The Rat Snake is a race honoring a great man…Dr. Ken Stalter. Ken inspired many people by his personal example. That example? Pushing himself to be the very best he could be at all endeavors, with no help, with no exceptions. This race is a tribute to him and his unique drive to succeed. You will be given the opportunity to imitate his determination. The race being run in a reverse triathlon format, having a fairly challenging course, and being totally self supported, will all be a testimony to his spirit, and a race in which you can fully participate.
The run will be an 18 kilometer trail run with many rocks, roots, dirt, mud, grass, water crossings, and some pavement. It will be a 2 loop course that will allow athletes to store fuel in a special needs area so that they do not have to carry all of their energy needs during the run. With the course being 2 laps, it also makes it spectator friendly as the athletes will venture out of the woods 2 times passing the beachfront area where the start/finish will be located.
The bike course will be a one loop course that will prove to be very challenging. It is one which may start easy with some undulation and downhills but please, don’t be fooled. After a stretch of some flat road, the first climb will begin with more undulation and downhill to follow; but you must understand, Gilbert Lake State Park is the highest point of the race, and the climb subtlety begins. Once you come back into the town limits of Laurens, with only a few miles left in the bike course, you will be “greeted” by a hill that will leave you breathless. Finally, you will come down the steep descent on the other side of this hill, where you will begin the final grind up to the park.
The swim in Gilbert Lake is a simple out and back of 13 yards each way. No wetsuits allowed!