"Follow the Leader" is our new and continuing interview series highlighting the founders of run clubs from around the globe working to evolve the sport in their city and beyond.
This week's edition of Follow the Leader covers Darcy Budworth, the Founder and Race Director behind Take the Bridge, the very epic, very unsanctioned race series.
Name: Darcy Budworth
About Darcy: I grew up in Portland, Oregon. About 20 years ago I moved to Brooklyn to study Interior Architecture at Pratt Institute. Shortly after moving to NY I started running. I’ve run with a number of crews: NY Harriers, Brooklyn Track Club, Girls Run NYC, and now I’m a founding member of a new female only run crew called “No Mans Land”. In addition to throwing unsanctioned races, I design retail store interiors. During covid my work had me splitting my time between NY and LA and in the summer of 2021 I drove cross country to make LA my permanent home.
- Race Organization: Take the Bridge
- Date Founded: Our first race was on July 18th, 2015
- Race Field Sizes: Our races range from 50 people in smaller cities, to 125+ people in NYC
- Race Fees: Typical races range from $30-$40/ race. This money directly goes back to the runners in the form of prize money.
- Upcoming Races: NYC on March 15th, LA on March 17th, and Boston on April 15th
- Favorite Other Race: The Superfund Super Run by SBRC
About Take the Bridge
Take The Bridge was started in 2015 to offer runners another option for racing, something that brought back the energy and love of racing that maybe we have forgotten about. TTB is about taking back racing from larger corporations, and creating something that gives our community a say in the races offered in our city. I truly believe that TTB belongs to everyone who is involved in it. Our races wouldn’t be possible without the crew partnerships we have, the volunteers that help out, and the people that come to race and spectate. This race is community focused, and community led. THIS RACE IS YOUR RACE.
In the past 5 years we have also expanded TTB outside of NYC (where we started) to include cities across the country, across the world.
If TTB were a tv show or movie, what would it be?
I have had people call TTB the Fight Club for running.
What are you most excited about this year for TTB?
We are returning to Canada this year . . . cannot wait!
Favorite TTB memory?
Last year we created a race just for female identifying runners. Our NYC WTTB was our biggest race yet. Over 130 runners, with teams from every crew in the city. I loved seeing women who have possibly been too scared or intimidated to race our races, show up. Those women were bad asses and seeing everyone support one another, and fully step into their power, was everything to me.
Second favorite: Our first trail race in LA. Runners and spectators had to hike up 1 mile to a trail head. The race was along the ridgeline of 3 trails, and finished at a watch tower that connected all three. As you raced you could see and hear the spectators at the finish waiting for you, as you watched from the tower you could see everyone’s headlamp along the trails. The energy was unreal. Afterwards, we had drinks on the watchtower (kinda like dazed and confused) until the park rangers shut us down. THAT was a fuckin good night.
What’s your goal for the future of TTB?
I want to continue to lean into having women leaders / co-direrctors for our races, and showcasing women of all sizes, paces, ethnicities racing in TTB. I am the person I am today because of the females in my life. So creating a safe space where women truly feel supported is really important to me.
Want to spotlight a person or group in the TTB world doing something awesome? (Optional)
I am part of a group of female leaders in the run space in LA. For the first year or so we have just been a whatsapp group. Recently we put a name to ourselves: No Man’s Land. Right now it is a supportive space for us to connect on issues we may be dealing with, get together for runs, and grab dinner / drinks together. In a few weeks we have a team aiming to break some records in TSP. After that, who knows?! But I would love for this group to be something more than just a crew. I would love for this group to be a space for female leaders from all over to connect. This is just the beginning.
Dream TTB event?
When I lived in NY I always had this dream of racing over the Verrazano Bridge. Sneak a group on the bridge, have a line of cars that hold traffic, pray to not get taken to jail after, and just drop pictures of it the next day.
Nowadays, I keep thinking about going abroad again. Berlin? Paris? Copenhagen? YES PLEASE.