Hardrock 100 2013 Lotto Results

Hardrock 100While the Hardrock 100 is technically a “run,” there’s no doubt that folks at the front of the field are racing. Given that the previous year’s winners are the only automatic entrants, the elites (or whatever we want to call them) continue to display the spirit of Hardrock – they savor their entries, spend a week or two with the friends be it in an overstuffed housed or camping up on some pass, and respect the race as something that can crush even the most experienced of ultrarunners (even Hardrockers). While it’s laudable for anyone to complete Hardrock, there’s no doubt that fans of the sport get quite excited about what’s happening up front at Hardrock and that’s why we’re letting you know which speedsters have a spot in the 2013 Hardrock 100.

The women’s race promises to be the highlight with a showdown between defending champ Darcy Africa (2012 post-race interview, her 2012 race report), four-time champ (’08-11) Diana Finkel, the incomparable Lizzy Hawker (if she gets in off the waitlist), and former Western States 100 champ Tracy Garneau. The race will also include both Hardrock Betsies: Betsy Nye won in 2003 while Betsy Kalmeyer has won five times. Anna Frost (her 2013 lottery application essay) and Nikki Kimball are the two most notable names not drawn in the lottery.

Karl Meltzer (2012 pre-race interview) suffered through a 7th-place finish at last year’s Hardrock, but his five wins make him a favorite. Former champ Jared Campbell also returns so he’ll be a threat. Joe Grant (2012 post-race interview along with Dakota Jones) is the top returnee from last year’s race when he finish second just 16 minutes behind Hal Koerner. Frenchman Sebastien Chaigneau should get off the waitlist and can challenge anyone as his TNF UTMB finishes show. The talent that didn’t make it into the race is incredible and demonstrates Hardrock’s tremendous draw. Guys not getting into next year’s race include Michael Arnstein, Adam Campbell, Mike Foote, Dave James, Kilian Jornet, Anton Krupicka, Dave Mackey, Luke Nelson, Michael Wardian, and Mike Wolfe … and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Automatic Entrants

Darcy Africa is the only automatic entrant in the 2013 Hardrock 100 on the basis of her win in 2012. Hal Koerner did not apply to defend his title.

Notable Men’s 2013 Hardrock 100 Entrants

  • Dan Barger
  • Jared Campbell (2010 HRH champ)
  • Jamil Coury
  • Nick Coury
  • Ricky Denesik (1998 HRH champ)
  • Neal Gorman
  • Joe Grant
  • Adam Hewey
  • Scott Jaime
  • Ted Mahon
  • Karl Meltzer (5-time HRH Champ: ’01, ’03, ’05, ’06, ’09)
  • Jason Poole
  • Chris Price

Waitlisted (with at least a remote chance of getting in)

  • Troy Howard (1st on the Everyone-Else list)
  • Sebastien Chaigneau (4th on Never-Run list)
  • Matt Hart (17th on the Everyone-Else list)

Notable Did-Not-Get-Ins and Waitlisted Folks with No Chance of Getting In: Jay Aldous, Justin Angle, Michael Arnstein, Jonathan Basham, James Bonnet, Adam Campbell, Duncan Callahan, John Fegyveresi, Mike Foote, Grant Guise, Shinsuke Isomura, Dave James, Kilian Jornet, Jason Koop (52nd on Everyone-Else WL), Anton Krupicka (49th on Never-Run WL), Ben Lewis, Adam Lint, Dave Mackey, Steven Moore, Luke Nelson (37th on Never-Run WL), Jack Pilla, Jason Schlarb, Brandon Stapanowich, Partrick Stewart (43rd on Everyone-Else WL), Eric Storheim, Paul Terranova, Brendan Trimboli, Dan Vega, Michael Wardian, Adam Wilcox (33rd on the Everyone-Else WL), Mike Wolfe, Nathan Yanko (38th on Everyone-Else WL)

Additional crowd favorites: Kirk Apt (1st on Vet WL), Tetsuro Ogata (Ogata was on the 2012 HRH waitlist, and he made it all the way to the top spot on the waitlist on race morning, but not into the race itself. For 2013, he’s 3rd on the Never-Run WL.), Steve Peterson (5-time Leadville 100 champ), Billy Simpson, Hans Deiter-Weisshaar

Notable Women’s 2013 Hardrock 100 Entrants

  • Darcy Africa (see above)
  • Darla Askew
  • Diana Finkel (4-time HRH Champ: ’08-’11)
  • Tracy Garneau
  • Betsy Kalmeyer (5-time HRH Champ: ’96, ’99, ’01, ’04, ’06)
  • Betsy Nye (2003 HRH Champ with many HRH podiums)

Waitlisted (with at least a remote chance of getting in)

  • Lizzy Hawker (5th on Never-Run WL)
  • Helen Cospolich (19th on the Everyone-Else WL)
  • Leah Fein (20th on the Everyone-Else WL)
  • Gretchen Evaul (18th on Never-Run WL)

Notable Did-Not-Get-Ins and Waitlisted Folks with No Chance of Getting In: Jennifer Benna, Candice Burt, Leila Degrave, Katie DeSplinter, Salynda Fleury, Anna Frost, Keira Henninger, Emily Judd, Nikki Kimball, Jane Larkindale, Emelie Lecomte, Sandi Nypaver, Jenny Pierce, Jen Segger, Becky Wheeler, Paulette Zillmer

Additional crowd favorites: Liz Bauer, Diane van Deren (2nd on Vet WL)

Call for Comments

  • Who are you most excited about running next year’s Hardrock 100?
  • Who are your early picks as the favorites?
  • Who’d we miss on our lists?
  • If you’re in, how excited are you to be racing Hardrock next year?

There are 142 comments

  1. Dean G

    Wow. When you look at the list of all the elite men that wanted to get in… And didn't…

    …how can you not wish they could have two Hardrocks on two weekends… One being filled with all of those elite runners. It is a testament to the appeal of the race that guys like Kilian were 'watching' the lottery live in an airport in Switzerland. I just selfishly wish I could watch all these guys compete against one another in the event that clearly has captured their imagination.

  2. jblo

    Wow, what an unfair process. Because they got a special dispensation from Congress to run this race, they should change the rules to let in as many first-timers as possible. As it is, it is basically a good old boys club. I strongly encourage all those who did not get in to poach the race this year.

    1. art

      no … it will be Joe Grant and Diana Finkel.

      I'm a big fan of Karl's, but he will take 2nd.

      Joe will be more hungry for the win than Karl.

      no one can beat Diana.

