This will be the first time the event has ever been held outside the US…

Abu Dhabi is set to take its form for hosting huge world-first sporting events into 2021.

This time round its the turn of the Spartan World Championships, which has now been confirmed as landing in a section of the Liwa desert, between December 3 and 5, 2021.

Abu Dhabi will be the very first city outside of the US to stage the event, and it’s easy to see why they picked it.

In addition to its pedigree for safely putting on massive sporting events during the pandemic (see the F1, UFC Fight Island for recent examples), the towering dunes, rugged terrain and remote location of the Liwa desert make for the most dramatic backdrops for this famously demanding challenge.

This is Sparta

The roar of Sparta begins on Friday December 3 with the Spartan Kids World Championship. And if you think the young warriors will get let-off lightly, then you probably haven’t seen any footage from previous events. This is Sparta, and here the mix of course difficulties for the various age groups will each feature taxing challenges.

On Friday night the Elite Spartan Beast Championship hits the track running. It’s a half-marathon route through the desert and it’s reserved for qualified competitors only. Racers should expect high-speed running, leg-burning steep climbs and a grueling conveyor belt of obstacles to overcome.

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On Saturday there are Open Spartan Beast heats, more kids races and the Teams World Championship.

Earn those shields

The top prize for male and female competitors is around Dhs73,000, and second place runners get about Dhs55,000. In fact there’s a prize fund allocation for all places down to the 10th spot.

Abu Dhabi’s landscape and climate will create a unique collection of challenges for its Spartan runners, but for a little taste of what to expect, check out the below video for the 2019 event which took place in Tahoe, (there were no Spartan World Championships in 2020).

Registration is not currently open, but when it goes live you’ll find it on the website. We’ll let you know of course.

Until then, you’ve got 11 months to get Spartan fit, so you better get training.