.
SPARTAN RACE AGOGE 004
The fourth edition of Spartan Race’s AGOGE took place over the weekend in Pittsfield, Vermont. The 60-hour endurance challenge had an extra challenge as a cold front blew through the area over the weekend with temperatures well below zero. The variable weather started with the bitter cold on Friday then a majoy storm dropped 16 inches of snow, making the turnout smaller for the event. The wind picked up during the day Friday, as the participants went for a horseback trek and the rappelling segment of 004. The average temperature during the entire event was between 5-15 degrees as the participants trekked around Vermont.
Approximately, 60 participants registered. 28 started the extreme endurance challenge and 18 finished walking away with a AGOGE finisher medal and slice of the Spartan Race trifecta pie.
THE URBAN TRIALS
Facebook was a blaze with comments after obstacle race company The Urban Trails took over the old BattleFrog Series facebook and other social assets on Wednesday afternoon. BattleFrog ceased operating a few months ago and sold off all the assets. The Urban Trails which held one event in 2015 acquired Battlefrog’s social assets and rebranded the facebook page on Wednesday. Wednesday saw a flood of comments on the Facebook page and a fair amount of confusion. Urban Trails put out this statement:
The Urban Trials series of obstacle races announced the acquisition of tangible and intangible assets from the recently closed BattleFrog Series.
“I’m pleased to announce The Urban Trials has acquired a significant amount of assets from the BattleFrog Series, which ended its operations at the end of 2016,” said Daryn Hillhouse, CEO and founder of The Urban Trials. “This acquisition allows us to expand our vision of staging an incredible, mass participation, family-friendly, obstacle fun run series, and we look forward to welcoming all the BattleFrog fans to the Urban Trials brand.”
The negotiations with BattleFrog management were conducted by Mr. Hillhouse and Garnet Heraman, an Urban Trials board member, and strategic advisor. “The acquisition includes tangible assets such as state-of-the-art aluminum obstacles, as well as certain intangible assets such as the BattleFrog Facebook company page,” said Mr. Heraman. “This gives us a great head start on establishing a national footprint in 2017.”
The Urban Trials has it all: 15x entry-level obstacles, and awesome mental challenges, infused with technology. This is the first ever event to be powered by a smartphone app, which participants will use to look for codes, search for clues, test their memory and solve puzzles, all while getting some healthy outdoor exercise!
This is not the first time that assets from one race organization were sold to another. Superhero scramble sold off all their mailing lists and other items after they closed shop. This is however, the most visible transfer of assets between companies to date. Currently, Urban Trails is slated for five events in 2017 in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana.
Heading over to Europe:
Obstakels.com and the Dutch Mud Men hosted the Dutch OCR Awards over the weekend. Dirk Schrema and Gertjan Van Voorden worked to bring together this event. Mudstacle, the United Kingdom-based OCR media site, was on hand for the awards ceremony and said this of the ceremony:
There were nine awards in total and, inspired by the Mudstacle awards, in each category the top three nominations were announced before the sponsor read out the winner. We had sponsored the ‘Muddiest Event’ award and got to hand out the prize and coincidentally enough it went to the guy from Strong Viking that I was sat next to!
The winners of the night were.
Best Kids Race – Strong Viking Family Edition
Best Venue – Mud Masters Biddinghuizen
Best Race for under €30 – Hang-on Run
Muddiest Event – Strong Viking Mud Edition
Best Themed Race – Breakout Run
Best Obstacles – Strong Viking
Best Newcomer – Tot de nek in de drek
(which means ‘up to your neck in dirt’)
Best Training Facility – Family Fit Indoor Survival Staphorst
Best Overall Obstacle Race – Strong Viking
Over the weekend a few races took place around the world and we have those results for you.
Warrior Dash kicked off their season over the weekend in Florida. Warrior Dash while known by many as more of a fun mud run offers a competitive timed heat at the beginning of the day. The competitive heat is a qualifier for OCR World Championships and US OCR Championships. The top results from the weekend are:
1 Caleb Gruner
2 Abraham Ashton
3 Christopher Harris
1 Caroline Norton
2 Ashley Carpenter
3 Amy Hood
South Africa kicked off their obstacle racing season with Toyota Warrior Race taking place in Legends MX. The weekend featured a number of events with several divisions. Warrior Race is the premier series in the country. The race is a qualifier for the OCR World Championships. The top results in the Black Ops Elite division on Sunday were.
1 Claude Eksteen
2 Hlelani Radebe
3 Greg Avierinos
1 Trish Bahlmann
2 Dominique Doliveira
3 Sabrina Daolio
Moving to the United Arab Emirates, the Sandstorm MARMOUM took place outside of Dubai over the weekend. The race featured impressive obstacles and drew athletes from around the world to compete in the desert. Members of the OCR World Championship team were on site to evaluate this new OCR World Championship qualifier. Top finishers on the 10K course included.
Heading into Asia, Viper Challenge, took place over the weekend in Singapore. Viper Challenge is one of Asia’s premier obstacle race series since 2015. The most recent event took place on Santosa Island in Singapore.
Those are your headlines this week from around the obstacle racing world.
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