    2. Speedgoatkarl

      Keep in mind folks, even on a good day….I am running WS on a quest to beat Nick Clark's double WS and HR. And that will be under scrutiny too.. I have 3 weeks, Nick had two. I won't win HR, Sebastion Chaigneau and Joe Grant are the favorites, not me.

    1. emlovesapoodle

      jblo, you are very naughty and represent all that is negative in the world. So there! Good job to those great folks behind Hardrock.

    2. art


      since you seem to be monitoring this …

      I agree you guys have tried to be fair (although ultimately its probably impossible in everyone's eyes).

      But I don't understand the rationale behind the 2^N ticket formula for first timers. Do you have a short answer ?

      1. Dale Garland RD, HRH

        This system was developed by our selection committee, many of whom work at Los alamos labs. Blake Wood (bpwrlc@comcast.net) might be the best person to contact for how it was developed.

      2. Chris P.


        The best answer I can give, as I understand it, is that the 2^N formula for first-timers is to reward those who are persistent. If you looked at the ticket allocations for this year, you'll notice several names on the first timers list who had 32 or 64 tickets. That means those people have tried, and failed, to get into Hardrock 6 or 7 times. The new system gives increasingly better odds for those who have tried to get into the race year after year, and still gives some chance to those who put in for their first time.

        1. Blake Wood

          We felt we needed to do something for the folks who have been unlucky year after year. One option would have been to simply take runners who have never started in order of the number of times they've applied, from the most down to the least. But that would have meant that no first-time applicants would have gotten in. Providing 2^N tickets provided a strong bias toward those who have been on the wait list year after year, while still allowing some first-timers to make it in. We allocated 1/4 of the field to those who had never started a Hardrock as a compromise to preserve the "gathering of friends" feel of the run against the desire to get new runners involved.

    3. gijoe

      Well gee Dale, why would you bother to point out that you don't know who 'jblo' is? I suspect you do know and that jblo will pay for it in the next lottery–the reason you don't get more public complaints about your 'system.' You are welcome.

  3. Benjamin Nicholas

    I'm not trying to pretend I know a solution for the race (maybe they shouldn't allow pacers and double the allowed participants…?) but with such a difficult entry process and to literally have world-class runners like Kilian Jornet not able to enter a race, I find it hard to determine this race as one of the biggest Ultra's in North America. I believe that it is definitely the most difficult ultra in the US, but now all I think when I look at the list of past winners, you have to wonder if they were simply the best runner who got lucky in the lottery, and certainly were not the best runner who wanted to initially participate in the race. Just my two cents, not trying to downplay the race, it sounds incredibly epic, just sucks when you see runners of that quality being left on the sidelines.

          1. Benjamin Nicholas

            And Bryon is correct…! If the 'event' itself doesn't even call itself a race and has the ability to turn world-class caliber runners down year after year, clearly they are doing something right and the race has a magical buzz around it. I think I am just thinking from a fan's perspective that we would like to see all the top guys duke it out at the same time! But oh well, plenty of other opportunities during the year to witness that!

      1. Sean

        Scott, the Toronto Bluejays are, in fact, a Candadian-based team that is, in fact, eligible to play in the World Series (granted, they do have to qualify).

  4. Chris P.

    Yeah, that will totally do… something… Maybe it will make you a lot of friends? No one is stopping you from running the race course any time you please, but poaching the race is a stupid idea that's entirely driven by selfish jealousy.

    1. Pete

      The hardrock lottery process is far more fair then that of say western states. I like how there is only 2 automatics bids for the returning champions. I also like how they have a lottery for veterans and rookies. This is the best lottery process going and many other races should follow this example. At least hardrock recognizes it is run on public land and doesn't hand away a 1/3rd of the picks to who ever they feel like. I applaud you hardrock thanks for doing it right.

      1. jblo

        It doesn't seem fair to me that you have nearly 600 people who have never run the race vying for only 35 spots and people who have already run the race numerous times almost guaranteed to get in again. Why the special treatment for 5 time finishers? If anything, once you have run the course 5 times you should have your chances of getting in again drastically lowered. Again, this is all premised on the fact that HR100 got a special dispensation from Congress to run the race. Consistent with general legislative purposes, Congress would have wanted this special dispensation to accrue to the greatest number of people, not the good old boys club. Obviously, I don't think anyone should poach the race in terms of using the aid stations (which would probably be illegal anyway) but anyone can certainly run the trails anytime they want to and given the unfair selection process, I think they should. If nothing else, it might spur a higher entry limit. People should run the course with a SPOT and post it online. That way, Kilian could come over here shortly before or after the official race and actually win the race and set a new record. Finally, I have talked to many HR applicants who feel the selection process is rigged when you have Ted Mahon and Billy Simpson and RD's from other races and people on the HR board of directors getting in year after year. I'm sure you have a very fair process, but public perception being what it is you should strive for more transparency in the actual drawing. You are welcome.

        1. pittbrownie

          I've got into Hardrock five of the six times I've entered. But had I walked in on the lottery today, neither Dale nor Blake nor any of the other HR Board folks would have known who I was. So any perception of a "good old boys club" is mistaken. I know it's not as sexy as a conspiracy theory, but maybe some people are just lucky.

        2. Blake Wood

          I note that two members of our Hardrock Board of Directors ended up on the wait list in the Veterans lottery (Brett Gosney and Kris Kern). It is definitely NOT rigged.

  5. Alex from New Haven

    I like the new lottery structure. Fairness is relative to the value system you hold. The race directors and their close community have constructed a system that reflects the values and experience they hold dear.

    All you have to do to get into the race is wait. If you REALLY want to get in just put in every year and after 5-6 years you'll have 32-64 tickets and you'll get in. Notice that this rewards persistence MORE than the WS lottery. This is a sport of longevity. It's a sport where 60 and 70 year olds are finishing 100s.

    If you don't love it enough to wait 5 years I don't know what to tell you.

  6. Dale Garland RD, HRH

    Congratulations to the 140 selected entries for the 2013 Hardrock. If you are near a casino this may be a good day to try your luck! We had a record number of entries sent in to us and a record number of lottery tickets thrown into the hat (well actually a jar!). Thanks so much to Charlie Thorn and Blake Wood for overseeing , checking, double checking and triple checking the tickets and to the run selection committee for spending more than 4 hours conducting the lottery. If you’d like to see how the lottery was conducted, I encourage you to visit our website.

    Now for the frequently asked questions:

    I was lucky… what now??

