Announcing: Team MudGear 2017 December 07 2016, 0 Comments

It's Malko from MudGear,

After reviewing close to 600 phenomenal applications from the OCR community, it's time to announce our team. This was no easy task considering the many amazing accomplishments and inspiring stories you all submitted.

As our company has grown this year, we've received twice the amount of applications compared to last year. We ended up having to expand the team, and that's why things took a bit longer than expected to announce.

After reading countless stories of how OCR has helped people turn their lives around, I'm grateful and humbled to be a part of this special community. It gives me great satisfaction that our products are helping people change their lives through OCR, and I can't thank you enough for taking the time to submit an application.

We'll be featuring some of the inspirational stories on our blog this upcoming year, but until then here's the roster for Team MudGear in 2017!

 

Brakken Kraker

Mike Ferguson

K.K. Stewart-Paul

Robert Killian Jr.

Alexandra Walker 

Mark Jones

Kevin LaPlatney

Morgan McKay

Victor Quezada

Brian Gowiski

Laura Lunardi

Josh Chase

Ryan Woods

Tiffany Palmer

Kate Cramer

Angel Quintero

Shelby Harris

 

 


Robert Killian Jr - Team MudGear 2017

Robert Killian Jr.

Robert Killian Jr. is a world-class OCR racer with a distinguished career in the US Army Special Forces, routinely working with coalition allies throughout the world. In 2016, Killian and his partner were named winners of the 2016 Best Ranger Competition. He also has the highest ever finish by an American at the World Military Orienteering Championships, being nominated for US Army Soldier-Athlete of the Year in 2015. We're honored to have him on Team MudGear for 2017 and the upcoming racing season. Some of his race highlights include:

  • #1 at Best Ranger Competition 2016
  • #1 Spartan Super and #1 overall trifecta rankings in Austria Oberndorf Tirol, 2016
  • #2 at WTM Team Division 2016, Completing 100 Miles
  • #2 Spartan Race Breckenridge, 2016
  • #3 at Spartan World Championships Tahoe, 2016
  • #4 at OCRWC 15KM Pro Division, 2016
  • #1 Longmont Triathlon, 2015
  • #3 OCRWC Team Championships, 2016
  • #1 Spartan World Championships, 2015
  • #3 Spartan Super Pennsylvania, 2015
  • #3 Spartan Super New Jersey, 2015

 

Laura Lunardi

Laura has been a star athlete since her college days, a Division 1 athlete in both field hockey and lacrosse. Now working in geriatric physical therapy and a mother to five kids all under the age of 9 - she still manages to find time crushing OCR races and ultra-marathons. Laura's is a true inspiration for all OCR athletes. Some of her race highlights include:


2016:

  • 9 Elite Spartan podiums
  • 10 Elite Masters Spartan podiums
  • Top 3 Female in 4 marathons
  • 2016 Spartan Elite Masters
  • 2016 Spartan Elite Female #5

2015:

  • 14 Elite Masters Spartan podiums in 2015
  • Top 3 Female in 3 ultra marathons in 2015
  • 2015 Elite Masters: #1
  • 2015 Elite Female Spartan: #10
  • Podium finishes in all 2015 races from 10K-15K distances 


Brakken Kraker - Team MudGear 2017

Brakken Kraker

Brakken has been a full-time OCR racer since 2014, but his beginnings in the sport started at the Illinois Spartan Sprint in 2011. At that race, he discovered how bad his fitness was and the misery of burpees. Since then, he’s pushed himself to become one of the leading figures in the OCR community. Brakken currently lives in West Allis and is the head coach of http://leaderboardfit.com/. Some of his race highlights:

  • #2 Montana NBC race 2016
  • #1 Spartan Stadium Series Champion
  • #3 Spartan Points Series 2015
  • 7 OCR wins in 2015
  • 20 races completed in 2015
  • 16 races with podium finish in 2015

 

Kate Cramer

Kate has a long-standing athletic background since high school that allowed her to blaze into OCR. Though her speciality is in shorter races, you'll also find her competing in Spartan Beasts & Supers. In 2006, she represented the United States at FISU World Championships in Lausanne, Switzerland winning the sprint triathlon national championship. She's also trained with the US triathlong team at the Olympic Training Center in 2007, and placed 16th at the ITU National Championships in Honolulu, HI. Some of her race stats include:

  • Spartan Pro Team & Yancy Camp Athlete
  • 2016 Spartan Race Stadium Series Champion
  • Spartan Race rookie of the year, 2015
  • 12 Spartan Race podium finishes in 2015
  • 8 Spartan #1 podium placements in 2015

 

Kevin "Mudman" LaPlatney

Kevin "Mudman" LaPlatney has over 110 OCR races completed and isn't stopping anytime soon. He's the owner of OCR and Ninja Warrior training facility "Obstacle Athletics" in Long Island, NY. As the head coach, it's a one-of-a-kind gym that delivers functional fitness training and helps push people past their limits. Learn more about them on Facebook here. He also operates MudMan Report, a popular OCR race and gear review website. "MudGear has always been a brand that fully stands by its products, its athletes, and the awesome sport of obstacle racing.  This is the type of company I’m proud to be representing." Here are some of his race stats:

