Tough Mudder Introduces Their 2018 Pro Team/Competitive Series

12:20pm Update – Here is the podcast interview.

In September of 2017, TMHQ announced the first ever Tough Mudder Pro Team. Ryan Atkins, Lindsay Webster, Hunter McIntyre and Stef Bishop had already been featured on most of TM’s online content, so few were surprised.  Today, the 2018 team is being announced much sooner in the year. TMHQ revealed this morning that Ryan, Lindsay, and Hunter are all coming back, and they have added two more women. The first is Corinna Coffin. Corinna had been mostly dormant in OCR since BattleFrog folded in the fall of 2016. She came back last July to win the first ever Tough Mudder X.

The second woman is Allison Tai. Along with being the favorite guest of The World’s Toughest Podcast, Allison won last year’s Holy Grail Leaderboard (Total competitive miles) with 305 total miles. Stef Bishop is not returning to the team. Stef won World’s Toughest Mudder in 2016, then had a relatively disappointing 2017 Tough Mudder season.

Matt B. Davis spoke to TMHQ’s Eli Hutchison and Corinna Coffin to discuss some of the news. The podcast episode will be released later today, so be sure to download it so you can listen to it on your next run.

Matt and Eli will be talking about the evolution of the competitive series. Many Mudders enjoyed the Tougher and Toughest events in 2017, as well as Tough Mudder X and World’s Toughest Mudder. Tough Mudder is now calling these events, Fittest, Fastest, and Toughest, with the culmination being World’s Toughest Mudder on November 10th and 11th in Atlanta, Georgia.

Check out the video introducing the different championship series here!

Photo Credits: Tough Mudder

TOUGH MUDDER LAUNCHES NEW 5K EVENT SERIES

 

5K to Turn Running Into a Team Sport – Provides ‘Taste of Tough’ by Featuring 10 World-Class Obstacles on Course

 

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK (February 8, 2018) – Tough Mudder, Inc. the leading global sports, active lifestyle, and media brand, announced today it will debut its newest event series, Tough Mudder 5K at more than 25 event weekends in 2018. The company’s expansion into the 5K distance is designed to meet the growing demand of people who are attracted to mud runs as well as to serve as an entry point to obstacle challenges. Tickets are available for purchase online at ToughMudder.com for as low as $49.

In response to overwhelming demand, Tough Mudder is also launching 5K events globally in 2018 in more than five countries including Germany, Canada, The United Kingdom, Philippines, Oman, the United States, and more. This 3.1-mile event will provide a fun, easily accessible yet rewarding challenge. Requiring minimal to no training, the 5K will feature 10 famous Tough Mudder obstacles, excluding the more extreme elements, like ice and electricity found in Tough Mudder’s signature 10-mile event.

“Tough Mudder is setting the new standard of excellence in 5K events. So many runners and outdoor enthusiasts are not being challenged or excited by ordinary fun runs, 5K/10K races, and half marathons. The Tough Mudder 5K provides a taste of tough – taking your 5K experience to the next level – all while providing empowering moments after completing obstacles and helping fellow weekend warriors,” said Will Dean, CEO & Co-founder, Tough Mudder, Inc. “With the 5K, we can welcome even more Mudders into the global Tough Mudder tribe – from people who have never tried an event and want a flavor of our infamous camaraderie to well-seasoned Mudders who would like to try new obstacles and bring friends.”

 

Participants of all fitness levels will tackle iconic obstacles such as Everest 2.0, a slick quarter pipe more than 15 feet tall; Mud Mile, 10+ deep pits of mounded mud; Berlin Walls, a wall more than nine feet tall; and Happy Ending, a 25 feet tall slippery slide guaranteed to make you. Happy Ending is also the physical embodiment of the organization’s 2018 yearlong “Tougher Together” brand platform.

Dedicated to the development of new products and entry points that enable millions of people to be part of Mudder Nation, Tough Mudder 5k demonstrates the company’s commitment towards innovation and dedication to providing an array of unique event offerings for current and potential members of the fast-growing active lifestyle and endurance sports communities.