    1. If you haven’t done so already mail in your entry check by JAN 6, 2013. ENTRIES THAT HAVE NOT PAID BY THAT DATE WILL BE DROPPPED FROM THE 2013 HARDROCK. This does not apply to foreign runners, who may still pay at runner check in. Please send your check to: HRH, 195 Ball Lane, Durango, CO 81301. PLLEASE DO NOT SEND THEM TO CHARLIE THORN IN LOS ALAMOS (where you sent your entry)

    2. Effective with the 2013 run we are asking for you to give back 8 hours of service to the ultra community. If you were selected for the 2013 Hardrock you have UNTIL MAY 31, 2013 to give back to our community. The certification form is on our website as well; please mail it to us at the Durango address above NO LATER THAN JUNE 1, 2013.

    I wasn’t selected or I was wait listed…any suggestions?

    1. We did not draw every name for the wait list. If your name does not appear on the wait list that means 1 of 2 things: a. your entry was not accepted into the lottery or b. you were not drawn for the wait list. Don’t worry.. we have logged all accepted entries that weren’t selected so that you will get tickets into the HRH lotteries in the future.

    2. Wait listed runners will be added to the field in the order of the wait list for your particular group. For example, Kirk Apt (#1 on the veteran wait list) will move into the field when someone from the veteran field notifies us that they will not be running this year.

    3. There usually is not a lot of movement on the wait list until April or May. I will call you and e-mail wait listed runners when there is an opening for you. This is a new wait list system so we don’t know your chances right now.

    4. We encourage everyone who can make it to come and join us in Silverton next July. Whether it is to help with the run*, be part of “Camp Hardrock” or just enjoy the beautiful San Juans, there is no better place to be than Silverton CO on Hardrock weekend!

    *( some aspects of helping are eligible for extra lottery tix in the 2014 Hardrock)


    We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible next July in Silverton!

    For the HRH crew,

    Dale Garland

    RD, Hardrock Hundred Endurance Run

        1. Bryon Powell

          GIJOE (and aliases), this is an example of inappropriate comment. It is neither mature nor respectful to make implicitly attack another on this website. If you want to air your grievances with HRH board, do so directly rather than attacking individuals outside the organization.

          1. gijoe

            So, pointing out that someone who compliments the RD has also gotten into HR year after year is inappropriate? Where is the implicit attack?

  7. Mike B.

    As I've gotten a better insight into the HRH lottery process each year, I've laughed a little more. With the ridiculous amount of talen left out each year, why couldn't the RD have a limited number of discretionary picks – say 5. It's their show, and they can and have changed the entrance process at their whim. Maybe do away with pacers (a la UTMB) altogether, or just for the discretionary picks. Cap the repeat participants to 5 years. Re-jigging the lottery process is nice, but acknowledge that the sport, this race, and the runners have progressed beyond the supported San Juan fun run the RD's seem to hold so dearly.

    1. Chris P.

      The board certainly has the ability to make any changes they want with regard to who they let in, and they've consciously chosen not to make special allowances or discretionary picks. Why? Because they can. They can, because they own the permit. I appreciate that people may think the lottery should look different than it does, and it's fine to make suggestions, but acting as though the HRH board is a bunch of morons for the way they've set things up, or saying things like "it's not fair" or "so-and-so should be entitled" is just simply not true. Fair is what the HRH board decides is fair. Why? Because they own the permit.

    1. Bryon Powell

      I've been offline for hours, running and then enjoying dinner. Any moderation was automatic. A very small number of people who have consistently posted inflammatory comments do end up having their comments held for moderation prior to approval. Such moderation is never because of a single incident AND, more important, is not deleted. All it means is that I or other moderators have a chance to read a given comment before it is published. Now having had the chance to read your comment, I've approved it for publishing.

      I very much value having contrary opinions on iRunFar. They encourage the discourse that occurs here. However, there are ways to politely and civilly engage in discussion and then there is engagement that strays from those principles. I would encourage anyone who is worked up about a particular discussion to write a comment (save it in a text editor), go out for a nice run, and then edit it when they come back. Really, all I want is for folks to interact in a positive (even if disagreeing) manner.



      Ps. As I also encourage many from time to time, it's much preferable to use a consistent pseudonym over time if you choose not to use your real (or otherwise easily identifiable) name.

      1. gijoe

        Well, since I have never been 'moderated' before, and my last comment wasn't 'inflammatory,' your assertion that, "Such moderation is never because of a single incident," doesn't seem valid.

          1. Bryon Powell

            I will once again reiterate that I would like to speak with you directly regarding your activity on iRunFar. I have reason to believe that you've used no fewer than four aliases to comment on iRunFar with different (and variable) "email addresses" for these aliases. Therefore, I have no way of privately reaching out to you. That's unfortunate.

  8. Jon Smith

    I'm with Mike B. – why o why, but especially at HR, are there pacers allowed in 100's?? Or better yet, if HR is supposed to be the purist of the Ultra's out there, just man vs. mountain, why are pacer's NOT prohibited, so that valuable trail space is only taken up by actual racers/entrants and not their "team members"?? I just find it very odd that 100 milers (most in the US) are individual endurance events, but they then transform into team events after mile 50, yet only the people paying to do the race get recognition. Either they are team events or they are not! Just voicing it here, because its this race lottery that makes it the most glaring…..

    1. Speedgoatkarl

      amen John, pacers should not be part of the game. :-) It would allow more runners, but the fact is, it's not the runners and their pacers, it's the crews that present the largest threat to the environment. how about no crew?

  9. MS

    Ripping on the race organizers for trying to maintain the integrity of the race does little good. They actually tried to make the lottery fairer to the newbies (like me) this year …

    A more constructive approach might be to direct your energy to pull the necessary permits, insurance, etc and having a second race … You could call it Rockhard and run the weekend after Hardrock in reverse direction …

    I'm just thankful someone developed the race into what it is, right wrong or indifferent in the hopes I can enjoy it some day … Like someone mentioned earlier if your name wasn't pulled today you can still run the course as its on public land … But hopefully out of respect to our community not as a bandit

      1. Jon Smith

        I'm not not knocking the organization at all, but it is interesting. Capped at 140 (paying entrants) due to permit restrictions, etc., but after mile 50, the run can "theoretically" double in size if everyone out there has a pacer. If its capped at 140, it should be capped at 140. Just sayin…. Good luck to all the participants!

  10. Scott

    Yep. Now post race the winner will face endless , "well what do you think would have happened if KJ,AK,Mike Foote,Anna Frost,…insert elite who didn't get in name…got in? How do you think he/she would have done?"

    I don't really see why you would refuse that potential competition level /fan excitement, media attention, etc. All those guys/gals in 1 race would have been epic! But noooooOOOOOOooOOooOOOo the lottery didn't pick them. Is there really that many people finishing in the times they will that you are worried about a crowded course, if you are then the rabbits would be better as they are on and off the course, generally not out there for 35 hours

    Bleh..maybe I'm just bitter because I see that list and think about how much more excited I would be if those names were all on the start list. I would be bursting. As it stands I probably won't follow the race live at all because I'm now left with a lackluster feeling toward the whole thing. Skiing calls!!

