Written by Margaret Schlachter
Atlas Race is a newcomer to the sport of OCR, but it is doing everything right in terms of getting the competition there. I headed to Temecula, California to see how this race stacked up to the more known races such as Spartan Race. It was only two weeks from my ultra marathon at Fuego y Agua in Nicaragua and a week from a camping trip full of trail exploration in Moab. My first race since September which had not been an ultra. The 3-5 mile course on Saturday and the 7-9 mile course on Sunday felt short compared to the last couple of months of 50K+ distances.
The field was stacked on Saturday with the top women in the sport traveling the all over the US and beyond. Several countries were represented and on the men’s side notable runner Max King was taking a stab at OCR along with all the top men. Saturday’s race included a mile+ long 60lb sandbag carry as well as 12 foot walls, hill climbs, and tire flips. I finished out the day in 15th place in the elite women’s field.
Sunday, I returned to race the longer course which consisted of the short course plus extra loops. Luckily we had no sandbag carry as that proved to be a leg burner. Sunday the temps were warmer in the mid 80′s and the track as dusty. I managed to run a better race on Sunday finishing as the 2nd fastest woman for the day in both the elite and open fields. A highlight on Sunday was passing a woman who was running her first race on the short course and coaching her as I was passing her on how to tackle the next cargo net obstacle. She thanked me as she panted, making it a great day overall.
It was a welcome jump back into the shorter distances after a string of long races.”