  • #3 Elite Ranking in age group, Spartan Stadium Series, 2016
  • Ranked #16 nationally, Spartan Stadium Series, 2016
  • Earned Spartan Race Elite Coin at Killington VT, 2016


 

K.K. Stewart-Paul

K.K. is a Crossfit endurance enthusiast, mountain runner, and former equine trainer. She now dominates OCR courses around the country. In 2015, she won 1st place in over ten races, and looks forward to breaking new records this year. Some of her race stats include:

  • #1 Arizona Spartan Race (back-to-back), 2015
  • #2 Atlas Race SoCal, 2015
  • #1 Atlas Race SoCal, 2015
  • #1 Atlas Race San Antonio, 2015
  • #1 Battle Frog Dallas, 2015
  • #1 Colorado Spartan Race (back-to-back), 2015
  • #1 Pac-West Spartan Sprint, 2015
  • #1 Breckenridge Spartan Sprint, 2015
  • #1 Dallas Battlefrog, 2015
  • #1 Atlanta Battlefrog, 2015
  • #1 Miami Battlefrog, 2015
  • #4 Orlando Battlefrog Championships, 2015
  • #3 Obstacle Course Race World Championship, 2015

 

Brian Gowiski

Brian has dominated the 2016 OCR season. He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina which is also the home of MudGear. He's a US Marine Corps Veteran with two tours in Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom and a Purple Heart recipient. After spending many years abroad, he sees racing in OCR as an opportunity some are not fortunate enough to have. Some of his race stats:

  • #1 OCR World Championships 2016, 25-29 category
  • #1 Men's Elite Fort Bragg Sprint, 2016
  • #1 Men's Elite Washington Spartan Sprint, 2016 (Saturday)
  • #1 Men's Elite for 2016 Washington D.C. Sprint (Sunday)
  • #1  Men's Elite for 2016 Ohio Sprint
  • #1  Mens Elite for 2016 Ohio Beast
  • #1 OCR World Championships 2015, 25-29 category
  • #1 OCR World Championships 2014, 25-29 category

 

Morgan McKay

Morgan is an OCR addict from Ottawa, Canada compiling an impressive OCR resume in the most extreme races around the world. As a full-time personal trainer, she loves helping clients reach their goals and break through barriers. She fell in love with OCR in 2011 when she completed her first Spartan Race. Now she also dedicates her time training for extreme OCR events with coach Yancy Culp. With hard work and determination, she believes that anything is possible. Some of her recent race stats:

  • #3 Overall Female Finisher World's Toughest Mudder, 2016
  • #1 Battlefrog 24-Hour Extreme Race, 2016
  • #3 Spartan Ultra Beast New Jersey, 2016
  • #1 Battlefrog Extreme New England, 2015
  • #1 Spartan Ultra Beast World Championships 2013

 

Mark Jones

Mark Jones has been dominating races across road running, OCR, trail running, triathlons, CrossFit, and adventure racing. As training for the Spartan Death Race, he once ran 50 miles with a 50lb pack to prep himself for the race. Mark served in the Marines and continues to serve in the US Army. He will also be race director for "Dark Rainbow" and "The Suck" in 2017. Some of his race stats include:

  • #1 Ultimate Suck, 2016 (First ever 2x overall winner)
  • #3 World's Toughest Mudder (Team), 2016 
  • #1 Ultimate Suck, 2014
  • #3 Spartan Ultra Beast (Overall), Killington 2016
  • #1 World's Toughest Mudder (Team), 2014
  • #1 CIOR (Confederation of Interrelated Officer) Gold Medalist, 2012
  • Texas Water Safari “Real life, Oh S$#t - I can die type of race” 56hr Bucket List,  2016 

Alexandra Walker

As a dental hygienist out of spring Branch, TX, Alexandra got her first taste of OCR when she ran a Tough Mudder in 2014. Being a member of Team Power Up, San Antonio OCR Racers, and Lone Star spartans, she loves being a part of the vibrant community. Her favorite races are Savage Race and Conquer The Gauntlet. For next year, she has her eyes set on the Spartan World Championships and OCR World Championships. Some of her race stats include:

  • #1 Warrior Dash Austin, 2016
  • #1 BattleFrog San Antonio, 2016
  • #1 BattleFrog Dallas, 2016
  • #1 BattleFrog Kansas City, 2016
  • #2 Spartan Sprint Austin, 2016
  • #2 Spartan Super Austin, 2016
  • #2 CTG/XCT, 2016
  • #2 Savage Race Houston, 2016
  • #3 BattleFrog Arizona, 2016
  • #3 Spartan Beast Team Challenge, 2016
  • #3 BattleFrog Atlanta, 2016

     

    Ryan Woods

    Ryan Woods is from Boone, North Carolina. He's an accomplished racer that doesn't take himself too seriously. Ryan runs far; Ryan runs fast. Ryan ran track; Ryan cracks backs. Ryan is small; Ryan excels at the barb wire crawl. Ryan once couldn't climb a rope; now Ryan in dope. Ryan swings through the rig; Ryan is working to get big. Some of his race stats:

    • Won 3 savage races
    • Won 7  Spartans
    • 4th OCR Worlds short course
    • 11th Spartan Worlds
    • 8th in Spartan US Championship series

     

    Tiffany Palmer

    Tiffany is an obstacle course racer from Gambrills, MD.  She grew up as a multi-sport athlete competing in junior Olympic speed skating, all star cheerleading, and softball. Currently, she is a full-time childcare provider and high school cheerleading coach. When Tiffany is not giving piggyback rides or spotting a tumbling pass, you can find her training for or competing in an OCR.

