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More than 1,300 racers got down and dirty at Kiekhaefer Park on Sunday, for the third annual Edge the Ledge competition.

Edge the Ledge is a three-mile adventure race around the park. As participants run along the trail, they’re faced with hurdles, planks, walls, hills and TNT Fitness “Gladiators” that block their path.

Course designers planned for competitors to get dirty in a mud pit crawl, but due to recent storms, racers said the entire course was muddy and slippery.

“There’s that hill going down through the forest and it is just nothing but mud,” Tristan Szente, a first time Edge the Ledge participant said. “People were falling down left and right.”

Racer Chris Schroeder, who participated in last year’s Edge the Ledge race, said the muddy trail made the event more challenging this time around.

“Last year was a drought so we were on hard-packed dirt,” he said. “This year, you ran and ran but it didn’t seem like you were getting anywhere because it was so slippery.”

The course may have been extra muddy, but the racers didn’t seem to mind as they crossed the finish line with big smiles.

“It wouldn’t have been as much fun if it was dry,” racer Heather Berres said with a laugh.

It was Edge the Ledge’s biggest turnout, race coordinator Gloria West said. Some teams had more than 50 members.

“Last year we had close to 800 (participants),” West said. “This year we have over 1,300.”

West said about 100 kids signed up for the Kids Adventure Race, which was a new event for children ages 5-10.

Prizes were awarded for the craziest costume and to top individual and team racers.

West said as the event continues to grow, she hopes for even bigger attendance next year.

“Even if people aren’t going to participate, we just want them to come out and watch,” West said.

Schroeder said he is already gearing up for next year’s Edge the Ledge competition and encouraged people to try the challenge.

“I’d recommend it,” Schroeder said. “I’ll definitely be back next year.

Emily Miels can be reached at emiels@fonddulac.gannett.com or (920) 907-7912.

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