Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph –
The Rambler 120 Team Challenge, Joint Base San Antonio’s
adventure race, will feature two new team categories when the ninth edition of
the competitive event takes place Sept. 19 at the JBSA Recreation Park at
Hosted by the 502nd Force Support Squadron, the Rambler 120
challenges four-person “Xtreme” teams and eight-person relay teams with a
22-mile bike race through the Texas Hill Country, a 6-mile run across Canyon
Lake Dam, a 2-mile raft race along the shoreline and mystery event.
The event also includes a “Just4Fun” category for
recreational racers and a youth biathlon – the “Iron Kid” – for family members
5 to 12 years old.
Xtreme teams, which must include at least one Department of
Defense ID cardholder, and relay teams, which must have at least two DOD ID
cardholders, compete in all-male, all-female and coed categories, but this year
all-military Xtreme and relay categories have been added to the Rambler 120.
“We’ve created Xtreme and relay categories for active-duty
members to give our squadrons an opportunity to have a morale-boosting exercise,”
Abbie Pollard, 502nd FSS community programs and partnership specialist, said.
“It gives them a chance for more camaraderie.”
Military teams and individuals may also qualify to have
their registration fees paid through the Air Force RecOn program, Pollard said.
The RecOn program provides recreational activities for
active-duty members and their families, especially Airmen returning from
deployment, and allows eligible customers to enjoy activities at no cost or at
a discount, funds permitting.
Last year, 31 teams registered for the Rambler 120 in the
Xtreme and relay divisions, including participants from all JBSA locations and
Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas.
Pollard said team competition makes the Rambler 120 a
“The military emphasizes health and fitness,” she said. “Of
all our FSS programs, this one is unique because of the health and fitness
aspect and the competitive nature of the event. This tests your abilities and
shows what you’re really capable of.”
Maj. Jill Rogers, who was the 99th Flying Training
Squadron’s assistant director of operations when her “99th Panthers” was the
overall fastest relay team in last year’s event, also emphasized the Rambler
120’s team aspect.
“The race is such a great event because it really takes a
lot of teamwork,” she said. “It is not about the individual. Everyone needs to
work together to get to the finish line.”
Rogers, who now serves as the 19th Air Force mobility
assistant director of operations, said competing in last year’s Rambler 120 was
a great experience.
“I think everyone on the team had a lot of fun,” she said.
“We were just going out to have fun and never expected to win the relay
Rogers said the 99th Panthers had to adjust to the loss of
two members to illness, but her husband helped fill the void.
“The team was awesome and was able to quickly adapt to the
changes,” she said. “Everyone was great and stepped up and changed what
portions of the race they were planning on doing.”
Like Rogers, Col. Michael Patronis, 47th Medical Group
commander at Laughlin Air Force Base, belonged to a winning team at last year’s
Rambler 120. “Awesome Sauce” was the overall fastest Xtreme team.
“It was a surreal experience to have my great lifelong
friend and my son join me for an Xtreme team challenge,” he said. “We overcame
physical challenges as a team and used a strategy to maximize our individual
and team strengths. It was epic and, for my son, a personal best.”
Patronis, who formerly served as Air Education and Training
Command Surgeon General Directorate Medical Support Division chief, said the
participants make the Rambler 120 special.
“Folks came from all
around, and several bases and services are represented, which results in great
camaraderie,” he said.
The deadline to register for the Rambler 120 is Sept. 5, but
teams that sign up before Aug. 1 save by paying the early-bird fee of $100 for
the Xtreme division and $150 for the relay division. After Aug. 1, the
registration fee increases to $120 for Xtreme teams and $180 for relay teams.
Individuals pay only $25 and children pay $10. The fee covers a barbecue lunch,
a commemorative T-shirt and awards for teams and children.
For more information, call Pollard or Ashley Lopez at