    1. Amy

      I would guess that the RDs could care less if you or other elite-stalkers follow the race. It's not like HR is hurting for interest–look at the lottery #s. Plenty of friends/family will be following those that did get in the race.

  11. Pete

    Joe Grant is definitely the clear favorite on the men's side. 2013 is his year to win.

    Interesting to hear the citizen complaints about the entry process. Two years ago, Anton Krupicka was pining about the potential of HR100 being a world-class mountain run, if only they didn't make the elites go through the lottery. It's good to see HR100 stay within their charter even with the explosion in ultrarunning and the number of HR100 entrants.

  12. Darthrunner

    Anyone know the FKT for "Softrock"? (To be fair there's not much "soft" about doing the loop with no support.) I didn't get drawn this year but that doesn't mean I'm not gonna enjoy the beautiful San Juans or tell someone else how to manage their race.

  13. Luke

    2 thoughts:

    1. Glad to see the lottery that doesn't cater to "elites" or running companies, and gives the regular ultrarunner a chance that is just as fair.

    2. I agree with others who think pacers should not be allowed, not only at Hardrock but in all races. It lessens the need for mental toughness and individual resiliency.

    That being said, congrats to all who got in. I hope you have a great race. BTW, i've never run Hardrock, but hope to make it through the lottery one year too.

    1. Bryon Powell

      I agree with you on your first point, but not your second. Folks attempt ultras for a very wide variety of reasons. Some folks aim to challenge or maximize their "mental toughness and individual resiliency," while that's not the focus of others. I know it's not mine. There are some races without pacers, which is great for those who value the traits you've outlined, just as there are races for those who take on an ultra for other reasons and for whom having a pacer enhances the experience. There are enough races out there for all of us… and we can always create more to meet our individual and collective needs. :-)

  14. Dale Garland RD, HRH

    I am amazed and honored as to the level of interest our run generates. A couple of thoughts before I close out tonight:

    1. Hardrock is proud of our relationship with the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service. We work closely with them in determining what the 8 resouce areas we impact can handle. Due to the fragile nature of some of the terrain we travel through they are very cautious about how many runners are allowed. I will not put the holding of our run nor the exeriences of the runners who participate in Hardrock in jeopardy by ignoring their recommendations and direction. We are but 1 group of people who enjoy the San Juans andwe have to remind ourselves of what impact we have. To do something that detracts from others who want to experience the beauty and majesty of a San Juan experince seems very selfish and shortsighted on our part.

    2. The selection committee and myself constantly ask ourselves how we can hold true to the values of Hardrock while expanding the opoportunities for as many people as possible to be part of Hardrock. It's a delicate balance for sure.

    1. Bryon Powell


      Thanks for chiming in here even though you had no need to. It shows what the race and its perception mean to you.

      When demand far outstrips supply, allocation becomes a huge issue. No matter what the method of allocation, some will prefer (or demand) the allocation be made differently. In the end, each allocator must determine the core values by which it allocates. As an outsider, it seems to me that Hardrock has long had a steady focus on two principles – non-meritocracy and community.

      More than an other running event(with bib numbers) that I've attended, Hardrock, as a whole, truly is a "run," not a "race." Yes, some folks do race it. We all know that, but that is not nor has it ever been the focus. To quote the runners manual "This run follows routes laid out by the miners and is dedicated to their memory." and "the course is designed to provide extreme challenges in altitude, steepness, and remoteness." Seems to me the race is about an individual engaging him or herself in challenging terrain… rather than providing a forum for elite competition. From as far back as I've been in this sport (over a decade), this stance has long led to champions of the recent past not getting in and the same goes for other "elites." Bravo to Hardrock for sticking to its chosen principle of letting all (capable) runners embrace the challenge of the course.

      Since my first visit to Hardrock in 2005 and in every visit since (at least five total), I've been impressed by the community that is Hardrock. It's the racers, the crews, the volunteers, and the town that create an oversized sense of community and tradition. Community and tradition that cannot be perpetuated effectively without those within the existing community there to pass it along. While there's enormous energy surrounding a race like Western States and even more with UTMB, the size and turnover at such events prohibits there from being that same strength of community.

      To open the lottery equally to all with today's overwhelming demand or to cave to pressure to allow in a selected elite field would be the death of Hardrock.

      1. mike_hinterberg

        Bryon, I find your comment above regarding the HR tradition, and your other comment above regarding pacers, to be very refreshing. I applaud your ability to support and cover newer races with higher prizes that reward talent and results…but also respecting the traditions of egalitarianism and enjoyment of the wilderness in other runs.

        1. Bryon Powell

          Thanks, Mike. While I get (very) excited about following a super competitive race and certainly have ideas for making some races more competitive, I cherish the little low-key races for what they are. That plays out in my own running and racing. Yes, I love running Western States … and Leadville and Wasatch and UTMB… and other marquis races as my focus races, my buildup is at little local races. I probably have half a dozen I'm considering in the lead up to WS in June and all but one is in Utah… and the other is a tiny race in Wyoming that's no further away then some of the Utah races. Likewise, I love many of my adventures outside of racing and far off the radar. The spotlight is awesome, no matter whom it's on, but so's the crisp moonlight on the dark side of dawn or dusk out on a remote trail with but a friend and a pair of running shoes.

          I generally try to keep quiet on the editorializing… but maybe one day I'll be confident enough to share some of my other views…

      2. AJW


        What a great comment! Thanks for writing it. Ever since my first trip to Hardrock in 2009 I have been in awe of the community nature of the event. Sure, there are other events that have a great family feel about them but Hardrock is in a class by itself when it comes to engendering community and celebrating that aspect of the experience. I hope they never cave to the elites (or whatever we call them:).


        1. Jon Smith

          Per Dale: "Due to the fragile nature of some of the terrain we travel through they are very cautious about how many runners are allowed", the race is thus capped at 140. Also runners over age 60 can have pacers the entire 100 miles. Last year there were 80 official finishers, which means that if they all had pacers for part of the race, there were up to 160 people on the trails, perhaps even more.

          So my question is, why are additional pacer runners allowed if there is a "cap" of 140?

  15. Bohica

    I love Hardrock for what it is, which includes loving it for what it isn't. It isn't a race, it's a fun run. It celebrates everyday people who came to that rugged area to make a living by swinging a pick into rock. It's special because of it and as my Grandpa says, the best things in life are worth waiting for. In this world of instant gratification, applying, waiting, and running other 100's to prepare is a part of a the long journey that I really look forward to.