The new 5K events are on sale now and include a finisher beer, 5K headband, 5K performance finisher t-shirt and event photography. Participants will also have free access to Mudder Village – a festival environment packed with vendors and music. Ticket prices will go up closer to the event date, so those interested are encouraged to buy early. For the full schedule of events, visit toughmudder.com/events/what-is-tough-mudder-5k.

With more than 3 million participants to date across five continents, Tough Mudder has a range of accessible yet rewarding challenges, such as the Tough Mudder 5K, the Tough Mudder Half (five-mile event excluding fire, ice, and electricity), and Tough Mudder Full. For participants who complete more than one of the previously listed events, they will be recognized through the company’s rewards program and will receive a free orange kettlebell collectible, and an exclusive t-shirt.

This year, Tough Mudder, Inc. and its licensees will host an unprecedented 150+ events across nearly a dozen countries, such as the United States, The United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, United Arab Emirates, Canada and two new countries, South Africa, Philippines, welcoming participants worldwide into a global community that lives courage, personal accomplishment, teamwork and fun.

For more information on the Tough Mudder 5K, or to purchase tickets, visit toughmudder.com/events/what-is-tough-mudder-5k.

TM5K 2018 Events Calendar
 

Arizona [SUNDAY ONLY]

March 25

**Missouri [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

August 11 & 12

Sacramento [SATURDAY ONLY]

March 24

**Wisconsin [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 8 & 9

Miami [SATURDAY ONLY]

April 7

**Pittsburgh [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 8 & 9

Central Texas [SUNDAY ONLY]

May 6

Toronto [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 15 & 16

**Philly [SUNDAY ONLY]

May 20

**Nashville [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 15 &16

**Kentucky [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

June 2 & 3

**Seattle [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 22 & 23

**Michigan [SUNDAY ONLY]

June 3

1st MR Central North event, struggling traffic

Dallas Ft. Worth [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

September 29 & 30

**Boston [SUNDAY ONLY]

June 24

New event & TMB 1st opening

Tri-State [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

October 6 & 7

**Twin Cities [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

July 14 & 15

NorCal [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

October 6 & 7

**Long Island [SUNDAY ONLY]

July 22

Bigger event & in MR

Central Florida [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

October 13 & 14

**Western NY [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

August 4 & 5

**Atlanta [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

October 20 &  21

New WTM location

**Hudson Valley [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

August 18 & 19

New event and in 2 MRs

Las Vegas [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

October 20 & 21

**Chicago [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

August 25 & 26

One of our biggest markets

Houston [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

11/3

SoCal [SATURDAY + SUNDAY]

November 3 & 4

About Tough Mudder, Inc.:

Founded in 2010 with the launch of the Tough Mudder obstacle course event series, Tough Mudder Inc. has become a leading global sports, active lifestyle and media brand. With more than 3 million participants, the company hosts more than 130 non-competitive (Mini Mudder; Tough Mudder 5K, Tough Mudder Half, and Tough Mudder Full) and competitive (Tougher, Toughest, Tough Mudder X and World’s Toughest Mudder) events annually in 11 countries including China, Dubai, Indonesia, and Australia through its partnerships with IMG, Seroja and Sports Media and Entertainment 360 (SME360). The company’s content arm provides the more than millions of engaged online brand enthusiasts with fitness, nutrition, and wellness content delivered daily across social and digital platforms. Tough Mudder broadcast, OTT and Live Stream programming can be seen worldwide through partnerships with CBS Sports, Facebook, Sky Sports, The CW Network and ESPN Media Distribution. Other sponsorship and distribution partners include Merrell, Amazon, KILL CLIFF, Jeep, Aflac, Guinness, Vega, Samsung, Olympus, Lucozade Sport, Nexcare, For Goodness Shakes, Bosch, TREK, Head & Shoulders, L’Oreal Men Expert, Käserei Loose, Snapchat and Live Stream.

PR Contacts:
Angela Alfano  (703) 447-5629 Angela.Alfano@ToughMudder.com
Ethan Metelenis (917) 882-9038 Ethan.Metelenis@ToughMudder.com

Gameface Media Moves Ahead While Failing to Pay Photographers

Once upon a time, the only way for you to receive a photo from a recent race (like the one above) was to pay cash to a photography company. Event directors hired said company to take your photo, and they’d mail you that sucker if you paid for it.

