What happens when a hardcore Obstacle Course Racing (OCR) fan and athlete designs his own race? I went down to Mythic Race, put on by William Shell (a former pro track runner who transitioned to OCR athlete) to find out. Here’s how the race stacks up against other race brands in the Midwest and nationwide.
Obstacles: What you need to know about Mythic Race up front is the obstacles are awesome. It was like someone took all of your favorite OCR World Championships (OCRWC) obstacles and mashed them up together. Some favorites included:
-La Gaffe (2x poles) into Dragon’s Back
-Race Ready Obstacle low rig
-Wind Chimes PVC pipe traverse
-Skitch that was 2/3 traverse wall and 1/3 skitch
-Race Ready Obstacles Rig with an under halfway through
-A Unique Rotating Bar Rig Obstacle (see picture below)….which was my favorite
-An archery obstacle
This was in addition to a mix of low walls, high walls, short sandbag carry, short bucket carry, short farmers carry, stadium steps, rope climb, Tarzan swing, low cross, slant walls, hurdle obstacle, short A-frame and more. The course was dense with obstacles keeping your mind focused on the next challenge at hand.
Format: The race had a 5k Elite, 5k Open and 5-hour Ultra option. There were race options regardless of your experience or skill level.
Rules/Placing: I’ve been friends with Will for a couple of years and watched him go from struggling on all the technical grip obstacles at OCR World Championships to keeping his band at every race over the weekend. I bring this up because he knows what it’s like to go from struggling to keeping your band, so I was curious to see the rules he would provide for placement. The race is a good mix of mandatory obstacle completion but not leaving podium spots or placement empty. Essentially whoever does all the obstacles the fastest wins but if you fail an obstacle, it automatically puts you lower than anyone who did all the obstacles regardless of your time. The same applies if you fail multiple obstacles (someone who failed 1x will be higher placed than someone that failed 3x obstacles). For the five-hour endurance option, 20 hand-release pushups were the penalty for obstacle failure, which was needed since those obstacles added up on the later laps.
Swag: The swag was great for participants and epic if you could land 1st place in any of the divisions. Finisher medals were their dragon skull logo and if you podiumed in Age Group you got an appropriately colored additional medal in a slightly different design (bronze, silver, or gold). If you won 5k or the 5 hour race you got a huge banner that says Mythic Race Champion on it! I absolutely love it. However, the best prizes were for the largest team (a gold dragon skull) and the fastest team, which required competitors in all four categories of competition. The fastest team got a massive 30 lbs. dragon skull, a sword, and an amazing display stand. Do you want your chance to take this monstrosity home? You’ll have to show up in 2024, tentatively scheduled for April 13th.
Overall: While OCR seems to be on the decline in some areas, there are still hidden gems out there. Mythic Race is one of them. If you want OCRWC quality obstacles built by some of the people that design the championship (Race Ready Obstacles) with a community/family-friendly event that is great to watch, you need to head out to Mythic Race. The price point is a fraction of the cost for the World Championship and honestly might be one of the best prepatory races available. Easily 5/5 stars and something I plan on keeping on my race calendar in the future.