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Red Bull 400: The Steepest Race of Its Kind on the Planet

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A competitor makes his way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, UT, USA on 24 September, 2016. (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
A competitor makes his way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, Utah, on September 24, 2016 (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)

 

Endurance races—like Tough Mudders, Iron Mans, or even the Marathon des Sables—have become wildly popular in recent history. Designed to test your body’s limits, they now seem to truly be available to the masses. But one recently launched by Red Bull might be the steepest challenge to date—literally.

Competitors make their way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, UT, USA on 24 September, 2016. (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
Competitors make their way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, Utah, on September 24, 2016 (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)

 

Called the Red Bull 400, it’s one of the toughest 400-meter races in the world. The competition, based in Park City, Utah, is a sprint uphill at an incline of 37 degrees. To make it even more difficult, the event is held at an elevation of 7,000 feet. As a precaution, medical assistance is waiting on standby with oxygen masks for competitors.

Competitors make their way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, UT, USA on 24 September, 2016. (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
Competitors make their way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, Utah, on September 24, 2016 (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)

The race itself takes place on a 6,870-foot-tall Nordic ski jump, covered by a rope ladder to keep contestants from falling. “The excitement and energy swarmed the venue even in the 40-degree weather,” said participant and Olympic ski jumper Sarah Hendrickson in an interview with Red Bull. “It’s hard to know what to expect before your first time, but I promise you it is nothing shy of a max heart rate, calf cramps, and hyperventilation,” said Hendrickson. “As you crumble at the top, you better stand up and walk it off quickly before everything freezes up.”

A competitor makes her way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, UT, USA on 24 September, 2016. (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
A competitor makes her way up the hill at Red Bull 400, in Park City, Utah, September 24, 2016 (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
Competitors gasp for breath at the summit at Red Bull 400, in Park City, UT, USA on 24 September, 2016. (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)
Competitors gasp for breath at the summit at Red Bull 400, in Park City, Utah, on September 24, 2016 (David Martínez Moreno / Red Bull Content Pool)

 

The event was held this year on Sept. 24, and was part of a touring competition, whose final stop was in Park City. Watch the video below to get a sense of just how tough the climb is. Maybe you’ll want to try it out next year when Red Bull brings it to your neck of the woods.