It’s a one day race scheduled to host over 10,000 participants with the finish line marked by a line of fire.
That’s the scenario Bill Hawthorn, Business Development and Sponsorship for Spartan Race Inc. set for March 19 in Mesquite in a recent interview with the Mesquite Local News.
“It’s an eight mile race course with about 25 obstacles and will take some participants four to six hours to complete. It tests every fiber of your body, mind, and spirit,” Hawthorn explained. “We’re now producing 53 races in the United States and 83 more in 32 countries around the world. Spartan Race is the world’s largest competitive obstacle racing series in the world”
Video on the Spartan Race website indeed shows a race course far from the normal flat, straight, paved, and boring route.
These races take the runners through desert terrain, up and down dusty hills, through mud bogs, and under barbed wire. Yes, barbed wire. Did we mention the rope ladders and 20 foot straight-up walls the runners have to navigate? And, at one point, everyone has to carry big buckets of rocks and sand.
It’s not your every day run in the park.
Even though the race carries a “Las Vegas Super’ moniker, it will actually take place at the Mesquite MX park and Hafen Ranch on the east side of the Palms Golf Course.
“We need about 400 acres to lay out the race course with all its obstacles and accommodate parking for about 3,000 cars, a festival area and a vendor village,” Hawthorn said. “We held the race on BLM land near Las Vegas last year but found we prefer to work with private land owners.”
“Our first race time is scheduled for Saturday morning at 7:30 a.m. for the Elite Men class and 7:45 a.m. for Elite Women. After that we’ll release waves to 250 racers every 15 minutes throughout the morning,” Hawthorn explained. “We’ll start our afternoon race times at 11:15 a.m. until all the runners are off.”
He doesn’t expect all runners to spend the night before in Mesquite. “Most of our participants will stay in Las Vegas on Friday night and travel up to Mesquite Saturday morning. We’re encouraging a lot of them to carpool.”
Even with that, Hawthorn expects about 3,000 cars coming off I-15 on their way to the racing venue. “Most of the cars will park near the rodeo grounds at the top of the hill,” he said. “But, we do know that we’ll have to work on those logistics.”
Sponsored by Reebok, Spartan Races take place in Sacramento, Salt Lake City, and even the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, TX. Individuals and teams can participate with many events televised on NBCSN and NBC.
Hawthorn says he is looking for local volunteers, sponsors, and vendors. “There is no way we can put together a successful, exciting and great community experience without local help. We are specifically looking for sponsors, exhibitors and corporate teams. Anyone who is interested can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll also be spending quite a bit of time in Mesquite during the next two months working on the event so I’ll have an opportunity to meet with people and businesses face-to-face.”
And yes, all racers have to jump a line of fire to mark the end of their most unusual run.