After each mud run or obstacle race I compete in, you'll get my review and grades for each event to help you decide which ones you might want to sign up for. The following categories will be discussed:

1. COURSE- the design, venue, and setup of the race itself- how creative/ adventurous/ difficult the obstacles were, and obviously... how was the MUD?!?

2. FESTIVAL- all the fun beyond the actual race- the social atmosphere which usually includes food, beer garden, dj/ music/ concert, contests, vendors, and more during the after-party

3. SWAG- the included goodie bag and prizes up for grabs- all the "free" stuff that comes with price of entry and the quality of awards, shirts, and other giveaways

Feel free to use the search box to read up on any past topics you might be looking for.


I wanted to give it a day to soak in, read all the Facebook chatter, get friends' opinions, and process my thoughts around this race before finally tackling the Report on my second Superhero Scramble of the year (and ever).  I had done their midlevel "Intimidator" race in Florida in May, and was anxious to see how their shorter "Charger" event in my home state would compare.  Despite several bits of concerning news rolling out in the few months before the event, it was again well worth the trip (took the same amount of time to fly to FL as it did to drive to upstate NY- that damn Bronx traffic!).

1. COURSE-  The race was originally supposed to take place at Tuxedo Ridge, home of Spartan Race's hugely popular Tri-State Sprint each June, but the resort broke contract (read: SR perhaps pressed them about the conflict?) and forced Superhero to scramble to find another location with only months to go.  Plattekill Mountain signed on, but adding another 1.5+ hours to the drive from NY metro area and points South convinced many to skip out or transfer to another race date. Either way, this was hands down the toughest course I have done this year, mainly due to the surprising elevation on this smaller Catskill mountain ski resort, and Superhero's use of every inch of it.  Some might complain that there weren't enough obstacles over the 6.1 miles of torturous hills and steep descents, or those with "inclinophobia" (yes, I think I made that word up) would hate this race due to the one especially brutal ski trail in reverse, a straight 1/2 mile hike of 1500' elevation from bottom to top. But at least no one could be disappointed with the final stretch which had a 15' rope climb, a high ledge jump into a pool below, the legendary mixed climb tower to a steep/fast water slide, and one last barbed wire crawl toward the finish. Everything you could ask for.  Grade = A

2. FESTIVAL- For the space and layout available, not a bad show.  Lots of grassy spots to park it with your free beer, but not much elsewhere to get out of the sun and eat/sleep/relax.  The race course took several passes by the spectator areas, though neither start or finish were directly at the central party zone.  A live band shared time with a DJ playing from a second floor balcony of the base lodge, where the awards ceremony was also held.  There was BBQ food for sale, including burgers, hotdogs, veggie wraps, etc, but it was a little on the pricey end. Nothing spectacular was going on, and not quite the afterparty they held in their Florida race.  Grade = B

3. SWAG- What is that odd collection of toys in the picture, you ask? Well, those are "my version" of the team awards we were supposed to have been presented with for winning 1st place overall team, as this was originally advertised as a "Scramble Gamble" event with major prizes on the line ($2000 and giant superhero trophy for the top team!).  So as I alluded to in the intro, the second displeasing announcement was that they had downgraded the elite heat to a "Competitive Wave" only, meaning lesser awards for everyone- teams and individuals.  Even so, their own website still states that trophies are presented, but only individuals were given small plaques and teams got nothing.  Being that the elites had also paid an extra $30 to run in that wave, there was no excuse to change their rules, which were presumably based upon the low turnout (and revenue?).  So instead, much smaller prizes were given in "Superbucks" gift certificates, redeemable for more SS merchandise.  Not a terrible gesture, but nowhere near what everyone was told months prior. The standard issue finisher swag was on par, with both green shirt and medal getting you another third of the way toward their trifecta (as Spartan does) known as the Superhero Legend.  Unfortunately, the last piece of the puzzle is their one longer "Villain" race in IL next month which I cannot attend.  Grade = B*
* = due in part to my personal disappointment in the awards situation, though I am in contact with Sean "Ace" O'Connor (founder, CEO) to see if the situation will be rectified.