Sign up for April 15 obstacle race by April 13

By Chet Broberg, University Recreation

PULLMAN, Wash. – The second annual Rugged Coug Race on Saturday, April 15, at Washington State University will present participants with a variety of obstacles – wall climbs, tire flips, cinder block carries and more – and a surprise finish.

The deadline to register is April 13. For more information and to register, visit

Hosted by University Recreation, the on- and off-road adventure is intended to pose an unknown challenge outside of traditional recreation so competitors will need to be prepared for a variety of options.

The slippery wall climb is one race obstacle. The tire flip, at top, is another.

“You feel so accomplished after the race,” said DJ Mackie, UREC coordinator of competitive sports. “You take on obstacles in this race, and now you’re prepared to handle more obstacles in your own life.”

But he stressed that the course is not just for obstacle enthusiasts. Anyone can have fun, and months of training aren’t needed to succeed.

“You shouldn’t look at the event and say, ‘Oh, I’ve never done this before so I shouldn’t do it,’” he said. “You don’t need to worry about your time; just come out and challenge yourself through the obstacles.”

The Rugged Coug Race has evolved from the Campus on the Run 5K. Two years ago UREC added an obstacle course option; it was so well received that it became the event last year.

Obstacle races are growing in popularity, Mackie said, but residents of the Palouse have very few opportunities to compete close to home.

This year’s race will take place on the same course as last year, starting from the Outdoor Recreation Center parking lot and ending in the Student Recreation Center backyard. However, there will be different obstacles and they will be placed in different locations.

The obstacles themselves are representative of the community involvement in the event. The traverse wall, incline wall and all wooden obstacles are made by the shop class at Moscow Middle School.

For elite obstacle course competitors, the course could take as little as 35 minutes to complete. But Mackie said he expects the average participant to require around 1 hour and 15 minutes. Racers will be let out in heats starting at 10:15 a.m.

Participants will receive a commemorative bib and T-shirt. Winners of each division will receive a rugged wood medal and free entry to next year’s competition.


News media contacts:
DJ Mackie, WSU UREC, 509-335-2218,
Matt Shaw, WSU UREC, 509-335-9660,