OCR: The Future


Today we witnessed the death of another OCR organization. Hero Rush now joins the growing list of defunct competitions.  This list includes Hooyah!, Ultimate Mud Run, and other events or series.  Its hard to see the future of this sport when we are constantly hit with negative news time and time again. However, we must remember that all things go through a process of growth, and OCR is no exception. The bankruptcy of Hero Rush and other organizations should not be looked at as loss for the sport but as an opportunity to strengthening the sport as a whole.

As a Hockey fan and former player, I can speak to the evolution of that sport. The WHA was sapped dry by the NHL. Some background: The NHL and WHA both competed for players in the 1970s each offering a different perspective on pay-scale and players rights. In the end, the death of the WHA wasn’t a blow to hockey at all. It allowed the NHL to flourish without competition by creating a single professional hockey league.

Conversely, the sport of boxing is dealing with the strain of too many organizations. Boxing originally had a single crowned champion for each weight class. Over time, the sport has become fragmented with an ever growing number of sanctioning bodies each with it’s own rules and opinions and as a result, their own “champion.” In the end, multiple champions means there is no real winner. So while we may mourn the passing of Hero Rush, we are avoiding the burden of fragmentation.

I believe that we should not look at the departure of an organization within OCR as the end of OCR. As organizations within OCR fade or are absorbed into larger ones, we will begin to consolidate our pool of talent and resources into a more unified community, much like the NHL, while avoiding the pitfalls that have befallen boxing. As Obstacle Course Racers, we are trained to overcome challenges. We will not let OCR disappear. The spirit of the OCR community will ensure that the sport will have a future.  

– R.Josti

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  1. The whole thing with Hero Rush seems to be kind of odd. Just last week they offered the people from Ohio/Pa race a refund and now they are filing Chapter 7..REALLY? I believe something else was going on and this is just a cover up.

  2. I agree that this can strengthen OCR in the long run.

    And Ryan, if you want to know how they calculate the points, lemme know. I’ve got the formula figured out.

  3. The business is tougher than most expect it to be. It looks simple to put up a website, find a host site for the event, and build the mud course. But, the event expenses run high and participant registration comes in slower and lower than anticipated. In the end, profit is elusive. Tricky business…even if you know what you are doing!

  4. Nice article. Very sad to see Hero Rush go as it was my first OCR win. Others will also likely come and go too, but the best (course, customer service, price, venues, locations, timing, marketing plans) will overcome adversity, and we will have some solid companies last a really long time in OCR business.

  5. I’m really surprised more companies don’t go under. THere have got to be pretty slim margins for some of these events. Especially these companies that run Groupons and cant draw big crowds. The expenses definitely add up, but Im glad bigger companies have been picking up sponsors to keep them profitable.


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