OCRWC Review

They Battled. They Conquered.

Our Battle Corps team took to Ontario, Canada last weekend for the OCR World Championship! Six team members, six different perspectives of this international event. Read about their experiences below!


jasonJason’s Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
For me personally, this occurred during the second half of the 15k race. At the Wreck Bag carry, I was able to stay ahead of the Female champion Lindsay Webster, and on the subsequent climbs I was now passing my fellow Pro male competitors. My endurance was now showing. In addition, I was able to run right with the number 8 female in the race, basically stride for stride. For me this is a win. My performance in this race now allows me to set a goal of Top 100 for next year’s event and work towards this all of the 2017 season… and I can’t wait!

Describe your favorite on-course element.
I loved the mountain bike section of trail on the back 1/3 of the course. It was most downhill and very technical running which plays to my strengths. Because the trail was made for bikes the turns were banked like a NASCAR track. There were also a lot of small bump type hills which favors a runner who can slow down and then accelerate quickly

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
This race was not all that challenging in it’s design; however, my “battle” was against the Pro field. I raced in the Age Group division last year. This year I was going against the top 250 or so racers in the world. I was able to fare pretty well against them, so I left this race with much higher expectations for my 2017 season. I took on that challenge to test myself and I performed well, so life is definitely better when battled!

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
Join a Ninja warrior gym like KOR Komplex to hone your obstacle skills. However, most importantly, train for hills!! Run hills, hike hills, carry Wreck Bags up hills. If you can perform well on hilly terrain then you will do well at this event.

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
You can’t really compare an international event to your “weekend OCR.” There is nothing like putting on the stars and stripes and taking on the world. Hearing all the various languages cheering on competitors on the course is unbelievable. It’s simply the closest thing to the Olympics most of us will ever experience, and the athletes will never forget it!

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
This event is much more than just a race. It’s about the entire experience. I would suggest to any athlete who attends the OCRWC to participate in as many aspects of this event as possible. My teammates chose to race every single event. I chose to only take part in the 15k and Team events. This allowed me more time to network, and get out and about amongst everyone and mingle, catch up with friends, and have a little fun. This event is one of the best experiences in our sport so I feel that you need to take as much of it in as you can.

For the podium athletes it’s a lot about the competition, but for everyone else, maximize your experience!


chrisChris’ Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
This was my second opportunity to compete at OCRWC, so the race itself is something I was prepared for. However, it never ceases to amaze me how Coach “Pain” Dwayne Montgomery, the start line MC, inspires those who are about to compete. He has something special for each and every wave of athletes to toe the starting line. However, on Sunday afternoon as I stood in the corral at the start of the Make-A-Wish charity run to conclude the weekend, I was brought to tears. He reminded us of those who are not able to do the things we do everyday, and to turn our thoughts to the children that are supported by The Make-A-Wish Foundation. As a new father myself, it resonated with me more than I imagined it would. A clear reminder of how we should be less selfish, and a lot more selfless.

Describe your favorite on-course element.
What I enjoy most about the OCRWC course is the chance to test yourself against varying obstacles from all of the world. With 48 obstacles on the course, half of which are featured obstacles from guest races series, you get a little bit of everything. You see some familiar ones such as the Stairway to Heaven from Conquer the Gauntlet. And you see new exciting ones such as Urban Sky, Skyline and the Floating boards. It makes for one of the most fun courses you could compete on if you are an obstacle lover.

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
When you get to compete alongside 2000 athletes from across the globe, you gain an entirely new perspective about how everyone has their own battle to face. Some are there for personal glory and competition, others are there to prove something to themselves and some want to inspire others through hard work and perseverance. No matter which battle that individual had, every single person you see at OCRWC loves obstacle racing and you can see it in the pure joy before, during and after the event.

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
Don’t question your ability. OCR World Championships is a celebration of OCR as a whole, and all the athletes that make up the industry. This is exactly why there are age group and Journeymen divisions, everyone deserves to experience this! When the weekend is over you will have a renewed belief in the human spirit and how a sport can bring people of so many varying backgrounds together in a positive way. With that said, it is a lot of grip based obstacles, so train for that throughout the year and you will be in great shape.

