Back when us olde GORC folks had hair, and it was it's natural color (vs the silver crap that keeps sprouting above my neck), GORC would usually have 5 ~ 15 members take part in this suffer fest each year. Participating was like an entrance to a club that required a secret handshake or password ... of weird people that INTENTIONALLY rode their mtn bikes for 5, 6, 7, or more hours. And then, spent a couple hours talking about what they just did, with the people who had just experienced the same trails.
... sorry, that's a fantasy. SOME of the GORC staff have ridden a < 6 Hr Ouachita, but I ain't one of 'em. I finished the Ouachita events I signed up for, and was dog slow, but I got to ride my mtn bike for a long time.
IF you are interested in this type of silliness, here is the BikeReg link; https://www.bikereg....chita-challenge.
PLEASE NOTE THE REGISTRATION TIME: https://www.bikereg....chita-challenge, opens December 11th at 12:15 am CENTRAL TIME!
In past years, this event has sold out in < 6 hours. Please keep that in mind while considering your 2018 racing plans. The start is also ~ 8.5 to 9 hrs of driving from St. Louis. The trails are VERY fun and enjoyable, but it's a hard trip back to work Monday morning if you race Sunday.
If this sounds appealing, train on the Berryman Trail, or Middle Fork, between Barton Fen and Brushy Creek. The length and steepness of the climbs you will experience during the OC will be best replicated on the two previously listed trails.