The venue announcement for the OCR World Championships came out yesterday and the OCR world was confronted with a whole new set of questions. While I can’t/won’t answer them all, I’ll knock a few off the list until the answers to others are made available. Also, I spoke with Adrian Bijanada, one of the principle players behind this event, who answered some more specific questions. Those questions and answers follow mine.
Will this race actually happen or will it be like several other hyped events that never made it to race day?
Barring an unforeseen tragedy, I am very confident that this race will take place. First, I know the organizer and other racers involved with the race and I trust them. Second, the venue is an established OCR site with existing obstacles and plenty of natural resources and space to expand. Third, the cash prizes will draw competitors to the event.
What makes this race worthy of the name “OCR World Championships”?
It’s true that the name arose from the event company and not an organized body of obstacle racers (which doesn’t exist by the way), but it is at least a brand ‘agnostic’ race, meaning that it is not aligned with any particular company. It fills a void for a championship race that unifies racers from all series and not just a specific company.
Will it be the permanent OCR World Championship Race?
Only time will tell.
What is the venue like?
The Mud Guts & Glory race venue is superb! Rolling, steep (very steep) hills, ravines, creeks, and trails provide a train that is not only beautiful, but extremely challenging. There are numerous fixed obstacles already in place that are well-crafted and unique. Race participants won’t be disappointed. See my review of Mud Guts and Glory to get an idea of the venue.
What is the weather like in Cincinnati in October?
It could be really nice. It could be on the chilly side. For that time of year expect the highs to be anywhere from 50 – 70.
Thanks to Adrian Bijanada for taking the time to provide some additional insight straight from OCR World Championships headquarters.
How many people do you expect to race and/or will it be capped?
“We do have a number in mind for each division (elite, each age group, journeymen/women, and team), however I think it’s infinitely more important that we get the pacing of the race right BEFORE focusing on a cap and because of that spots will initially be very limited. I recognize how important an event this could be for the sport and because of that I’d rather be conservative and hold a flawless (or near flawless) event void of bottlenecks and waiting at obstacles than gamble for a few more participants. An overcrowded course should never be acceptable at any race and we’re going to work very hard to make sure it doesn’t happen here.”
Will the racers go off in waves?
“Yes, definitely. If I look back at events with a huge age group field like the NYC Triathlon, which I’ve personally raced a handful of times, I see an event that has really studied how to manage a wave start. They’ve tried some new things over the years, some things that have worked and some things that haven’t, and I think a lot can be learned from looking at what works and what doesn’t.”
Will there be just one elite wave?
How difficult do you expect the race to be on a scale of 1 to 10?
“Tough question. If I had to answer I’d say we’re shooting for an eight. We expect it to be challenging for all athletes. However, we are not aiming to hold the most difficult race out there, but rather an event that is the best test of overall athleticism. For example, we already received the question on whether there will be electric shock obstacles and as of now, I’d say no. It’s not that they aren’t tough obstacles, because they are (I nearly blacked out at Tough Mudder PA in August), but I’m not sure they’re a good test of all around fitness, which I think is an important aspect of the sport. ”
What types of obstacles should racers expect (knowing that some of them will be kept secret)?
“Another tough question! There will be many of what you might encounter at other events–walls, crawls, rope climbs and the like, but I’m really excited for the new stuff that no one has experienced before. Again, the key will be the balance between something new and fun versus a good test of fitness. And I envision something that works well with the natural surrounds of the venue, which I think is part of the appeal of OCR. We want an obstacle that someone will walk away from and remember long after the race.”
Any special significance to the logo?
“Hmmmmm.. yes and no. I do generally think it’s just a great logo (and we have a great designer on staff that I have to thank for that, thanks Rina!), but yes it holds a bit of personal significance for me. But that’s something I need to keep to myself. Maybe I’ll share it with the winners. 🙂”
I know I all questions have not been addressed. More will come, as will the respective answers. In the meantime, many of the race details can be found at the OCR World Championships website.
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Thanks for doing this article! Considering the proximity to me, I definitely plan on making the event if I can manage one of the qualifying criteria.
Well, you can call yourself the College Football Championship Bowl…but unless you have some sort of sanctioning, it’s just another game…or race in this case. And if the name means anything, I would have to assume they only plan on doing one race a year and this would potentially be the unified championship race in the future. I do wish them success of course….and they certainly have a strong advisory group! The sport will defintiely need an event like this at some point. Let’s hope it actually does come off!