The race is shaping up to be a fierce battle between some of the country’s fastest runners.
October 31, 2023 – Bentonville, Ark.: UltraSignup, the leading online registration platform for endurance events and host of the Dirt Circus Trail Party series and the Dirt Circus 10K trail race has announced the elite runners to watch in the Dirt Circus 10K, taking place in Bentonville, Arkansas on November 18. Dirt Circus is a weekend-long event, comprising a 10K race with a $10,000 prize purse, a 5K race, and a Kids 1K. The weekend kicks off with a group run on Friday, November 17, followed by festivities on Friday and Saturday. Dirt Circus Bentonville is a partnership between UltraSignup and local Bentonville organizations Rush Running Co, Visit Bentonville, and Trailblazers.
Men’s Field – Runners to Watch
- Andy Wacker: Andy is a pro trail and road runner who has represented Team USA 17 times! Most recently, Andy took home 2nd place in the 38k at the World Mountain Running World Cup final in Gran Canaria, Spain. Just two weeks earlier he was crowned Xterra Trail world champion in the trail half marathon.
- Christian Allen: One of the fastest trail and mountain runners in the United States, Christian placed first in the 38k at the World Mountain Running World Cup final in Gran Canaria, Spain in mid-October and placed 5th male overall in the Valsir Mountain Running World Cup standings for 2023.
- Samuel Ongaki: Samuel took first place at the XTERRA Americas Trail Run Championship 42km in May 2023. He holds course records at Delirium 32k and the Tuscaloosa Half Marathon. Originally from Kenya, Samuel now makes his home in Alabama and has transitioned from a career on the road to the trails.
- Dan Curts: Brooks-sponsored athlete Dan recently took second at the Xterra Trail World Championships half marathon at Sugarloaf Mountain, ME. In April he placed first at the USATF Mountain Running Championships and competed at the World Mountain Running Championships for the United States in June.
- Morgan Elliott: Morgan is a two-time member of the United States Mountain Running National Team and recently set a new FKT at the Merrell Test Lab “Get FKT” event, earning a spot on the Merrell trail team.
Women’s Field – Runners to Watch
- Dani Moreno: Pro runner for Adidas TERREX, Dani recently took second place at Mammoth Trail Fest 26K. She is a four-time member of Team USA, a two-time U.S. champion, and was the first-ever American woman to podium at UTMB’s OCC 50k.
- Mercedes Siegle-Gaither: Recently joining the Merrell trail team after tying for an FKT at the Merrell Test Lab “Get FKT” event, Mercedes has shown she has range but her performance at Broken Arrow Skyrace Triple Crown and the Merrell FKT have made her a rising star in the shorter efforts.
- Megan Lacey: Two-time member of US Mountain and Trail running Team USA, Megan took 2nd place in the classic at the NACAC championship in September following a 4th place finish for Team USA at the 2021 Xterra Trail World Champs. She was the runner-up at the 2022 USATF Trail Half-Marathon Championships and 5th at the 2023 USATF Mountain Championship.
This incredible line-up boasts some of the fastest short-course mountain runners in the country and will compete for a $10,000 prize purse, the largest prize purse for a short distance trail race ever seen in the United States. First place men and women will take home $3000, second place $1250, and third place $750.
“We are excited to welcome this world-class field of runners to Bentonville for the Dirt Circus 10K,” said Rob Goyen, Event Director at UltraSignup. “This race will showcase the incredible trails that northwest Arkansas has to offer and attract more trail runners to visit the area.”
The Dirt Circus 10K is a challenging course that winds through the Handcut Hollow, a system of hand-built trails developed and maintained by the local non-profit Trailblazers. The route was created by James Reeves, a local runner, race director, and manager at Rush Running. It is intended to be rugged, technical, and unforgiving. Giving runners a taste of the oft-underestimated Ozark mountains.
The Dirt Circus 10K and Dirt Circus 5K are in Bentonville, Arkansas on November 18. Both races are open to runners of all levels. There will also be a Kids 1K race – fun for the whole family!
Registration is now open at ultrasignup.com.