    In April 2016, Tiffany competed in her first Elite race, the Spartan Beast in New Jersey, where she finished in 2nd place.  During the 2016 race season, She competed in 11 races, all of which she finished in the Top 15, including nine Top 5 finishes and six podium finishes!  Between training and competing, Tiffany loves inspiring others to reach their full potential. She says “It's an honor to represent MudGear and I cannot wait for the 2017 season!”


    #1 BattleFrog Philadelphia, 2016
    #1 Warrior Dash MD, 2016 
    #2 DC Sprint Sat, 2016 
    #1 DC Sprint Sun, 2016 
    #4 Spartan Super Wintergreen, 2016
    #1 Spartan Sprint Wintergreen, 2016
    #2 Spartan Beast New Jersey, 2016
    #5 OCRWC 3k, 2016
    #14 OCRWC 15k, 2016
    #12 Palmerton NBC race, 2016

     

    Victor Quezada

    Victor has always been active, maybe even a bit hyper so OCR is a perfect fit for him. It challenges him to put everything he has into competing at the highest level. After playing baseball for 16 years, he drifted away and eventually weighed 210lbs at one point. In 2011, he decided to make a change and live healthier. He ran his first race in January of 2014 and has been hooked ever since then. Victor currently has a total of 26 OCR podium placements. Among those are 13 from terrain racing, and 8 from Spartan Race. His other race stats include:

    • #1 Throwdown in the LBC, 2016
    • #2 Epic Series, 2016
    • #2 OCR World Championships (25-29 Category), 2016
    • #2 BattleFrog League Championships ESPN: Team San Diego, 2016
    • #3 Down and Dirty, 2016
    • #4 BattleFrog Placements In 3 Races, 2016
    • #4 BattleFrog Placements In 3 Races, 2016
    • #6 BattleFrog Overall, 2016
    • #2 OCR World Championships (25-29 Category), 2015
    • #6 Spartan Super Sacramento, 2014

     

       

      Shelby Harris

      Shelby has a masters in Exercise Physiology and works as a CrossFit L-1 personal trainer at CrossFit Vesuvio & CrossFit Dynamo in the Atlanta area. She's been running OCR races since 2013, and is a member of MIT Tough Team USA, Georgia Obstacle Racers, and Mud Runners. Her nickname is "Muscle Hamster" because while small, she packs incredible strength to conquer obstacles that require technical work. Her favorite race series is Savage Race. "I began OCR in college when I wanted a challenge and a way to encourage myself to get back in shape. I went out of my comfort zone and signed up for a Spartan Race with no friends doing it with me, and ended up having a blast. Now I've been running races ever since."

       

       

      Mike Ferguson

      Mike's love for racing traces back to middle school when he used to race BMX bikes competitively in middle school. During high school, he was introduced to track and field where he did well in state championships. His first OCR race was in 2013 and placed fifth in the elite race. That's when he discovered he was both enjoying and excelling at OCR.

      “I don't ever want to look back and say I wish I would have, or wondered how good could I have been. So I'm taking advantage of being in my prime right now to become the best OCR racer I can possibly be." Some of his race stats from this year:

      • #1 Men's Elite MN Spartan Sprint, 2016
      • #1 Men's Elite MN Rugged Maniac, 2016
      • #1 Men's Elite MN Warrior Dash, 2016
      • #1 Men's Elite MN Terrain Race, 2016
      • #27 Men's Elite - 2016 Spartan World Championships

       

       

      Angel Quintero

      Angel Quintero is an OCR racer that lives in Mexico City. As a dedicated and passionate person that always works hard for what he wants, we're proud to have him on board as OCR races are expanding internationally. He has 14 podium placements across 16 different Spartan Races. On goals for 2017, Angel says “I have no doubt that I will work harder in 2017 so I can get even better results”.

      • #4 Place NBC Spartan Championship, 2016
      • #6 Place Spartan Race World Championship 2015
      • #6 Place OCR World Championship 2016
      • #12 Place Spartan World Championship 2016

         

        Josh Chace

        "I am a member of the New England Spahtens - we're an almost 5,000 member strong community that has been running OCR since 2010. Our goal is too help encourage, educate, and cheer on members and others from the novice runner to the pro athletes. For me the sport of OCR is a life changing experience. I co-host a podcast with other NES members and our goal is to share the experiences we have as well ass interact with the community in order to promote OCR in general.  I've got a pretty wide variety of finishes as I don't always run to compete. Most times I run to finish as a team, or help new people finish a race they're scared of."