As Facebook and smart phones took over, people no longer needed a photo they could frame. Race participants took their own photos, and maybe even posted a mile by mile recap. (If we were unlucky enough to be in their feed). Something needed to change.

Around the same time a new genre (or two) of running event was booming. Races that forced us to get muddy and submerged in water, weren’t great for cell phones. Neither were races that threw paint at us and had us being tackled by zombies. However, those races had the BEST photo opportunities. The documentary, Rise Of The Sufferfests, pointed out that these bad-ass post event photos were one of the largest contributing factors to millions rushing to sign up in the first place. Realizing this,companies like Spartan Race began eating the cost, yet giving post event photos for free as part of their overall consumer experience.

Enter GameFace Media (GF), who in November of 2012 launched their company with a new concept. The business model was to attract business from race companies by give them the lowest industry rates for their photography services. Next, GF would find sponsors to partner with, who would pay to have THEIR logo on the photo in the opposite corner of the race company’s logo. They could do all of this, and charge the customer zero.

This model was revolutionary, and it was working. Company founder David Lavallee sent out the following via email blast on February 6, 2014:

  • As many of you know, I helped to found Gameface in late 2012 to provide free photos to participants in athletic events such as running races, obstacle races, triathlons, skiing and youth sports. We generate revenue by allowing a sponsor to place their logo on every photo and to host the photo download and social media connections on their website or Facebook page.
  • Yes, it’s a very simple concept, but it’s working!
  • We exceeded our goals for our first year of operations and are continuing the momentum as we kick off 2014. Here are a couple of highlights:
  • We covered more than 40 events in 2013, capturing 600,000+ athlete photos
  • We generated nearly 10 million online impressions for our event and brand partners
  • We have covered three of the top five obstacle/mud event series, as well as many running races and triathlons
  • We have expanded beyond our initial endurance events market into new categories like youth sports and CrossFit competitions
  • We partnered with leading brand sponsors including Merrell, City Sports, GU Energy, Harpoon Brewery and Newton Running
  • We acquired Nuvision Action Image and Race Pace Photos – two of the leading event photography companies in the industry
  • We expanded our sales and technology teams and moved into our new corporate headquarters in downtown Boston
  • We are on track to shoot more than 2 million participants in 2014 and will generate more than 100 million social media impressions for our brand sponsors. This will make us the largest provider of free event photos in the country.

GameFace Photographers Feb 2015

Screenshot from GameFace website Feb 2015

For the next two years, the company continued to do well by all appearances. GameFace was acquiring larger and larger clients. These race companies collectively had hundreds of thousands (if not over a million) participants who needed photos. Tough Mudder, Ragnar Relay, Rugged Maniac, Warrior Dash, The San Francisco Marathon, Bay To Breakers, Muckfest to name a few. This is on top of countless other one-off smaller races in markets all over the country.

Fast forward to July of 2016. ORM was made aware of a thread on a photographers forum where various photographers were voicing concerns about GameFace Media. Here is one:

They still owe me literally THOUSANDS of dollars for jobs from over 2 months ago. I could not get anyone to respond for the longest time but finally got a form response from the CTO at Gameface Media that basically said they are out of money and cannot pay their photographers at this time because they are waiting to be paid by their sponsors. An online negative Gameface review from another unpaid said they raised millions from investors during the summers of 2014 and 2015 and that he thought they were out of money because he could not find anything online about them raising money in 2016 and he has not been paid. Marty from Gameface posted in this very thread that they have interested investors. So I am wondering which it is. Are they waiting to be paid by sponsors or are they waiting on more funding? And if their free picture business model has not been profitable in 3 years why would anyone continue investing? Whatever is going on they do not have any working capital at this time and the photographers are suffering because of it. This has caused my family financial hardship.

We reached out to owner David Lavallee at that time, and he was not willing to on the record. He did speak with Runners World, who were doing their own investigation.

David got back to us on Sept 1 of that year and told us the following:

Overall, our core business model is working well at Gameface. We are adding high quality new events and sponsors every week. We have also continued to provide the highest quality event photos in the market with our busiest weekend in Gameface history expected on September 10 and 11.