    This is the first year I applied to Hardrock even though it is a race I've long followed. I grew up in Colorado and have dreamed about being this event since I started running 100's. The reason I waited to apply is this race deserves people who take it seriously and do not take it for granted if they get in. In my tiny little brain, if I applied before I felt like I wasn't ready, then I feel like I was doing Hardrock and its participants some injustice.

  16. Brad S.

    Hardrock is such an awesome race. While I know it has been said 1 million times before, I would love to see all those top level names get in the same race and go at it. Is there any possible solutions to this? Maybe have them start at a different time? Or not allow pacers so there are overall less runners on the course to allow for a bigger field? I'm sure it's probably a 'beating the dead horse' topic, but I will continue to hold out hope to see such a line-up!

  17. Milo

    I think it's refreshing to see a mix of elites and regular people and to see that just because you are an "elite" and write a cute little essay doesn't mean you automatically get in ahead of all the regular people who applied on time. Seems like there's a lot of favoritism toward the so-called elites in ultrarunning so nice to see a mix of entrants. Good for you RD and selection committee for selecting a variety!

  18. olga

    It was a very fair process, waited well too. While I have a very dumb luck and am very sad, I applaud the management of the race to stick to what was as much as they can. Way to just be.

  19. Dave M

    To not get in makes me appreciate the ultra experience even more.

    Suggestion; every other year make HRH open only to first timers. I'd bet those who'd run it before (or 5x+) would be fine with this.

  20. Neal Gorman

    If I had to guess I would think that the first time entry lotteries were introduced in ultras the people most hurt and upset over their introduction were the actual race directors and race board members in charge of creating and setting them up. I wonder what it felt like for those brave, few, visionary runners to knowingly, willfully institute a vehicle of discrimination and exclusion within a community they love. To essentially be forced into doing so in the greater name of fairness for all due to overwhelming demand.

    Now, as the sport grows and lottery numbers continue to swell is it possible for these same folks to feel any less pain about having to turn away even greater numbers from their events? I highly doubt it.

    C’mon people. Use your heads. Everyone wants to run Hardrock because everyone wants to run Hardrock. A crowd draws a crowd, in this case for good reasons, and there is no perfect entry/electoral system known to man/woman for gaining access that would satisfy everyone’s opinion of it even if such a system did exist.

    And to the point about the number of entrants… Even if HR were allowed to double the number of entrants why should they have to? Just because of demand? If I owned a business that made widgets and my product was so popular that consumers demanded I make more and I simply chose not to because I liked my business and its size just the way it was what would happen? Other markets would open up to fill the demand and customers would eventually stop complaining move on. Well, the latter has happened in ultras. There are event opportunities happening everywhere all of the time. Yet some continue forcing the issue with HR and other races. Why can’t people accept the fact that some things aren’t going to change just because others want them to?

  21. Clark

    Wow, there are some extremely insightful comments here, thanks everyone. Every time I think I somehow have it all figured out in my head, I learn there is no such thing.

    Scott – like you, even to me it just doesn't seem as exciting when viewed from a afar (cyber-stalking as per Amy) without the 'big names' in the field. Indeed, this is what made the Trans Vulcania perhaps the most exciting event of the season (or the one in Spain the next wkd) for cyber-stalkers, heck I remember going to bed just after the race started and waking up just before Dakota crossed the line, technology is just out of this world anymore. But, as Byron noted, when you're there on the ground (Silverton), before, during, and after the race, there is absolutely no less excitement, in fact quite a bit more, regardless who's in the race. The excitement of the racers, pacers, crew, aid station, and local communities is staggering. I could go on and on about some of my experiences, but those who have been already know. While I'd love to see some kind of system to allow a limited number of names in the race each year based off some logical process (perhaps simply just the winners of the qualifying races), not if it would be at the expense of the closing ceremony in the gym.

    The ceremony in the gym, probably only known to those who have been there in person, celebrates each and every finisher virtually equally. Everyone is called up to shake Dale's hand, he has a good-natured quip about them, and everyone cheers. After all, everyone who finished did the same thing, namely trek night and day thru majestic mountains for 100M, and they absolutely deserve it. It ain't no 5K.

    The danger Byron cautions against is this turns into some kind of globetrotting factory-team expo style event, where the names become the focus. There are no shortage of such events around the world, and to turn HRH into another would really go against it's heritage.

    I do believe there is a balance of some kind that can be achieved, but I don't know what it is right now. I do applaud the race committee for continuing to evolve the process over time, and in the end, that is probably the right answer (evolution vs revolution).

    Over and out

  22. Joe G

    Forget about the "elites." They are not any more special than a mid-packer. If elites put in for the lottery enough times, they will be in when their time is due. Giving away a coveted spot to some "flash-in-the-pan hot shot" is nothing short of a rip off to people who have been waiting patiently for years. (the hot shots are also the ones who tend to DNF a race when things go awry). The run is held in the most beautiful setting I have been in, and ANY runners who wait their time, deserve those spots the most.

  23. OldGoat

    Two years ago, after another unsuccessful lottery bid, I decided to do the route on my own. My goals, which I met, were to finish under 48 hours, see as much of the route as possible during daylight, and have a great time. I had two family-supported aid stations and had a refreshing nap in the camper half way through. Without the 13 aid stations and traveling alone for most of the time, I consider it "HarderRock". This year, my fifth year of application, I have been selected as one of the 140. It will be a great personal experiment to me to compare the two equally legitimate means of doing the route. Bottom line; if you want to do Hardrock, do Hardrock.

  24. Tom

    Thanks for providing a place for civil discussion of topics. I am new to the ultra world and find it a refreshing place with down to earth people doing what they enjoy. Lets keep the sour grapes, he said she said out of what we like doing.

  25. Chris P.

    I especially appreciate the comments that Bryon, Neal, and Clark have made in this discussion. I think they all show a mature and logical perspective on all of this.

    In an attempt to turn the discussion back toward what was originally intended in the call for commenets, I'm really happy that Eric Lee got a good waitlist spot and that he should finally have his chance to make it to the starting line. I'm also happy that both Coury brothers who applied for the lottery made it in. I'm glad that on the men's side some past champions will have the chance to battle it out against some of the guys who have done well in the past (Troy, Jaime, Joe Grant, Mahon, Jason Poole) in addition to the new blood of fast guys (Neal, Seb). Similarly on the women's side, I'm happy that the mix of past champions and less experienced fast women should make for a good race. Additionally, I'm excited to see some of the folks running who I know will do their part to maintain the spirit of the event – Homie, Chris Gerber, JT, Pete Stevenson, Deb and Steve Pero, Rob Youngren, etc…

    Also, just to throw it out there, I'll be looking for someone to pace, so if you need a pacer just let me know.

