New to the OCR scene Rough Events held their first event in 2017, feedback was good, so it only seemed fair to pay them a visit.
I was hoping to do all the distances on offer (5 km, 6 and 10 miles) but the races are spread over a weekend, and I only had one day free, so I opted for Sunday’s 10-mile (16 km) event. With the start being 12:30, it was clear that multiple laps were not an option, so this was going to be a fun run, and as such fun was had.
After registering and short wander around saying hello to friends and familiar faces it was time for the off. The course is pretty flat; this is Lincolnshire after all. However, there is enough terrain variation to challenge the legs. The first couple of kilometres took us through open farmland peppered with obstacles (mud trenches, a short slide and splash pit, crawl nets and walls) helping to spread the field out; then it was into the woods. I was nervous here as I had a history of falling over in woodland and was still nursing a sore ankle from my last tumble at The Nuts Challenge four weeks earlier, however, I paid attention to where my feet were and emerged from the trees unscathed. More farmland followed, until around kilometre four where the course crossed a small lake, I’d been looking forward to this section as rather than a wade/swim across the lake, the organisers had installed a zip-line, and who doesn’t love a zip-line.
As a child I had a father who delighted in building hazardous things, a zip-line was just one of many non-fatal gifts to his children; thinking back this also explains why I have long arms, but I digress. There were two options to the zip-line, hang tight and land on the opposite banking or take advantage of the lake and have a dip, the weather was mild, and I was dirty, so over the allotted spot, I let go and hit the water with style, grace and a wedgie.
Heading away from the lake it was back to farmland and pockets of woodland before arriving at what is lovingly called “The Pit”, an area dedicated to obstacles all done back to back and roughly in this order.
- Rope Traverse – downhill which made for an interesting variation
- Monkey Rings – very slippy due to the rain
- Monkey Bars – also very wet and very challenging
- Zig Zag Wall Traverse – like the primate-themed items, slippy
- Rope Climb – around four meters high with the ubiquitous cowbell at the top
- Slackline Traverse – helpful top rope for those not related to Giovanna Petrucci
- Suspended Tyre Traverse – tyres on ropes, all the fun of the fair
- Giant See Saw – a telegraph pole on a pivot
- Tractors Tyres – a real challenge to get over as there few hand or footholds
- High Wall – traditional wooden wall with a fresh coat of creosote for added odour
- Rotating Pole Traverse – rotating telegraph pole with intermittent overhead hand holds
The pit was exited through a series of short switchbacks, which were a nice leg warmer for the muddy fields and a short hill that followed. Back into woodland we hit the classic OCR combo of mud trenches and crawl nets, anybody who knows me knows I hate crawl nets, they just annoy the crap out of me, but I guess that is the point. Post irritation it was back to the open farmland, but this time switchbacks across ploughed fields, lovely, just what MudClaws are made for. As our shoes reached critical mass, we dropped into a small valley, grabbed a wooden log and tromped up and down the valley sides before heading off to the second highlight of the course, the slide.
After the obligatory grinning descent and inevitable splash, it was up a steep banking and a return to farmland switchbacks, now with the odd hurdle to climb over. Eventually, terra firma returned, and we approached the last part of the course, the mud mile; more trenches, crawls, nets and of course mud, lots and lots of mud.
After the “mud mile,” it was a short trot to the event arena and the finish line, just three obstacles to complete before the bling was handed out, inclined monkey bars, a hamster wheel (think rolling monkey bars) and a very steep curved wall. The bars were ok, rough on the hands as the rungs were quite thin, but doable, the hamster wheel was harder than it looked as it had a slight incline and like the monkey bars had slender rungs, but again doable, just needed a different technique. The wall was a bugger, wet and very slick, there were ropes to aid with the ascent, but these were almost slippery as the wall itself. I learned at the OCR World Championships that slow is sometimes better, so rather than run at the wall and fail spectacularly I took my time. Grabbing the rope, I slowly hauled my bulk to the top, where with a bit of cajoling and swearing I completed the course.
Leaving the arena, I took advantage of the free and very hot showers, far better than the normal rub down with a damp rag then headed home. All in all a fun afternoon and one that I would recommend to first-timers and experienced racers alike.
- 1.5 km for kids
- 5 km, 6m and 10m for adults
Get The Details On
Rough Events Obstacle RaceOCR Review
- Event Website
- When Was The Event?
- 7th April 2018
- Was This A Qualification Race?
- Reviewed By
- Richard “Itch” Ward
- About The Reviewer
- Richard was born in the late 60’s, the consequence of a chance encounter between a one-handed truck driver and a Catholic. He finds being described as an athlete vexing.
- What Age Group Was I In?
- Type Of Competitor
- Was This My First Time At This Event?
Rough Events is a traditional OCR run with as many natural obstacles as possible. Held within the 300 acre venue of Ancaster Leisure all structures are permenant, which makes the course second to none!
Every course is carefully planned to ensure it challenges every level of participant.
- Value For Money
- The Pros
- The Marshals - Super friendly, encouraging and generous with the jelly babies
- Free key drop
- Free hot showers
- Free Car Parking
- The Cons
- Ancaster, Grantham NG32 3PY, UK
Booking The Event
- How far In Advance Did I Book?
- 3 months before
- What Discount Did I get?
- No Discount
- How Easy Was It To Book?
The Event Arena / Village
- Rate The Event Arena
- Rate The Buzz Around The Event Arena
- Rate The Food And Drink Stalls
The Event Facilities
- Rate The Parking
- Rate The Toilets
- Rate The Showers
- Was There A Bag Drop?
- Was There A Changing Tent?
- Rate The Medal
- Rate The Swag Bag
- Rate The Marshalls
- Rate The Course Marking
- Rate The Course Buzz
- Was The Event Timed?
- Was There Water On The Course?
- Did I Need To Be Able To Swim?
- Where There Bouyancy Aids Available?
- What Was The Maximum Depth Of The Water?
- 2 Metres Plus
- Types Of Terrain On The Course?
- Water Crossing
- Natural Obstacles
- Man Made Obstacles
- Rate The Quality Of The Obstacles
- How Many Obstacles Where There?
- Rate The Creativity Of The Obstacles
- Where There Any Compulsory Obstacles?
- What Was The Standard Of Mud?
- Where There Any High Obstacles?
- What Was The Maximum Height In Metres?
- 4 metres
- Did I Need A Harness?
- What Types Of Carries Where There?
- Unique Carries