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
OCR World Championship is different than any other OCR race you will go to. The atmosphere is electric; everyone is experienced and excited to represent their country, family, sponsors and OCR organizations. You see the teams of athletes running around the course cheering and taking photos and videos of their friends as they put on incredible athletic displays. From your left you hear someone speaking French, on your right you hear the Aussie team chanting. As they chase their teammates down the course, you hear yet another of the 44 countries represented at OCRWC begin to fill the air; its a truly incredible experience to see unfold. As I heard many describe it, “It feels Olympic.” Maybe one day we will see obstacle course racing appear in the summer games, until then OCR World Championships is our Olympics!

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
After 2 years of competing at OCR World Championships I still have not lost my band for being unable to complete an obstacle. However, I have yet to run a perfect race. During the 3k race I was delayed at one of the obstacles and it took me 15 minutes of re-attempting to complete it, essentially eliminating my chances to place competitively. In my mind it was a disappointment because I feel I am much stronger at short courses. The next day at the 15k, my quads started cramping up about 6.5 miles into the race, reducing my speed to nothing much more than a power hike the rest of the way or risk locking up. However, for the second year in a row my best performance came during the Team relay event. The relay format gives you an opportunity to display your strength and race with your team to put together the fastest time possible. Racing individually can be fun, but there is something special about coming together with your teammates and crossing that finish line as one. You can never lose when you have the right people around you, and that is exactly what I have with the Battle Corps!


leahLeah’s Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
It’s hard for me to pick a specific moment- I was most impacted by the environment/aura of the village. From the moment we checked in and were given our “Athlete Pass,” it felt Olympic. The village was electric! We were able to mingle with athletes from other countries… swap shirts/jerseys… and feel important/valued.

Describe your favorite on-course element.
My favorite obstacle was the “mini rig” on Saturday. This was my first experience with an obstacle that favored shorter athletes! The entire rig was about 5ft tall and for once, I had an advantage! I was able to reach every apparatus and didn’t have to worry about my height holding me back!

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
My drive has been intensified. As much as I had wanted to keep my band, I honestly didn’t think I would be able to. But through perseverance and determination, I did it! Life is Better When Battled- and that band meant more to me than it would have had it been given to me or not as hard earned.

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
Do it! Push past your limits and try! The experience is indescribable and regardless of placement, it’s worth it!!

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
In a lot of ways it’s the same… it’s the people of OCR that make it so great! No matter the jersey or country, people cheer for each other, give a pat on the back, and are happy for each other’s success. In other ways, It’s completely different! The energy and excitement is palpable. It’s a sun up to sun down event of excitement.

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
I made the decision to race with the pros, rather than my age group, despite feeling WAY out of my element. To be in that start corral with my personal heroes from across the world was humbling and overwhelming!! What in the world was I doing there?!? Nevertheless, when Coach Pain said go… off I went! I’m proud of my performance… only 44 pro women kept their band that day…. and another nine only failed one obstacle. I am proud to say I was one of those nine. Little did I know, but I did belong there! I have learned not to doubt myself or my abilities… and trust my training!


scottScott’s Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
At the finish line of the 15k race competitors embraced each other after a hard fought battle. Some collapsed in exhaustion while others helped people up and celebrated and congratulated each other.

Describe your favorite on-course element.
I think my favorite thing about the course would just be the number of obstacles. Many of these were obstacles from different race series’ that we had never seen before. There weren’t any that were particularly overly difficult by themselves but the culmination of all of them together required a good amount of technique and strength endurance.

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
This event just re-enforced that “Life’s Better When Battled”. After another year of training since the last championship I felt like I was able to put it all out there on the course and was satisfied with the effort and results. I’m also determined to keep battling to improve further and have even better results next year.

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
Go for it. It’s an amazing event that you will not forget. If you just want to go out there and have fun sign up for their journeyman wave. If you want to qualify for the competitive heat’s start training for next season.

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
An international event like the OCRWC is like no other event you will ever see. After battling it out on the course with with some of the world’s best obstacle racers everybody joined together afterwards to cheer on and celebrate the rest of the runners. All of the different flags, uniforms, languages, and cultures came together to make for one great event. On the final day it was great to be able to take on the course as a team and represent the USA and The Battlegrounds together as we conquered the pro team wave.

