This year I wanted to compete in more BattleFrog Series OCR events, but didn’t get to participate in as many as I’d like to have done. Still, I managed to make it out to the much-vaunted Pittsburgh location, which has the usual BattleFrog (BFS) complement of obstacles and terrain, but includes the unique “Mine Swim” — a trudging through spring-fed mine waters that are anywhere from hip- to chest-deep and no more than 4ºC/40ºF. In fact, while I’m on that topic, the air in the mines was so cold that as soon as you entered them you started having the added trouble of seeing where you’re going because the mines’ air was so cold that your breath came out in a burst of steam and fogged up your vision. This is in August, mind you. Anyway, a this event I managed to not only keep my Elite Masters wrist-band throughout both laps (and two swims in that mine!), but I finished in 7th place for my Age Group (Masters 40-44), which automatically qualified me for the BFS World Championships in Orlando! Wo0t!
So, that brings us up to speed on how I qualified and decided to run the BFSWC. The event was to take place in Orlando (actually, Sorrento), just a 45-minute drive from Walt Disney World. I have seven children, as many of you know, and we haven’t been to WDW since 2008, so we were overdue. Besides, at least two of my children have never been, so they need their Mickey Ears!
Well, it was now a full on race-cation!
The event was world class, as you’d hope, and BattleFrog had recently just announced that they were the title sponsors for the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl this year, so there was a lot of excitement leading up to this race. While the festival area could’ve been more “spectator friendly”, the accessibility of the course overall was very spectator friendly which is probably just as important for friends & families looking to catch a glimpse of their racer in action.
The obstacles included much of what you’d expect from BFS, if you’ve raced any of their events. The cargo net was built on a better frame than the previous wooden ones (it was metal rigging this time), and the monkey bars were a fun challenge. These monkey bars went up and down, sawtooth style, but the bars weren’t fixed–they were placed inside of oval-shaped holes which allowed the bars to move back and forth, up and down, and rotate. That’s fun! Especially when wet.
The biggest obstacle, literally and figuratively, was the addition of an 80′ long Platinum Rig as obstacle #31 (of 32). Per lap. Eighty feet. Yes, it was a monster. And it was fun! Sure, it took out many racers, taken both their pride and their bands (and mine), but it was still awesome. Made for a great time.
All-in-all I loved this event, and I’m looking forward to doing more BattleFrog Series events in 2016. I completed three this year (2015; in Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Orlando), and I hope to do 5-6 more next season. I may jump into the BFX side of things once or twice, just for fun!
See you in 2016!!!