  26. Marco

    I didn't get in either and that sucks. Maybe because I didn't enter the lottery?. Well, I think it's unfair that they didn't read my mind and put my name in the lottery. :)

  27. Jon Smith

    My last comment here on the pacer & cap thing, because I do think its fuzzy. 2011 results showed 13 runners age over 60, who are allowed pacers for the entire course. This means that even though there is a cap of 140, there could actually be 153 runners taking the start line and it could theoretically grow from there. And, no pacer has to deal with the lottery…or pay, yet they get the full aid station support just like the paying entrants. If we are trying to protect the environment, why do pacers get to sidestep the environmental cap? Wouldn't it be simpler, more earth friendly, if there was a real cap of whatever number paying entrants and thats it, end of story? And no, I have never tried to enter HR and not trying to give the organizers a hard time – just trying to get some clarity for those who are trying to get in.

    1. Bryon Powell

      I'd guess there's a very simple answer to all this – the HRH board has a very good feel for the effects of 140 registered starters (and their pacers, crew, and required race support) have on the course, the logistics, and the environment. Sure, they could frame the cap another way (i.e., 250 runners of any sort on the course at one time), but the number of starters is easy to understand and easy to enforce.

  28. Elite Pete

    I heard there's a new Mission Impossible film coming out next year with a very short Tom Cruise playing a just as short Kilian Jornet.

    The plot: Can Kilian and his well rounded team of Silicon mask wearing hard-men manage to get him into the Hardrock 100?

  29. Jim

    I seem to repeat this every year when the lotteries are drawn.

    We can all complain about how it's not fair for first timers, elites, etc., but it's not YOUR race. If you don't like the rules, don't apply and put together your own run. Does it suck to not get into the high profile races year after year, yes. Do I complain to friends, yes. Do I criticize RDs online, no.

    Cheers to all the RD/boards that make decisions and stick to them.

  30. Dom


    Heartache, sadness, be gone from the hearts of San Juan FOMO-ers. Dakota Jones is pumping up a gorgous 50ish miler on the trails of Telluride, sure to be as impressive or greater to Imogene Pass to the locals of Telluride (they'll still act like they've never heard of Hardrock).

    Telluride is an amazing place, your gnar cravings will be fed.

    1. Brian

      Nice! That looks pretty cool.

      Has anyone heard any updates regarding the proposed Silverton 100K race that the RD for the Golden Gate Dirty Thirty was going to put on?

    2. Chris P.

      Thanks for sharing that, Dom!

      Brian, the last email that Megan sent to past Dirty Thirty runners said she would know whether the permit is approved by January 1st, and I assume would know a definite date at that time (either July 27 or September 7). I don't know anything beyond this, such as what the proposed course looks like.

  31. Shane

    Just wondering. I've been to Leadville, which can be a total zoo, a few time for the 100( MTB and run ). Too many runners and riders there and obviously not enough spots at Hardrock.

  32. Tim

    All very interesting, I guess I am still wondering about John Smith's comment, see below at the very bottom.

    I also have a few other questions which I know have or have not been brought up a couple of times. If it is indeed a "run" why the trophy at the end?

    Also regarding the lottery, there was an interesting point made about persistence and those that kept trying to get in each did accumalate alot of tickets and were chosen this year, much to which they deserved. My question is why for some is it almost guaranteed that they will get into the race is this HRs way or rewarding them?

    What is wrong with the idea of just putting everyone's name in a jar / hat one ticket only and just pull the 140 names.

    Has the USFS showed any sign that the field "runners only" can be expanded in the future or if the course is "re-worked".

    Below is John Smith's statement:

    Per Dale: “Due to the fragile nature of some of the terrain we travel through they are very cautious about how many runners are allowed”, the race is thus capped at 140. Also runners over age 60 can have pacers the entire 100 miles. Last year there were 80 official finishers, which means that if they all had pacers for part of the race, there were up to 160 people on the trails, perhaps even more.

    So my question is, why are additional pacer runners allowed if there is a “cap” of 140?

  33. Clark

    Thanks Chris.

    BTW, I call dibs on pacing Tetsuro Ogata (Bryon snip: Ogata was on the 2012 HRH waitlist, and he made it all the way to the top spot on the waitlist on race morning, but not into the race itself. For 2013, he’s 3rd on the Never-Run WL.). He was staying at the hostel last year and I saw him checking out his standing online in the lobby the morning of, and the secret untold story is he was literally five minutes from in. You see, in the gym Dale called out five minutes to check in – Hal where are you??? Yes, THAT Hal! The rest is known history of course, except this untold story: I then saw Tetsuro and several junctures/high passes around the course (Grant Swamp, Little Giant, maybe more, it's all a blur now) taking pics and enthusiastically cheering everyone on. Wow, what a guy!!! This is the spirit of Hardrock, the things experienced on the ground but maybe not so much online. I salute you Tetsuro, and I'm here for you if you need a pacer this summer.

    (Note to everyone else: I already got the jump on this by reaching out to him thru one of his other friends via the HRH email list, but if pacing him has to turn into a lottery of it's own, so be it)

  34. MonkeyBoy

    Hi, Jon

    I am not going to put words in the RD's mouth, but I cannot imagine that anyone up there is more aware of how many runners, crew members, volunteers, pacers, day hikers, flower pickers, marmots and ghosts of mining past are running around those mountains in the San Juans more than the folks associated with putting on, directing, course marking and cleaning up after the Hardrock 100. The "cap" they have arrived at takes into consideration the total potential volume of traffic. They understand that the event itself and the folks in town to participate are just "visiting" and they want to leave as positive an impression as they can on the area surrounding. It's a partnership. Most RD's get that and arrive at the number accordingly. The relationships with the Forest Service, the Town, etc are priceless and viewed more as partnerships and stewarding.

    I don't have the definitive answer to your question, but that is the logic that makes sense to me. This question gets asked every year of several races that are popular and folks don't get in.

    Jon, were you in the 'Never started" Lottery? Where you from?

