Spartan named the 2018 Pro-Team today. Many are returning faces to the team with a few new additions for the 2018 season. This year thirteen members have been announced for the team. Familiar names Robert Killian, Alyssa Hawley, Ryan Kent, Rea Kolbl and Nicole Mericle are all back on the team for another year. New athletes Veejay Jones, Cassidy Watton (Past Stadium Team) Kirk DeWindt, Leigh Wasteney, Rachel Paquette, Sara Knight and Austin Azar. More information below from the announcement.
Heading into the Seattle leg of the U.S. National Series, the world’s largest obstacle race, and endurance brand has announced the line-up, and new expanded format, for its 2018 Spartan Pro Team. The new format will see a collection of more than fifty male and female athletes competing for cash and prizes on the road to the World Championship in North Lake Tahoe, CA – spread across two categories, “Premier” and “Select.”
Premier athletes include some of the biggest names in OCR who are staples on the Spartan podium including: Robert Killian, Alyssa Hawley, Ryan Kent, Rea Kolbl and Nicole Mericle. Killian and Hawley placed third in the men’s and women’s categories at the 2017 Spartan World Championship.
The Select athlete program was created to expand the competitive field at Spartan events while developing new talent. The category features more than 50 athletes that consistently finish in the top 20, including Veejay Jones, the youngest athlete to ever win a Spartan race, Broken Skull Ranch Champion Cassidy Watton, “The Bachelorette” and “Bachelor in Paradise” contestant Kirk DeWindt, and more, such as Leigh Wasteney, Rachel Paquette, Sara Knight and Austin Azar.
“Spartan competitors are the toughest athletes on the planet, and as the sport continues to grow, the field and level of competition continues to grow with it, creating the need for the enhanced pro team,” said Spartan Pro Team Coach Joe DiStefano. “The battle between the established pros and up-and-coming athletes will forge rivalries on the course creating an exciting season for racers and fans alike.”
Official Spartan partners including Craft Sportswear (Performance Apparel and Footwear), Darn Tough Vermont (Sock) and Gatorz Eyewear (Sunglasses of the Spartan Honor Series and Spartan World Championship) will outfit the Pro Team this season.
The U.S. National series returns to Snohomish, WA April 14, before heading to new championship venues in Southern California’s Big Bear Lake May 19; Chicago, IL June 23; and the finale in Eden, UT July 28, where the U.S. champions will be crowned based on cumulative series ranking points. With more than $100,000 in cash prizes on the line, the five-race series, combined with the Canadian and Mexican National Championship Series, leads to the North American Championship taking place in West Virginia, USA August 26, 2018.
The Global Championship Series features events on five continents, with National Championship series leading to Regional Championship events that qualify racers for the World Championship. To qualify for regional championships, competitors must place top 10 in any regular season or National Series event. To qualify for the World Championship in North Lake Tahoe September 29, racers must finish top 10 in a National Series event or a Regional Championship.
Spartan events focus on sport and athleticism, pushing the bodies and minds of competitors to the limit across miles of unforgiving terrain while they conquer signature obstacles such as the Spear Throw, Bucket Brigade, and Barbed Wire Crawl.