After unfolding for the first time on American soil in 2021, the 24-hour Spartan Ultra World Championship — widely regarded as the most challenging event on the Spartan calendar — is moving west to the mountains of North Lake Tahoe, California. Spartans have become familiar with (and battle-hardened at) North Lake Tahoe, but this September will bring the 24-hour, ridiculously taxing challenge to the majestic — and punishing — Sierra Nevada range for the first time ever.
When and Where You Can Conquer the 2022 Spartan Ultra World Championship Course
Palisades Tahoe was once a host to the 1960 Olympic Winter Games, making it the perfect venue to put some of the world's strongest endurance athletes to the ultimate test. And even if you've raced at North Lake Tahoe in the past, you've never completed anything like this. This year's racers will be the first to conquer the brand new Ultra course at the 2022 Spartan Ultra World Championship on Sept. 24-26, 2022.
With a surface elevation of 6,224 feet and over 4,000 feet of elevation gain, the intensity of this course's thin mountain air, freshwater swims, and insanely technical, rocky, and steep slopes will challenge racers' physical and mental endurance and grit from Sunday morning at 10 a.m. until the final Monday morning hours.
Tackling 24 Hours Without Sleep
“Tahoe courses have been the pinnacle of obstacle course racing, and this course will bring new challenges to what is already the most grueling event of the season,” Spartan founder and CEO Joe De Sena said. “Twenty-four hours with no sleep, an epic course in Tahoe — I can’t wait to see what this course brings out in our Spartan athletes.”
The fifth annual Spartan Ultra World Championship will feature continuous laps 10K laps (preceded by one 20K lap) of a 20-plus-obstacle course for the entire 24-hour period. Elite and Age Group racers hoping to battle it out in North Lake Tahoe must complete a Spartan Ultra between Oct. 21, 2021, and Sept. 19, 2022, in the heat that they wish to compete in at the Championship.
The male and female Elite finishers who complete the most laps within 24 hours in North Lake Tahoe will share over $45,000 in prize money (plus the lifelong title of Spartan Ultra World Champion).
An Open-to-All Venue
The one-of-a-kind weekend, hosted by North Lake Tahoe, kicks off with a 30-obstacle, half-marathon Beast — open to all racers — on Saturday, Sept. 24, followed by the Ultra World Championship Age Group and Elite heats on Sunday, Sept. 25. An Open 24-hour Ultra heat will also be available on Sunday for non-qualifying participants who are ambitious enough to take on North Lake Tahoe's hardest Spartan race ever.
For more information about the race weekend, and to sign up, click here.
A Recap of 2021's Spartan Ultra World Championship
Over the same 24-hour time span, racers barreled through 10-mile, 25-obstacle loops with more than 4,000 feet of vertical elevation gain per loop. In the end, Rea Kolbl won her fourth 24-hour championship, completing 75 miles in 23 hours and 59 minutes, while Mark Gaudet tackled 90 miles in 24 hours and 10 minutes to take the men's first-place title.
Check out full coverage of the 2021 Ultra World Championship below.