 We greatly value our relationships with photographers which is why we have always paid the highest hourly rates in the industry and tried to pay people within 15 days of an event. As we grew, however, the logistics of paying that quickly grew unrealistic. This challenge increased earlier this year as we took on a flurry of big new events. This meant we were trying to pay photographers within 15 days of an event while our event and sponsor clients often paid us 90 days after an event. I should have planned better for this and I also should have communicated this better to our photographers. We have always paid everyone what they are owed and always will. As we continued to generate more revenue this summer, our payments are getting back to more reasonable timing. We have also reached out to most of our photographers over the past two weeks to communicate better with them. While we won’t be able to meet our old, unrealistic goal of 15 day payment cycles, we plan to continue paying the highest rates in the industry to attract the best talent available.

We at Obstacle Racing Media continued to monitor this situation, by periodically checking the above message board, a Facebook group created by unpaid contractors. and by speaking with photographers we came in contact with directly at races. The promises from GameFace remained the same, but the payment situation was not improving. In June of 2017, 9 months after the payment problems were first made public, David told ORM the following:

Over each of the past three years we have grown revenue and lowered our operating losses at Gameface. We are on track for our best financial results ever in 2017 and expect to be profitable later this year. Like most start-ups with an innovative business model, we knew that we would lose money before we became profitable. Any time you disrupt an entrenched legacy model by converting to a digital model, it’s expensive. As we have fought our way toward profitability, it was even more expensive than we’d originally expected. That caused us to fall behind on payments to some of our photographers last year. With a recent financing round, we were able to pay off the large majority of what we owed our photographers. We continue to make more payments every week and expect to finish this process soon as we collect fees currently owed from our clients. Our model has allowed us to pay our 1,600 photographers nearly $5,000,000 since we started the company. We typically pay above market rates and offer some of the best assignments in the industry.

By mid 2017, experienced photographers would no longer accept new assignments, no matter how high the rate. Gameface, desperate to keep their doors open, began offering payment in advance for a weekend race event. Many photographers countered with something along the lines  “As long as you pay past debts first, and then pre pay for the current event, I am happy to shoot”. This is typically when communication for GameFace would stop. Being forced to use less experienced photographers has not improved Gameface’s overall situation. When the quality of photos goes down, participants complain to the races they pay for directly. The average racer doesn’t care who you hired to get their photos, they just want good photos. In addition, unpaid photographers took to contacting races and sponsors who do business with GF directly.

As you can find on the aforementioned Facebook group and Fred Miranda page, the situation has remained mostly the same since then. The one difference being that fed up photographers began to take legal action. Many began to take GF to small claims court for services rendered. You can read several posts where contractors were able to collect amounts owed using the legal system to their advantage. One was even able to freeze GF bank account assets until receiving payment.

Meanwhile,  David continues to make promises to photographers. Here is an email that photographer Jim Auer posted on Nov 26, 2017.

Jim,

I am very sorry for the long-delayed payment and slow response to your emails. We have made good progress on our finances this year and are no longer losing money every month. We have been chipping away at our photographer debt, but I realize that isn’t much consolation to you since you have been waiting so long. We are on the verge of a round of financing that will be used to make payments to all of you. We expect to close that round by the end of this year. In the meantime, we have had to prioritize payments to photographers who are covering events for us every weekend. This has meant that our older obligations have gotten more delayed. I know that isn’t fair, but we needed to make that hard decision to allow Gameface to survive.

I would be happy to give you a call to answer any questions you may have. I try to have a couple of calls like that per day. It makes for slow progress, but it results in a much better dialogue than email or social media. Please let me know if you have some time over the next few business days.

Regards,

David

David Lavallee

CEO & Co-Founder

Gameface Media Inc.

m. 617-901-7172

The TL;DR verson is this:

We are really close to getting funded again, and this time, we promise, we’ll pay everyone, promise.

Two sentences however need to be highlighted:

“In the meantime, we have had to prioritize payments to photographers who are covering events for us every weekend.”

