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50,000 participate in top 3 obstacle races in March; Spartan Race raises the bar with marathon-distance obstacle race

6 Apr 2012

Roughly 50,000 (50,438) participated in top 3 obstacle races in March.

Combined with the 31,000 in February and 35,000 that took part in January, the year-to-date (YTD) participation total for the big three has reached 116,000.

Obstacle Race Participation Breakdown

Warrior Dash Participation Total: 29,587

Warrior Dash – East Texas: 7,357
Warrior Dash – Hawaii: 7,992
Warrior Dash – North Florida: 4,486
Warrior Dash – SoCal: 9,752


Spartan Race Participation Total: 8,851

Spartan Sprint – Conyers, GA: 3,567
Spartan Sprint – Charlotte, NC: 5,284


Tough Mudder (US) Participation Total: 12,000 (est.)

Tough Mudder – Texas: est. 12,000


April Events (Top Races)

Tough Mudder – Michigan: April 14 & 15
Spartan Sprint – Indiana: April 21
Warrior Dash – Mississippi: April 21
Warrior Dash – North Texas: April 21 & 22
Rugged Maniac – Greensboro, NC: April 21
Metro Dash – Virginia Beach, VA: April 21
Warrior Dash – Arizona: April 28 & 29
Tough Mudder – Pennsylvania: April 28 & 29

For a list of other obstacle races that may be holding an event near you, see this directory.


Obstacle Race Popularity

The Tough Mudder exceeded two million fans in March, increasing to total of 2.1 million fans.

March was an awesome month in popularity points for the Spartan Race! The Spartan Race is on pace to reach 1 million fans this month after adding roughly 130,000 “likes” last month. The Spartan Race also surpassed the Tough Mudder in number of Twitter followers.

Site traffic to the leading three has also been strong over the past year. Site traffic information comes from compete.com.

Below are popularity points as of Wednesday, April 4.

Tough Mudder
FB Fans: 2,083,571 (+136,186)
Twitter Followers: 36,821 (+3,766)

Spartan Race
FB Fans: 965,471 (+129,132)
Twitter Followers: 36,943 (+7,521)

Warrior Dash
FB Fans: 812,529 (+18,906)
Twitter Followers: 22,522 (+1,468)

Run for Your Lives
FB Fans: 195,866 (+61,695)
Twitter Followers: 8,876 (+1,597)

Rugged Maniac
FB Fans: 123,138 (+11,459)
Twitter Followers: 971 (+114)

Metro Dash
FB Fans: 77,085
Twitter Followers: 668

Hero Rush 
FB Fans: 43,034
Twitter Followers: 1,209

Dirty Girl

FB Fans: 38,530
Twitter Followers: 1,634

Dirty Dash
FB Fans: 31,209
Twitter Followers: 903

FB Fans: 15,701
Twitter Followers: 382

Diva Dash

FB Fans: 5,073
Twitter Followers: NA


Obstacle Race News Highlights

If you follow my facebook page, you may have already seen a couple of these news highlights. Two deserved to be repeated: 1) Angel Gonzalez, a paraplegic man who took on the Warrior Dash, and 2) Run for Your Lives, a zombie-themed obstacle race that continues to rise in popularity.

Looking for the next challenge in day-long obstacle races? Well, the Spartan Race is raising the bar with the first-ever marathon obstacle course. This inaugural event is planned for Vermont in September this year.

If you’re considering a career in obstacle racing, you may be fortunate enough to pursue and secure a position with companies that are redefining workplace culture. Red Frog Events, the firm that organizes the Great Urban Race and Warrior Dash, prioritizes fun and rewards creativity at their offices.

Spartan Race Unveils First-Ever Marathon-Distance Obstacle Course
Just when you thought it couldn’t get any tougher…the new Ultra Beast will be the first-ever, marathon-distance (26.2 mile) obstacle race to coincide with the main race held the same weekend. Double the fun, Ultra Beast will take competitors through two loops of the grueling main course — twice subjecting them to the toughest course Spartan can bring before reaching the finish line.

LA Times: Athletes get down & dirty in obstacle mud runs
An estimated 1 million people showed up last year at these down-and-dirty races, most of which did not exist four years ago. What’s the attraction? “At a certain point, regular running is boring and triathlons get too nerdy, expensive and linear,” says Alex Patterson, chief marketing officer at Tough Mudder… “Experience is the new luxury good — the cool stories you get to tell at work on Monday morning or post on Facebook.”

Six Tips to Turn Your Passion into Profits: Lessons from Obstacle Races
1. Don’t count on passion alone.
2. Hire passionate people
3. Share your passion
4. Keep the passion alive
5. Prioritize fun
6. Expand your passion.

Slipping on your New Year’s resolution? Sign up and train for a Spartan Race
Before you give me some obscene gesture with your hand and tell me off, l want you to know this race is different. Spartan Race isn’t like other 5Ks or half marathons. This race is an obstacle course, and it was designed to show working out doesn’t have to be torturous and it can be fun, entertaining, and challenging all at the same time…Spartan Race has plenty of ways to help you get motivated and prepare for this challenging course, including daily workout schedule…

Mud runs the cure to obesity?
With the number of race entrants increasing in parts of the country, obstacle course races are uniquely positioned to offer a fun, gritty venue for activity and fitness.

Q & A with Stacie Preston, a Death Race entrant
A local nurse, Stacie Preston is currently completing the preliminaries for the June 15 Spartan Death Race in Pittsfield, Vt. Why? “My initial response is that I seek out and crave events and tasks that others say I would not be able to complete, to prove those people wrong. In this case I chose the Death Race…my determination and pure willpower will finally prove that I can do anything when I desire it!”

Paraplegic proves life’s barriers can be conquered with a little help from your friends
A 33 year-old-man proved that life’s obstacles can be successfully conquered, one painful barrier at a time, with patience, perseverance, and with help from family and friends. The victim of a spinal injury when he was 23, he lives an active life that includes work, college, and adaptive recreation contests like wheelchair basketball and rugby. In the Warrior Dash, he and his girlfriend found his biggest challenge yet.

Run For Your Lives Puts Racer in the midst of a Zombie Apocalypse
This race may be new to some and familiar to others, but RFYL puts an awesome take a mud run obstacle race! Derrick Smith is the co-creator of Run For Your Lives, a 5K race and “zombie-infested” obstacle course. “All of our course locations are designed based on the existing terrain with about 10 to 12 man-made and natural obstacles included,” Smith said. Furthermore, “there’s multiple routes to the finish line, and there might be a couple dead ends, or you might hit a fork in the trail, and one way is going to be a little bit longer.”



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