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Savage Race & the Racer Experience

There is one race series I look forward to every year, Savage Race. For me, Savage Race usually provides me with the best race experience of the year. Last year, I was lucky enough to participate in both Albrightsville and the Maryland races, but this year, I had only the PA race on my calendar. I can comfortably say, and defend my position if necessary, that Savage Race puts the racer's experience above the bottom line, making it a must run race. While everything isn't always peaches and cream when it comes to putting on and running an event like the ones we all love to run, there are times when your customer services skills hat must be worn. Some wear it proudly, some don't even let you know that they have one. This year, in this race, I got to see first hand what Savage is made of.

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Let’s get vertical! Vertical Playground 2018

With ultrarunning becoming a popular transition from obstacle course racing for some, new races are popping up all of the time. In talking with a few friends last year about some of the ultras we had run, as well as some of the more challenging OCR events, we realized a lot of us enjoy races with a lot of vertical gain. It seems most of my OCR, and a good bit of my ultra friends, really enjoy playing in the mountains and the challenges that come with the ups and downs of terrain. Some people really enjoy just plain old running, but it can get monotonous and, frankly, boring.

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Green Beret Challenge Team Commando

Under the cover of darkness, the teams begin to descend on OCR Favorite Reveille Peak Ranch in Burnet, Texas. A fitting place that is known for its beautiful yet treacherous terrain. Eager to devour anyone that does not mind their next step. Similar can be said about the host race, the Green Beret Challenge. Designed with building better humans in mind, those that attempt it without being ready to push through, to become more, can be caught off guard and find themselves in over their head. Luckily for all, the mind behind it all, Mark Ballas, is there in case that happens and will drive you towards his goal of making all his participants better than they entered.

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2017 Inaugural Fallen Heroes Memorial Ultra Beast, Glen Rose, Texas

What initially started as an idea from listening to the OCR community, turned into OCR research. That research led to conversations with Joe DeSena and team. Almost 2 years later, those conversations turned into the new Ultra Beasts of 2017. The location that was the genesis of these new races was Rough Creek Lodge in Glen Rose, Texas. On October 28th, the Ultra Beast arrived in Texas with the weather flare we have all become accustomed to. 

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Tougher Mudder Central Texas 2017

You always know when May rolls into Texas. April's weather is nice and pleasant with a few hot days here, a few humid days there, but overall I call it perfection.  Like clockwork, we get a quick preview about ten days before May for the temperatures coming our way. This year was no different after a warm drive to just outside of Austin, Texas. I enjoyed a pre-race meal and went to sleep. I wake up at 5 am and say hello to Texas in May. Warm and humid already but I am ready to return to the first major race series I participated in. After four years I was returning to try out Tough Mudder’s (TM) first go at a competitive series - Tougher Mudder.

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2017 Killington Ultra Beast & Beast Review

I have been around the block this year. I have gone through a number of injuries that have inhibited or limited my participation in almost all of my events this year. When Killington started rolling around, I was nervous about running the Ultra Beast on this mountain again. Last year, the mountain almost took me out when my knee decided to make everything past mile 11 grueling. This year had its own set of challenges and again, conventional wisdom would suggest that I take the safe route and just run the beast.

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2017 Savage Race Albrightsville Review

Since the dawn of time, man has been looking for... wait, what? This is OCR, not a history lesson or a PBS documentary... nevermind. Since I broadened my OCR horizons a few years back, one event I look forward to, almost as much as Killington, is Savage Race in Albrightsville, PA. Not because it's Albrightsville, PA, but because it is Savage Race, and it is close by. If you hadn't guessed it, I am a fan of the Savage Series, but there just aren't enough of their races to go around. However, when it does come around, you should get your butt out there and get Savage.

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The Inaugural United States OCR Championships

It is starting to feel like the good Lord has a ‘sense of humor’ we’ll call it when Texas decides to have a race and for the inaugural United States OCR Championships he definitely had a “here hold my beer” type inspiration. This time though instead of making the obstacle crazy amounts of water on the course, he decided to go with logistics as the first obstacle of the event. Finding a way to get to Y.O. Ranch Headquarters for many became significantly more complicated as Hurricane Harvey (in case you missed it) raged from Southeast Texas to parts of Louisiana. The result was the disruption of one of the World's busiest airport hubs and a man-made gas shortage based out of fear. Either way made things exciting.

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