While this is my first Mud/Adventure event, I felt that the Gladiator Rock n’ Run set the bar high! A challenging course, fun obstacles, lots of mud, and a great atmosphere leads me to want to attend more events like this!
Pre-race: Packet Pickup was a bit of an issue. It was held at RoadRunner Sports. Parking was limited there and it seemed as though EVERYONE was trying to get their packet at the same time. Once I finally found a parking spot, I waited for about 20 minutes to get my bib. If I had known that packet pickup would occur at the event as well, I would have just waited. Nonetheless, once at the event, everything would turn around. Race day parking was good, with a bus to transport people to the event and back to the parking lot.
Before the start of the event, Dan Clark was among the crowd meeting and greeting. He mentioned that the course was extended from 5k to 4 miles. I was a bit worried at first since this was my first mud run, but I shrugged it off. People were sent off in waves. I was signed up for the 9am wave and 8:30am was the first wave. Unfortunately, there were too many people in this wave, so they sent off the people in three separate groups. Once I finally went, this lead to a bit of a hang up at the start of the course.
Course: Initially, the course was a single file path. Due to the issue with the amount of people stated above, I could only walk at the beginning. It wasn’t until the third obstacle that the course opened up and allowed me to run freely. Beyond that, the course was fantastic! The water was freezing, the mud was thick and slippery, the walls were high and required a lot of strength to climb, and everything fit in with the layout of the landscape. The final obstacle, hurdling over fire logs, was a great way to finish the event as I sprinted and hopped through the finish line.
Post-race: The post-race energy was high as everyone was excited from finishing the course while those waiting to race were thrilled by seeing the mud covered finishers. The music was pretty good, the live band covered various rock artists and sounded like the originals. The DJ played some great tunes as well. Participants got one free beer from Karl Strauss, and there was an eclectic selection of local San Diego high end food trucks. Dan Clark wandered among the participants, meeting and greeting, taking photos, and asking everyone what they thought of the course and if it met their expectations.
Overall: The Gladiator Rock ‘n Run was well put together with an excellent course (despite one small issue) and a great post-race celebration. If this event can work out the small kinks with the pre-race issues, I would definitely sign up to run again and see if I can do even better!