Outdoor athletes in the U.S. who are looking for a new challenge will find it in the form of a new mountain running series that will debut later this year. The O2X Summit Challenges will launch in September, and promises runners a completely new, and unique experience unlike any they’ve seen before.
The inaugural race is scheduled to take place on September 13-14 on Mt. Ellen at Sugerbush Resort, located in Vermont. It will launch a four-race season that will take place throughout the New England and New York area. The first race will feature two courses, a single-diamond run that features 1000 feet (304 meters) of vertical gain, and a double-diamond route with 2000 feet of vert. Both routes will combine single-track, mountain access roads, meadows, and open hills on their way to a summit finish, located at 4083 feet (1244 meters).
But the O2X Summit Challenge organizers have more in mind than just creating a new trail running series. The event will be a week-end long affair that includes a Base Camp where competitors, spectators, friends, and family can all gather for a weekend in the outdoors. There will be scheduled nature walks, training sessions, performance exhibits and even a farmer’s market. On top of that, the race founders have pledged to leave the campsite and trails better than they found them, and will be donating proceeds to 1% for the Planet.
Following the race at Sugarbush, two other races have already been announced. They include an event at Sunday River in Maine that is scheduled for September 27-28, as well as another in Windham, New York on October 25-26. A fourth event has yet to be disclosed. The races are said to offer challenges for both the casual hiker, to the elite trail runner, with options for everyone in-between. The core focus is not to just have a trail running event, to but to encourage others to get outside and be active in a variety of ways.
This looks like an interesting new initiative, and it is great to see a trail running series like this coming to the eastern U.S. There are plenty of similar activities in the west of course, but this will be much appreciated in New England as well.
To find out more, and to register for a race, visit O2X.com.
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