    1. AJW

      While Karl and a few others have managed to run HRH very well without a pacer I honestly feel that it's one of the few races where I actually want a pacer to look after my safety. At 4am up over 13,000 after running 75 miles your mind and body do some pretty wacky things. Having a companion actually makes it a bit more safe. But, that's just me…AJW

  35. Anonymous

    As a guy who just finished his first year as an ultrarunner, I'm always willing to consider that I'm missing something here, but two things seem very, very clear from reading through all of the above: A lot of people really want to run HR, and the course is always open and available to run (ignoring, willfully, weather conditions and such for the moment) on, so with the exception of that one weekend a year when the official event occurs, why not go do it? It already has a name, and people keep track of the times, if it's that important, have a medal and T-shirt and bumper sticker made up, you can even "brag" that you didn't need to win a lottery or use aid stations 'cause that's how tough you are…

    As I say, it was my first year, I live in SoCal so there's plenty around, I entered and finished most of them, but my favorite two courses so far? The Grand Canyon and a 30M section of the JMT — and not even a bib# to show for it!

    Just sayin',

    JV in SD

  36. Wyatt Hornsby

    Congrats to everyone who got into Hardrock! I've always thought of the Hardrock entry process as fiercely objective and system-based. This year you have some incredibly awesome runners who simply won't get in. My impression of Hardrock has always been that it's not about racing or even putting the best mountain runners in the world on the same course. It's an experience that is open to all who qualify. I think Dale et al have done a great job of designing and refining the lottery system.


        1. Jon Smith

          If there is a time given at the end,there is a finishing order, and everyone is trying to do their best, its a race even if its called a "run"…

  37. Blake Wood

    Our permit is written with the understanding that pacers are allowed, so it is not simply a matter of xxx humans on the course with us dedicating xxx-140 of the slots to pacers. And the decision to allow pacers is not accidental or incidental – I always have pacers, typically non-ultrarunning friends, high school kids I coach, and my daughters. Pacing is a great way to get the next generation of runners turned on to ultra running (and in fact, the first of my high school pacers finished Hardrock last year, and another applied this year!)

    However, it is more than just our BLM/USFS permit and the impact on the terrain, Jon. Logistically, runners require many more resources than pacers. Pacers rarely need to be evacuated from the course, or use an aid station volunteer's sleeping bag, or sit in an aid station in a delirium. Pacers typically take care of themselves in aid stations, where the runners typically need to be attended to. Plus, there is the fact that a huge race feels less friendly and "family-like" than a smaller run, and this is one of the aspects of Hardrock that is most valued. I think that Hardrock with 250 or 300 runners wouldn't feel like Hardrock anymore, and would STILL leave 500-600 applicants disappointed!

  38. Josh

    Well, you weren't the favorite in Steamboat either! Perhaps Joe & Seb might be slight favorites, but only a fool would discount the speedgoat!

  39. Phil Jeremy

    Having read all of the above and accepted the HR tradition and fairness etc etc it still seems just plain odd to me that Killian,Tony and the like don't get in.Its fun to watch the best of the best battling it out and if I was Karl or Joe I'd want them in….Imagine the 100 metres without Usain Bolt.

    When I talk to non ultra folk about this they just give a shrug as if to say 'no wonder we're not interested'. I feel this sport will always be marginalised if this attitude pervades…and I suspect many ultra folks are quite happy about that. I think its a shame. What's wrong with having tradition and healthy competition side by side?

  40. Pete

    wetsern states is just as flawed if not more so. The bottom line is these races are run on public land with limited spots. I like how hardrock does their lottery. Frankly more runs should follow this mold. The western states lottery is very cheated and the same people run it year in and year and have a sense of entitlement. At least hardrock is trying to incorporate more new faces.

  41. Mic

    Late to the party, but thought I'd chime in.

    There was a recent past thread about the explosion of ultra racing. The number of ultras in the USA has gone from some 40 to over 100 in ten short years or so.

    I think effect has corrolation in the lottery races that exist. I vowed to never run a lottery race and maintained that value for years. Then I got sucked into they hype of a race. Big let down.

    It's like not knowing if you'll be invited to Senior Prom.

    Then there is the dreaded wait-list.

    I guess, I'm happy paying for a race, knowing that I have a spot and training specifically for that race.

    IMHO, I don't see how it can't be negotiated with Parks people to have an extra 250 people, but absolutely no spectating. Many cycling races have this policy, leave your "Poochy Coochy Whoochy girlfriend/boyfriend, husband/wife" at home.

    It think it's about negotiating with the Parks staff.

    It should be a partnership, "extra parking lots and shuttle to Race central", "Your park will be safer in and around the time of the race, especially on race day", "exposure for your infrequently visited Park", "more racers and people petitioning for your Park to get extra resources."

    1. Speedgoatkarl

      mic. her'es the thing though, if no crew, spectating was "allowed" the trails would have to be closed to the public. that wont' happen.

      I could simply say I am a guy going for a hike, then spectate. I did that at WS one year, everyone had to take a shuttle to Robinson Flat and I was a "regular hiker". I drove right by. Too many folks would do that. It is what it is.

  42. Bryon Powell

    The thing is, there are plenty of big mountain 100-mile-ish races at which these guys can battle each other. Yeah, there might be something special that draws them to HR, but it's not the competition. For that, they can go to UTMB or Ronda del Cime or another extant race… or try to create their own ideal mountain showdown event. Not sure why an undeniably successful (at least in my eyes) event needs to change significantly to me fans needs or foster recognition of the sport among non-fans.

    1. Bryon Powell

      And, trust me, as someone who reports on these events and who knows Hardrock well enough (not to mention an ultra junkie), I'd love to see a showdown among 15 of the world's top ultrarunners of each gender. Holy crap, that'd be awesome… but, if you saw Hardrock, you'd know that its quaintness and community are its brilliance. A race like UTMB is like Barcelona or Paris or London or New York – it's huge and awesome and overwhelming and provides all things to all people… while Hardrock is the hidden mountain town not on the map. It's where your neighbor waters your rhubard if he or she see it starting to wilt or the cafe owner gives the elderly regular a call if he or she hasn't seen you in a couple days … not to force a sale, but just to see if he or she is ok. Both are beautiful.

    2. Jon Smith

      Bryon, you interview a lot of these runners so you might have better insight into the runners mindset for HR, but are you saying that runners at HR are not competing against each other? It may not be their #1 priority, but don't you think Diana Finkel, Dracy Africa, etc. toe to line to ALSO win?? It couldn't possibly be just because they want to take in the scenery, or could it? I don't think the participants turn themselves inside out to not only finish, but to do their best, and for the folks with big engines (elites) that means going for a win if its within reach. Dakota moves to Silverton to train for just a fun run? Its a special race, community, etc, but they would all love to WIN it! But I could be totally wrong…. :)

      Thanks for the forum Bryon!!

