By Pete Williams
The course will be 4.47 miles long, less than half the distance of Tough Mudder. But it would be a mistake, says Geno Stopowenko, the vice president of marketing for Dirty Foot Adventures, to think the Dirty Foot event will be easy or any less unique.
Obstacle races have exploded in the last 18 months but this might be the first instance where the property owner has put on a race. Stopowenko says Dirty Foot was inspired to stage its own event after leasing the facility last fall to Iron Crusader, which drew a modest 1,500 athletes and was regarded as a less-than-impressive event. (Dirty Foot had nothing to do with the production of that race.)
Since Dirty Foot routinely puts on big-time ATV and dirt-bike events it made sense, Stopowenko said, to stage its own race. Dirty Foot, which opened in June of 2010, is an offroad motorsports park with plenty of dirt bike obstacles that runners can navigate. There’s a 300-foot sand drag strip, a 1.5-mile MX track, obstacle course, zip line, rope swings, and a large mudpit.
“We have a lot of stuff already in place and since it’s our facility it’s sort of like having home field advantage,” Stopowenko said. “We know this property inside and out and while we’re excited to have Tough Mudder here in December, we’re going to be able to provide some obstacles unlike any seen in other races.”
The race will begin with athletes navigating parts of the 1.5-mile dirt bike course that includes 20-foot obstacles. There will be a challenge called “Fall In Feet,” a 15-foot jump into water; and a “Watermelon Crawl,” where athletes slither through a tunnel full of hundreds of crushed watermelon. Given the property’s core business, there will be plenty of culverts and tires involved in the course.
The Dirty Foot property features numerous creeks that are several feet deep. They will figure prominently in the course, which will have roughly 30 obstacles: 20 manmade and 10 natural. There will be a swim obstacle, though non-swimmers can substitute a combination of pushups, sit-ups, and jumping jacks.
“We want to make it unappealing,” Stopowenko said.
After the June 9 event, Dirty Foot will open the property for training during certain weekends. “We also plan to host three or four obstacle races a year,” Stopowenko said. “Between our races, Tough Mudder, and having it open for training, we want to be the premier destination for obstacle racing.”
Registration for Dirty Foot is open at IMAthlete.com.