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
The one thing that stood out to me was my 15k race. Myself, a Ninja Warrior competitor from Sweden, and a Canadian obstacle runner battled it out for most of the race. Going up the mountain the Canadian led the way, on the flat and downhill sections I would take a lead, and then when the obstacles came the Swede would fly through and take the lead. It was an amazing battle throughout the course. At the end we congratulated each other on a well fought battle.


meganMegan’s Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
Completing the platinum rig on the first try. I didn’t hesitate or doubt myself. I just focused on having fun and using the skills I have been practicing.

Describe your favorite on-course element.
I love running in the mountains. I especially love the fall weather and colors while competing. It’s so pretty this time of year. Any course with a nice view makes me happy.

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
Yes it has. I fell on my back when I was nearing the end of the skull valley obstacle. I was fine but sore. I quickly got up and retried it 4 more times. While I have to give up my band on that obstacle I was super proud that I attempted it. It reminded me of an obstacle I have been too afraid to do at Kor Komplex. This has taught me that I can overcome my fears and do more than I ever thought. I was able to successfully complete 92% of the obstacles and I am proud I gave it my all for each one. Crossing the finish line was the best feeling!!! It didn’t matter my time, my ranking- I finished despite the fears aches and fatigue.

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
Start where you are at. Visualize yourself there crossing the finish line. Don’t compare yourself to others…. just decide to start now!! Your Battle Corps friends will help you along the way.

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
More diverse group of people- pros, the average racer, different languages spoken. Different obstacles that you don’t see in the US. It’s great reading about an obstacle but even better when you get to do it. The obstacles vary in technical difficulty too. There’s many more people at an international event too.

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
I can’t say enough great things about the OCR community. It was such a cool feeling running through the woods surrounded by people from multiple countries. Everyone supporting and cheering you along the course, even if you passed them. It was awesome being surrounded by likeminded people on the same mission. The energy was contagious- the crowd was smiling, cheering for you and supportive. This meant so much whenever I felt like giving up on an obstacle. I love the OCR community!!


nan2Nan’s Experience

What moment was the most impactful to you at OCR World Championships?
I felt that the most impactful moment for me was once we arrived at Blue Mountain and saw the athlete village. I thought to myself “Wow, how amazing is it to be apart of all of this?”, to be around world class athletes all weekend, sharing memories that others were not able to partake in and then the overall emotional part of the fact that I deserved every minute of that moment because I qualified four times to be there.

Describe your favorite on-course element.
I thought all the obstacles were challenging in their own way, but yet each one was so different to bring out the athletes different strengths. Everyones fitness level is different and I think that this is needed at a World Championship level. Tying the obstacles in with the venue and environment, you could not have asked for a more perfectly challenging event.

Has your view of “Life’s Better When Battled” been affected by this experience?
Life’s Better When Battled couldn’t have been more fitting for the entire weekend. The challenge of continuing to press on after defeat of an obstacle as well as the incline of the hill’s and leg cramping. For me it was a battle both mentally and physically. The mental aspect was not beating myself up after not being able to complete an obstacle and realizing what I MUST do to change this for next year’s Championship. The physical aspect was knowing i was strong enough to carry myself through the entire race, but being able to adjust with the different types of terrain that the course had on it.

What advice would you give to others wanting to compete next year?
The advice I would give is find the biggest mountain/hill and learn to run, hike or fast walk. I was shocked at the number of inclines that the course had and the number of athletes that were walking/hiking up the hill. Then whole time I was fast walking/hiking I kept thinking “How in the world does Lindsey Webster run all the way up these?” Another bit of advice would be to myself as well…grip strength. Over half of the obstacles require grip strength to be able to complete them.

How does an International event like this compare to a typical weekend OCR event?
This year’s OCRWC felt like an olympic event. It’s so hard to describe if you were not there to experience the “feel” of the athlete village. The athletes were all given name badges (sort of like a press pass), so you could tell what country they were from and as well their name. It was an amazing feeling being around the world class athletes and realizing that you were part of this event too. I have been to a bunch of weekend OCR events, but the feeling from OCRWC was one that I will never forget.

Do you have a unique perspective that you took from this event that you would like to share?
My perspective of the weekend all centered around the fact that no matter how good or not so good you were at the obstacles and the terrain, there was always a complete stranger around you cheering you on, other athletes giving you moral support and other athletes willing to help you at any given moment. There was never a moment that I felt alone, that’s the best part about the OCR community.


Posted in OCR Industry News