A super-fit entrepreneur from Bolsover has turned his passion for obstacle course racing into a business opportunity with the launch of a new magazine.
Carl Wibberley, 30, took up the new craze of obstacle course racing two years ago, but soon noticed that the growing OCR community was not being serviced very well in the media so he set up his own Obstacle Race Magazine.
He said: “What started off as a hobby quickly turned into an obsession for me. I asked a few friends who’d been running the events whether they had seen anything for obstacle course racing, and apart from the odd column here or there in the running magazines, there was nothing to feed our addiction.
“I think a lot of people have got bored with road running and are looking to push their boundaries that little bit further.
“We are so disconnected from other people and the outside world now since smart phones have taken over.
“Most races you have to run as a team to complete them so it injects the much needed team spirit back into people’s lives.
“I entered my first race and since then have made hundreds of friends within the community because they’re so welcoming.”
Obstacle Course Races are usually held in countryside locations where there’s enough space to build and place obstacles along routes that also include natural obstacles.
Many are also held at army barracks and imitate military assault courses.
Courses can be held over distances of about 5km and up to and over 25km and OCM has included features on the renowned Reebok Spartan races, as pictured.
The sport has evolved to allow entries from all ages and abilities.
Carl added: “It’s great to see people wading through mud, crawling under barbed wire and hanging off monkey bars and jumping fire - and all with a smile.
“I set up a Facebook page in September, which quickly gained over 13,000 plus likes so I then knew my idea would work.
“I took my concept to WH Smiths and they believed that I’d stumbled onto something special and agreed to stock the magazine in over 300 of their largest stores.”
Obstacle Race Magazine was launched in January in WH Smiths.