NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

August 9, 2013

Up and over obstacles

Port architect will run in his fifth Spartan Race tomorrow

It takes a certain type of person to run a Spartan Race. Newburyport architect Scott Brown is one of them.

“Call me sick, but I like to get banged up,” said Brown, 40. “This obstacle racing stuff has become kind of a full-time hobby. They have these events kind of all year around, so you really can’t stop. You’ve got to keep going.

“I can’t wait to get out there on Saturday. It’s been a year since I’ve been in Amesbury and I’ve been thinking about it all year.”

Brown will be running his fifth Spartan Race at Amesbury Sports Park on Saturday and plans on running two more before the year is up.

An intense, competitive man by nature, Brown ran track and played soccer in high school. He runs on average 30 miles a week and competes in road races regularly, often finishing in the top 5 percent. But none of that prepared him for his first obstacle course race, the Warrior Dash in Amesbury in June of 2011.

“I had just come off my soccer season, so, naturally, I thought I was in pretty good shape,” said Brown. “I couldn’t imagine failing any obstacles or anything like that. So I was pretty confident going into this Warrior Dash.

“But, for a few days beforehand, it rained really, really hard and the course was a muddy mess. I just remember getting to the top of the hill and into the woods and thinking; ‘What is this?’ Because it was really the first sort of technical trail running I had done and it was absolute madness.”

Brown was confronted with a muddy cacophony.

“They had taped off areas for trails and everything was mud,” said Brown. “Thousands of people had run before me so you’re running downhill and running over slippery roots and rocks. Everything was slippery. (But) that was only 3 miles of light-duty obstacles. It was nothing like the Spartan Race.”

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