The Battlegrounds, St. Louis’ largest permanent mud run obstacle course, will hold its ninth bi-annual race. Runners can select to destroy either a 5k or five-mile mud run where they will experience the demands of more than 30 military-themed obstacles for those who want to test their physical and mental abilities.
The Battlegrounds is St. Louis’ only permanent qualifying event venue for the Obstacle Course Racing World Championships (OCRWC). Runners can qualify for their upcoming international race, which is scheduled for Oct. 13 through 15, 2017 in Blue Mountain, Ontario.
Unlike its competition, The Battlegrounds features plenty of freebies including free spectator admission so guests can watch their loved ones from many course vantage points. Free parking, free gear check and a free kids’ mud zone area for children 12 and under are available, as well as the unusual amenity of on-site showers for mud run participants. Post-event activities include individual and group award presentations, a festival area with food and drinks, and walkable access to the adjacent Cedar Lake Cellars winery.
The run’s obstacles, which vary each year to ensure new challenges, include the signature Torpedo Launcher, a 100-foot water slide that empties into a 12-foot deep water pit. Other highlights include The Gauntlet, which is six lanes of varying difficulties situated over an eight-foot deep water pit. The Battlegrounds incorporates all types of terrains including creeks, woods, fields and valleys that add to the intense level of competition.
Proceeds and a canned food drive held at the mud run will benefit Operation Food Search (OFS), a hunger relief organization that provides food and nutrition education. Founded in 1981, OFS helps feed more than 200,000 individuals on a monthly basis – one-third of which are children – through a network of 330 community partners in 31 Missouri and Illinois counties, as well as in the city of St. Louis.
The Battlegrounds will work with the ShoeCrew to collect racer’s shoes. This local organization was founded in 2008 to provide safe water, as well as sanitation and hygiene training to communities who thirst, in developing countries. The ShoeCrew keeps 25 tons of usable shoes out of our local landfills each month. The revenue generated from this shoe collection will help fund a new well in Kashongi Village, Uganda.
The Battlegrounds will host an exclusive wave designated for elite runners to race others with similar abilities. The 8 a.m. wave is limited to the first 250 runners who can maintain an 8 minute 30-second mile pace. Awards are presented to the top three individuals for their gender in the 18 to 30, 31 to 41, and 41 and older age groups.