Put another way: If you continue working for us we’ll pay you what we already you, if you don’t work for us, we will not pay you what we already promised we would.

At best, this is bad business. At worse, this is employee extortion.

“This has meant that our older obligations have gotten more delayed. I know that isn’t fair, but we needed to make that hard decision to allow Gameface to survive”.

At best and worst, this is an employment ponzi scheme.

This morning, GameFace Media published a press release, announcing additional funding from a company called Stage 1 Ventures. We contacted Stage 1 Managing Director, David William Baum, by phone and email and at press time, have not had a response.

OCRWC Founder Launches a New Organization for Races and Athletes

Adrian Bijanada, whom you may remember as the man behind the OCR World Championships and its sister event the North American OCR Championships, has announced the start of an organization that will support the sport and its participants. The American Obstacle Course Racing Association is intended to be a democratic and transparent group that will offer members tangible benefits, such as race discounts, as well as support for the sport, such as scholarships and access to drug testing at smaller races.

AOCRA is not to be confused with any of the alphabet soup of organizations that have sprung up since OCR took off. Unlike USAOCR and IOSF, it is not intended to be a governing body. “We’re not telling people how deep to dig a ditch or how high to build a wall,” he explained. Rather, he hopes to pick up where the IORCU left off and address the needs of athletes and races to help the sport grow. Since the national and international governing bodies appear to be concentrating on adding OCR to the Olympics, there is plenty of work to be done to keep the sport growing in other ways.

Adrian has a good track record for seeing what OCR needs, setting up a framework and following through. He wants to get many people involved, and he hopes that the community will drive the priorities and the actions that AOCRA pursues. If the success of the OCRWC is anything to go by, this is an organization to watch. In the meantime, I’m proposing that we all pronounce it “A-Okra”, like the vegetable.

American Obstacle Course Association Launches

New York, NY (January 30, 2018) – Today saw the official launch of the American Obstacle Course Racing Association (AOCRA), a cooperative organization with the goal of developing and supporting the sport of Obstacle Course Racing (OCR) and its participants within the United States.

The American Obstacle Course Racing Association (AOCRA) is a not-for-profit organization created by a group of companies, individuals, and supporters of the American obstacle course racing community. Through community engagement, its goal is to unite, support, and grow the sport of OCR while establishing a foundation built upon unity, transparency, and partnership.

AOCRA is a membership-based community which will issue athlete development and health care grants, expand anti-doping efforts and testing, support charitable initiatives, and offer an array of benefits for its members, including discounted entry to races, special offerings from AOCRA partners, training camps, and onsite perks at select events. Additionally, a national point series, results platform, and ranking system is planned for mid-2018.

Athlete Members will be asked to adhere to an Athlete Code of Conduct (ACC), which requires that members practice good sportsmanship, clean (drug-free) racing, and uphold a number of other organizational values.

At present, the following organizations have elected to participate in AOCRA:

North American OCR Championships
Green Beret Challenge
Indian Mud Run
Terrain Race
FIT Challenge
BoneFrog Challenge
City Challenge Race
Epic Series Obstacle Challenge
Blizzard Blast
Epic Hybrid Training
Yancy Camp

Governance of the organization will follow a decentralized model supported by race organization voting members as well as an athlete guidance board. To become a member or get involved visit: .

Savage Race Launches “Savage Blitz”

SAVAGE RACE LAUNCHES NEW “SAVAGE BLITZ” RACE PRODUCT

January 22, 2018 – Florida based company Mad Cap Events, LLC, owners of the popular “Savage Race” obstacle race series opened registration yesterday for a new race product called Savage Blitz. Savage Blitz is a 3-mile obstacle course race to complement Savage Race’s original 5-7 mile format. Savage Blitz features many of the Savage Race signature obstacles participants have come to know and love over a shorter distance.

Initially, Savage Blitz opens in four select markets in 2018, but with plans to expand to more locations in 2019, and possibly late 2018. The first four Blitz events will occur on Sundays at existing Savage Race venues.

