What are you gonna do?

If you haven’t seen, WS RD Greg Soderlund has posted an explanation of the WS lottery process to be held on Dec 5 in Auburn, on the Latest News Page.  Thank you, Greg, for clearing up many of the questions that were raised in the comments on my last post.  With 465 names to be selected, it looks like, after all the automatics, aid station, sponsor, etc, spots the probability of getting selected is somewhere around 18%.

While I’m naturally an optimistic person and I don’t really want to think about this, I’ve been asked many times, “Craig, what are you going to do if you don’t get selected in the lottery?”  While I know the answer they’re looking for is what other 100 I’ll do, I’d like to think they’re asking what I’m going to do at WS instead of run.  As many know I have spent more WS race days not racing than racing.  There are many ways to enjoy the race.  You could help crew and pace a friend or somebody you’ve never met.  You can work at an aid station, join the safety patrol, work at the pre-race stuff at Squaw, the finish line at Placer HS, or work as a comm person.  You could also work at the training runs in Feb and Memorial Day weekend.  While they aren’t recruiting volunteers for the 2010 race yet, check out the volunteer page for more information on volunteering.  Wouldn’t it be interesting if WS gets so many volunteers that they have to institute the first ever volunteer lottery?

See you at the lottery on Dec 5.  Bring It On!

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  1. I can relate to the post…in a major way. For 9 years I have come out to help,cheer, crew, pace at WS. It really is a good time to be out in NoCal so for those not lucky enough to get into the dance…make a trip,there are rewards for all that day.
    Looking forward to the draw….

  2. Mom just absolutely loves the whole WS event, starting with the lottery, the training camps that you have and then there’s the race. For a spectator it is, for me, the event of the year. It all started many yrs. back; lot’s of cheering, working aide stations, never pacing anyone, crewing a couple of times, and just hangin out with all our friends who are participating in one way or the other. Doesn’t get much better than that for a me. Thank you for the article Craig,

  3. If I don`t get selected at the lottery my plan is to slip some sleepy-time into AJW`s beer the night before the Race,then I`ll take his bib number and chip of course I`ll need a wig and a few other add-on`s,I`ll talk really loud at all the aid stations,run super fast and not get chicked.
    When AJW wakes up on Sunday I`ll let him go to the awards as himself….I hope I get selected,obviously I`m a “special consideration”.

  4. Would love to volunteer at Western States in 2010. Would consider it an honor and a privilege.

    If I’m not running, or if one of my friends doesn’t get in and ask me to help pace, I hope to pack up the family in any case for our first trip to Western States.

  5. I had so much fun volunteering last year at both the Memorial Day training camp and on race day that I didn’t even put my name in the lottery this year. (Plus, I can’t handle any more rejection. And also, I’m already in for 2011, and I hate to get greedy.) Although I’ve yet to run the race myself, I sort of wonder if being out on the course helping out isn’t actually more fun than running it. All of the drama, none of the puking. So whoever is in need of crew/pacer for 2010, let me know!

  6. Seems I am VERY late to respond to all the comments on the lottery topic. Fortunately, Greg cleared it up a bit. I have been working around the clock not only on the lottery stuff, but also all the other events currently running on ultra signup.

    The key point to the whole online lottery debate is that the system was implemented to help RD’s handle the volume of applications. While I was at it, I wanted to give participants something fun to checkout and a way to confirm their application.

    Next year’s lottery will require qualification verification prior to the actual drawing. This won’t change the odds of getting in, but will limit the number of uncertainties after the drawing.

    Although the online lottery has made it easier to apply, applicants still have to qualify(basically walk a 50 miler, Ha Ha Ha), pay, volunteer, and then show up at the starting line. I do like the suggestion of a steep fee that goes to ultra signup 🙂

    Thanks for all the suggestions. All of these ideas have been presented to Greg and the board to consider, and I know they will.

    See you guys at the drawing!

    • @Mark Gilligan, Thanks for commenting. I thought maybe you had crawled into a cave to hide from the mayhem. Pretty clear by the number of comments that we all just want to know what is going to happen come Dec 5 (and thereafter). Keep working hard and if you want feedback on an idea before you implement it send it to me and I’ll post it on the blog. We got a few people that are willing to express their opinion here. Yes, see you Dec 5.

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