Qualifying and Location Changes for The 2015 Spartan World Championship

Spartan Coin 708

Spartan Race is making major changes for their 2015 Spartan World Championship.  Rather than a “sign-up and show-up” process that has existed since their first Championship Race in 2011, the event will take on a new format for 2015.  Much like the IRONMAN World Championship, obstacle racers must now qualify in order to be eligible to compete in the elite heat for the Saturday morning race. There will only be 600 spots available for 300 men and 300 women for this championship heat. Here is how to qualify:

The top 5 males and females at every Spartan Race (in the world) in 2015 will receive a coin which allows them entry in the World Championship race.

If any of the top five competitors in race placed at the top of a previous race, their coin moves down the list.

So, if the first place racer at any given race already has a coin, places 2-6 will get coins. If 1st and 2nd place already has a coin, places 3-7 get coins, and so on.

There is also a mention of some other “Qualifying Championships” that will give out additional coins, but those locations have not been nailed down yet.

(Editor’s note: The best we can tell the coin translates as “Come and get them, your challenges, they are short (brief)”)

The other big (and largely speculated upon) detail is the date and venue of this event. Spartan has done an incredible job of creating a championship event the last 3 years in September in Killington, Vermont. As the next town over from the birthplace of Spartan, it was a logical location with terrain unlike any other obstacle race. Many racers, elite and otherwise, have come to fear it, sometimes gearing their whole year of training around it. The mountains of Vermont have seemingly grown each year as the legend builds with how tough this race will be.

While Killington will still put on a Beast and UltraBeast, this year’s Spartan World Championship will take place in Squaw Valley, California, near Lake Tahoe on October 3 and 4, 2015. Time will tell if the hype and the race can live up to previous years at this new location.


Squaw Valley, California

More official details from Spartan can be viewed here or on the official press release below:

Obstacle racing’s ultimate test of endurance and strength, the two-day world championship weekend will includ e Two Beasts (13+ miles/ 25+ obstacles), a Spartan Sprint (3+ miles/ 15+ obstacles) and an Ultra Beast (26+ miles/ 30+ obstacles) situated at the crest of the striking Sierra Nevada mountain range in North Lake Tahoe, California.

The World Championship Beast will take place on Saturday 10/3/2015 with a second Beast race on Sunday. There is a new twist this year to qualify as one of the Elite Racers for the WC Beast. The Elite field will be limited to 300 men and 300 women, all vying for their chance to win.

Racers from around the world will get the Spartan Coin for placing in the top 5 at any global event. There will be 10 coins up for grabs at each race (5 for top men and 5 for top women) , with a trickle down if there are repeat winners. In addition, there will also be several global qualifying Championships, where the top 20 finishers will also get the coin. Additionally, the top 50 US point leader racers will also gain access to the coveted elite heat on Sunday.

With the Ultra Beast added, it will be the second Ultra Beast in 2015. The Killington, VT race will continue to feature the Ultra Beast, in addition to the Sprint and Beast, as usual. The Killington Race will maintain it’s prestige standing as it will commence the North East Regional TRIFECTA for 2015.

In other news, Spartan is kicking off the Road to the World Championship on a boat. The Spartan Cruise leaves from Miami, FL with a 3 day cruise to a Private Island race in the Bahamas on March 6th, 2015. 50 of the World’s Best Athletes from all different sports will board the ship and compete on the Sprint Level course. There will be $50,000 in cash prizes awarded on the cruise alone. It promises to be a truly epic and one-of-a-kind event.

“Continuing to challenge our athletes is part of the Spartan DNA,” said Spartan Race CEO and Founder, Joe DeSena. “Bringing our World Championship to one of the nation’s most spectacular and rugged backdrops will make for the most challenging events the obstacle racing community has experienced, and an unforgettable test of mental and physical strength.” 

Set on the same hallowed ground that once hosted the 1960 Winter Olympics, over 10,000 athletes from around the globe will scale the harsh mountain trails to compete for over $100,000 in cash prizes. 

Spartan plans to give our over $500,000 in cash prizes throughout 2015; their largest amount ever.

When not crawling under barbed wire or scaling the towering 2,850 foot vertical gain to reach the course’s peak elevation at 9,050 ft., athletes and their families can enjoy an endless number of outdoor sports and activities including 126 miles of marked mountain biking trails, fishing at the second largest alpine lake in the U.S. or hiking to the 10,776 foot summit of Mt. Rose, the highest peak in North Tahoe.  

NBC and NBCSN will once again provide comprehensive coverage of the Spartan Race season in 2015. Coverage will begin in early July on NBCSN, and culminate in December with the Reebok Spartan Race World Championships on NBC. Additional details about NBC Sports Group’s coverage, including a complete television schedule, will be announced soon.  

Registration for the 2015 Reebok Spartan World Championship opens on January 5, 2015 at Spartan.com.

About North Lake Tahoe

For more information about North Lake Tahoe, visit www.gotahoenorth.com. North Lake Tahoe is a 45-minute drive from the Reno Tahoe International Airport, two hours from Sacramento International Airport and just over three hours from San Francisco International Airport. Visitor information centers are located at 100 North Lake Boulevard in Tahoe City and 969 Tahoe Boulevard in Incline Village.

About Squaw Valley

Host of the 1960 Winter Olympics, Squaw Valley is a year-round mountain destination offering world-class adventures in every season. In summer, Squaw’s scenic aerial tram transports guests to elevation 8,200 feet to experience an array of exciting activities in a spectacular mountain setting including swimming, hiking, roller skating, disc golf and geocaching. At the base of the mountain, Squaw’s vibrant Village offers all new croquet, bean bag toss and a climbing wall, as well as shopping, al fresco dining, and music festivals all summer long.

Matt B. Davis

is the host of the Obstacle Racing Media Podcast and the author of "Down and Dirty-The Essential Training Guide for Obstacle Races and Mud Runs". He is also the only (known) #wafflehouseelite obstacle racer.
  1. Interesting… So as the year progresses, it will become easier and easier to earn a spot at the cmapionships, since more of the elite racers who occupy the top spots will have already placed… Based on this scenario, if you ran the last Spartan before the championships, you could place almost 300th and still qualify, assuming the 299 people in front of you had already recieved their coins…

  2. Not a great move moving any championship race to 6-9,000 ft altitude. This gives a total advantage to athletes who have the opportunity to live at altitude.

    1. Embrace it. I’ll be training hard for it since im only at about 4000ft myself. Last time I ran through Tahoe it was rough. I can’t wait for the challenge

  3. Are these coins handed out 5 per event location (top 5 on a full race weekend or per race day), elite heat(s) only, or elite and open combined, per race day? Any specifics?

  4. Ok read all of the above, But my question is! Shouldn’t the coins be given out by age group?? So the top 5 in an age group men and woman get a coin?? If not then it should be so that all ages are invited and on an even playing field!? As for growth in the sport this would give Spartan a greater audience.

  5. So I see that the “Championship elite run” you need a coin to qualify. What about the afternoon BEAST is that just a standard beast that anyone can run? Im curious because i live in CT and have no shot at landing in top 5 in a spartan race in all reality my only race i was 211 in mens sprint. I just wanted to run the BEAST in lake tahoe and see the world championship. so basically do you need a coin to race at all in lake tahoe?

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