“This was something that has been heavily requested by participants. There is a lot of interest from folks who aren’t quite ready for a 5-7 mile Savage Race, so we created a race product that would be better for a beginning OCR athlete. Savage Blitz is also going to be a lot of fun for experienced athletes who want to run a faster course. Fifteen to twenty obstacles is a lot to pack into a 3-mile course, so I think people are going to have a lot of fun with this!” – Sam Abbitt, Savage Race

Savage Blitz registration opened yesterday at 1 pm eastern.

Tickets and information are available here.

Savage Blitz Opening Calendar

Maryland – Sunday, May 6th, 2018
Charlotte – Sunday, May 20th, 2018
Ohio – Sunday, June 10th, 2018
Chicago – Sunday, July 29th, 2018

*More dates TBA

 

Tough Mudder Unveils New 2018 Obstacles

TOUGH MUDDER UNVEILS 2018 NEW OBSTACLES

 

3+ Million Participants to Receive a ‘Happy Ending’ on Biggest Challenge in Obstacle Course Racing History

 

BROOKLYN, NY (January 11, 2018) – Famous for the company’s epic Innovation Lab, Tough Mudder Inc., the leading sports, active lifestyle and media brand, announced today its revolutionary twist on obstacles for the 2018 event season by unveiling the biggest structure to ever hit the obstacle course racing industry, Happy Ending, presented by Merrell, and Kong Infinity, the first obstacle in company history to be designed by members of the global tribe of more than 3 million Mudders. The company also revealed the iconic “Vault” obstacles (previously retired) coming back to course in 2018.

 

A physical embodiment of the organization’s 2018 yearlong “Tougher Together” campaign, Happy Ending is the new Tough Mudder Finisher Obstacle requiring teamwork by participants of all levels. Sitting at nearly 25 feet tall and over 80 feet wide and 100 feet long, it marks the biggest structure ever featured on course. To complete Happy Ending, participants must climb and push their way up an angled structure (40 degrees) creating human pyramids as they ladder over one another up multiple slippery inclines. At the summit, participants then dive feet-first down a 30 foot slide into a water pit.

Dedicated to the development of new products and entry points that enable millions of people to be part of Mudder Nation, Happy Ending brings participants together no matter the person’s athletic ability, the number of events run or event (Tough Mudder Full 10 miles; or Tough Mudder Half 5 miles). Teamwork and camaraderie – the Tough Mudder spirit – will be felt as participants cross the Finish line together.

 

Tough Mudder is an inclusive brand committed to connecting people. As a global tribe, we break down social barriers such as race, religion and politics. By using our sport as a vehicle for change, our events highlight the everyday heroes and elite athletes who together bring positive transformation worldwide,” said Will Dean, Tough Mudder, Inc. CEO and Co-Founder. “We look forward to welcoming thousands of new and returning participants to Mudder Nation in 2018 to face these challenges together – from completing the best-in-class obstacles on course to overcoming issues off. We remain dedicated to engineering ways to challenge our participants, both physically and mentally, all while giving millions of people a ‘Happy Ending’ and creating an exciting environment that showcases how we are stronger when we are united.

 

Happy Ending replaces the infamous Electroshock Therapy (EST) obstacle in which participants ran through dangling electrified wires. Although EST is “retiring” as a finisher challenge, it will transition to the Tough Mudder Full (10-mile) course and will be optional for all participants via bypass lanes – as not all are ready to get shocked with 10,000 volts.

 

Participants who are looking for a new shocking challenge may choose to exit Happy Ending by sliding down Third Rail – the bonus electricity challenge featuring more than 10,000 volts hanging from wires on a 30-foot slide into a pit of water. This optional challenge is for the bravest of all participants. Those not wishing to give it a shock – shot – may slide down the regular Happy Ending exit.

 

Tough Mudder is making a concerted effort to invest in Tough Mudder Half to provide accessible, yet rewarding experiences, to so many runners and outdoor enthusiasts who are not being challenged or excited by ordinary runs or half marathons,” said Dean. “From people who have never tried a mud run to seasoned Legionnaires who would like to bring friends, the Tough Mudder Half events serve as unique entry points to the world of obstacle course races and exclude the more extreme elements like fire and ice, in addition to making electricity completely optional. Tough Mudder’s commitment to innovation and dedication to enhance short distance challenges further positions the company as a global leader in the active lifestyle and sports categories.

