The Rugged Maniac Race travels to 20 different locations around the country to give people the opportunity to challenge themselves and have a blast outdoors, said Rob Dickens, chief operating officer for Rugged Races.
The race this weekend was one of Rugged Races’ smaller events, with 2,000 runners and over 500 spectators. The largest race is held in Massachusetts with 12,000 runners, Dickens said.
Dickens said the founder of the Rugged Maniac Race, Brad Scudder, came up with the idea after he participated in a Tough Mudder — a 10- to 12-mile race said by some to be the toughest event on the planet.
Scudder had trouble rallying a team to run with him in the Mudder and wanted to make an event more open to the public and focused on the obstacles, Dickens said.
The first Mad Mountain Mud Run, a fundraiser for Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, was so successful that there was no doubt it would become a yearly event.
The mud will fly again June 1, and registration for the three-mile obstacle course race is now open.
The race will return to Berkeley Park on Balfour Road in Hendersonville [North Carolina] and will venture into the surrounding forests. The course will be filled with mud pits, creeks, gooey crawls, and obstacles to climb.
On a recent Saturday morning at Candlestick Park, the brutish roar of football fans was replaced by girlish squeals of delight.
The cries grew in intensity as the first of more than 5,000 participants in the Dirty Girl Mud Run, an untimed 5K, summited the top of a giant, Pepto-Bismol-pink inflatable mountain that served as the first (and cleanest) of 10 mud-laden obstacles along the course.
It also included an army crawl through half a foot of mud in the stadium’s parking lot and a rope course on the field’s 50-yard line.
If a participant was uncomfortable doing an obstacle, a detour was encouraged. “What’s so great about Dirty Girl is that it provides for a challenging environment, but an environment that’s unintimidating,” said Andrea Neukom, marketing director of Dirty Girl.
Northern Californians will have another chance to get down in the mud for a good cause Oct. 26 when Dirty Girl comes to San Jose.
The Brits who have turned extreme obstacle courses into a multimillion-pound industry (dailymail.co.uk)
Dubbed mud runs, or obstacle races, these brutal challenges have, apparently out of nowhere, become wildly popular. Almost all the companies organising these races are brand new.
Tough Mudder itself was only launched in October 2009. In 2010, fewer than 50,000 people in the U.S. took part in all the runs combined.
This year, 1.5 million mud runners signed up for around 150 events.
The names of the races are shamelessly butch: Warrior Dash, Savage Race, Total Warrior – and in Britain, the grandaddy of them all, Tough Guy, held in January each year since 1987.
None of its rivals, however, quite matches the marketing genius of Tough Mudder. And none has generated the same controversy.
Franklin Regional graduates find Spartan Death Race a ‘discovering-yourself experience’ in endurance
The title of the extreme adventure race pretty much sums it up — the Spartan Death Race.
Held in Pittsfield, Vt., in June, it is a grueling test of physical and mental endurance that can last for 48 to 60 hours.
“It is the pinnacle of the adventure races,” said Nicholas Lieb, 26, of Swissvale, who will compete with his brother Adam, 27, and cousin Chris Bertini, 26, of Peters.
Mr. Bertini, who graduated from Peters High School and Temple University, ran in the Vermont race last year but had to quit after 28 hours when blisters on his feet forced him to stop.
“The Spartan Death Race is really a discovering-yourself experience,” he said. “I learned that I could work a lot harder than I thought I could … four hours in, you want to quit, and you go through constant highs and lows, but you keep going.
All three predict they will complete the race, but the odds are tough. Only about 10 percent to 15 percent of those who begin the race finish it; last year, 40 of the initial 300 finished.
© 2009-2015 Melissa Rodriguez
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