Kong-Infinity – Obstacle Design Challenge Winning Obstacle

2018 marks the first year a Tough Mudder Obstacle Design Challenge winning innovation will be featured on course globally. A literal “spin” off of the iconic Kong obstacle, Kong Infinity is engineered to test even the most experienced Tough Mudders by being one of the most technically challenging obstacles on course. Requiring upper body strength and agility, participants start by climbing a 15-foot structure to reach a barrel which has handles fixed around its circumference on a set of tracks suspended more than 20 feet off the ground. By using momentum, participants rotate the barrel along the tracks to the other side. Kong-Infinity was designed by Ross Munro and Jonny McDonald of Glasgow, U.K.

For the first time since its inception in 2016, Kong, the giant, 30-foot obstacle in which participants swing like Tarzan, traversing from one floating ring to another, will be featured on the Tough Mudder Full course where everyone will have the opportunity to conquer this massive challenge.

 

Tough Mudder Vault

To celebrate Tough Mudder’s long and epic history of obstacle innovation, the company wants Mudder Nation to select which obstacles will return to course in 2018. The company unveiled the 25 historic obstacles Mudder Nation may vote on today through Friday, Jan. 26 at ToughMudder.com/obstacles. The winning “Vault” obstacles will be unveiled Feb. 5 with two-to-three historic challenges featured on every course in 2018 giving participants the chance to relive their favorite classics or for new Mudders, the chance to experience the best obstacles Tough Mudder has had to offer. A full list of the 25 obstacles is available online at ToughMudder.com/obstacles.

As an upgrade to the Vault obstacles for Legionnaires, participants who have completed multiple events, every course will have mystery vault features designed specifically for the Mudder Legion that include unique, never-before-seen modifications and design elements. Another Legionnaire-only obstacle coming to course is T-Boned – an added challenge to the classic Skidmarked, a slanted 10-foot wall. Participant’s upper body strength will be put to the test with an added twist of a 90-degree horizontal ledge to overcome 9 feet off the ground.

 

3 Million Mudders

With more than 3 million participants to date across five continents, Tough Mudder has offerings ranging from accessible yet rewarding challenges, such as Tough Mudder Half (five-mile event excluding fire, ice, and electricity), to competitive events, such as Tough Mudder X (the toughest mile on the planet), and World’s Toughest Mudder (24-hour endurance event).

This year, Tough Mudder, Inc. and its licensees will host an unprecedented 150+ events across nearly a dozen countries, such as the United States, The United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, United Arab Emirates, Canada and two new countries, South Africa, Philippines, welcoming participants worldwide into a global community that lives courage, personal accomplishment, teamwork and fun.

For more information on the 2018 Tough Mudder obstacles, or to purchase tickets to 2018 Tough Mudder events, visit ToughMudder.com.

 

 

About Tough Mudder, Inc.:

Founded in 2010 with the launch of the Tough Mudder obstacle course event series, Tough Mudder Inc. has become a leading global sports, active lifestyle and media brand. With more than 3 million participants, the company hosts more than 130 non-competitive (Mini Mudder; Tough Mudder 5K, Tough Mudder Half, and Tough Mudder Full) and competitive (Tougher, Toughest, Tough Mudder X and World’s Toughest Mudder) events annually in 11 countries including China, Dubai, Indonesia, and Australia through its partnerships with IMG, Seroja and Sports Media and Entertainment 360 (SME360). The company’s content arm provides the more than millions of engaged online brand enthusiasts with fitness, nutrition, and wellness content delivered daily across social and digital platforms. Tough Mudder broadcast, OTT and Live Stream programming can be seen worldwide through partnerships with CBS Sports, Facebook, Sky Sports, The CW Network and ESPN Media Distribution. Other sponsorship and distribution partners include Merrell, Amazon, KILL CLIFF, Jeep, Aflac, Guinness, Vega, Samsung, Olympus, Lucozade Sport, Nexcare, For Goodness Shakes, Bosch, TREK, Head & Shoulders, L’Oreal Men Expert, Käserei Loose, Snapchat and Live Stream.