      1. Clark

        Jon – of course the competitors are there to compete, and those competitors near the front are absolutely hoping to win. I chose my words very carefully there, because being a 'competitor' is not necessarily about speed or talent, but it is everything about mindset. Those with a competitive mindset seek to find their limits, not only in races, but in training, preparation, gear, and etc… Toeing the line means putting everything on the line, regardless of ability.

        Not everyone shares this mindset. Other goals such as the challenge of the course, the beauty, the camaraderie, or otherwise might be their focus, I'm sure the list is long.

        Just like your local 5K/marathon/etc… And, it's all good

    1. phil jeremy

      As ever Bryon you give a good, honest, balanced view, especially concerning the rhubarb….and I do get what your saying. I have run London and spectated at UTMB and its a buzz.I've never been to HR but its on the list as is Speedgoat but I think Karl might agree that having Killian there last year gave the event an extra special buzz…..well it did for me.

      As a Brit, living in France, I'm totally immersed in tradition and its importance but no matter how qaint HR is when I and thousands of fans are following your feeds on iRunfar day and night, we get behind our favourites, just as any sports fan would.

      Hardrock has the reputation of the toughest and that's the reason we follow it and we (and the elite) want to run it. I don't know the answer but does HR want to remain an old mining town race/run…..or does it want to be a world class sporting event. At the moment I'm not sure what it wants to be….Is it a major event on the ultra calendar or is it a little folksy local race just open to the few? I'm on the outside looking in and I'm confused.

      1. Bryon Powell

        I'm not on the board nor affiliated with the race in any way, but I can answer the question – "I don’t know the answer but does HR want to remain an old mining town race/run…..or does it want to be a world class sporting event." – with confidence: It wants to remain an old mining town race/run…

        and with slightly less confidence and, again, entirely from my own perspective, has no interest in being "a world class sporting event" if that is interpreted as meaning an event that focuses on providing a platform for the world's best mountain ultrarunners to race one another in championship level event.

        … as far as I can tell, there's never been any confusion as to which of those two paths Hardrock has chosen to follow.

        1. phil jeremy

          Okay, now I understand. I can see that I, and others, have read HR wrong. I've been sitting here at home thinking that this is one of the big three events of the year (HR, WS, UTMB), like a grand slam thing….and it isn't….and doesn't want to be. In a way its a credit to your website that you have helped to engender such a belief and I mean this 100% as a compliment. Problem is I'm even more confused. As someone said earlier, Dakota decamping for a year sounds like a lot of commitment for a little old jog along some old mining trails.

          Its clear now that I and maybe others(even Killian)see HR a little different to how it sees itself. Its as if we are talking about Wimbledon being a little south London tennis club that every year just happens to have Federer et al just turning up at the gate for a few volleys…..as long as they can climb over the fence!

          1. Jon Smith

            The fact that every year there is a long discussion following the Lottery results, about what HR is and what it isn't means some things could still be clarified further.

            The word "run"…just confuses things. Its a big race, with few runners, thats hard to get into, and held in a very small town, surrounded by pretty peaks and thats the way its going to stay.

          2. Vlad

            Dakota is from Durango, which is about an hour drive south of Silverton (where HR takes place). For him, it was basically running on a home turf.

  43. Elite Pete

    If the race continues to grow at the rate it is doing and this, 2^N, methodology is continued then eventually it will be a race full of middle aged men.

    Oh wait, most folk who raced last year were middle aged men.

    1. Vlad

      It's worth remembering that both Anton and Geoff made it through the lottery last year, but each for his own reasons decided not to run (though Anton paced Joe G).

  44. montecervino

    man.. hardrock is a joke.. it's obviously that this race has gradually become undermined by partisanship… the race directors should cut the amateur list and add up to 30 extra slots for the elite..

    it's a real shame what this race has become!

    1. Yeti

      Make it 50 extra slots, no wait…make it all slots reserved for the elite! Give the people what they want! A head to head alpha male battle to find out just exactly who is the dominant pack leader. Just imagine the possibilities: The Wolfepaw vs. The Running Jesus, The Foote vs. Dbo, Frosty vs. them all, man it could be epic! So wake up and get with the program already amateurs, you really have no place in ultrarunning besides as spectating cheerleaders. Not only do you lose every race but you also finish like hours behind the talent anyway, so why even bother? You're all just crowding the singletrack of the gifted! ;-) Long live Hardrock!

  45. Collin

    Thought for you guys… It's kind of ridiculous to allow people who have been admitted but not shown up to the race to continue racking up points on the 2^n scale. When someone gets in and doesn't show up, for any reason, they ought to be reset to 0. This will encourage people to take the race more seriously…

    1. Vlad

      why such militant and intolerant approach ? … accidents, injuries and unexpected circumstances happen and it may not be your fault at all. Why should you be punished for that ? … besides loosing the entry fee you automatically make someone else from the waiting list very happy … maybe that deserves an extra ticket(s) for next year by itself.

  46. Jon Smith

    These are just some ideas for thought, for HD and ultra races in general. When space is limited in a race like HD and people are clamoring to get in, I feel it comes down to pacer spaces. First, a couple assumptions: 1)The permit at HD, for example, as has already been mentioned, is based on x number of runners and with knowledge that pacers are allowed (which can essentially double the number of runners). Not everyone uses the same number of pacers or crew and some don’t want any pacers right? What happens to that unused space, which has in essence already been permitted for?? It stays unused…. 2) I would argue that the vibe/feel of the race would be practically the same for 140 runners plus their crew/pacers as it would be with lets say 200 runners plus crew and less pacers – still the same general size. They are all still there to enjoy the whole atmosphere. 3) Most fans seem to be pining to see the fastest mountain runners in the world do battle on the most challenging courses 4) the ultra scene is progressing and races need to progress accordingly or risk becoming irrelevant.

    My CRUDE ideas:

    – Races with limited space set a total max of runners plus pacers that will be out on course (i.e 250). The # would be slightly less then the permit cap, just to make sure its not exceeded and piss off BLM/USFS

    – Lottery results are shown in the order picked – first to last

    – If any favoring is done, instead of favoring multiple time finishers in general, the lottery would favor those willing to run pacer-less

    – Two lotteries – one for pacers used and one for no pacers used

    – Big Engine runners “elites” – agree to not use any pacers for any of the race. They do it in Europe (even the American runners), why do they need them here in the US…and they are more than capable of fending for themselves out on the course aren’t they. Runners would just need to sign up as “elite” in the application

    o This would in essence clear up some space for more Big Engines to enter as participants and get in via lottery

    o If they can’t finish without pacers, they’ll just have to DNF

    – All others – give them an option upon application to use or decline the use of any pacers. Again, this would in essence free up space for others to enter the lottery

    o If they can’t finish without pacers, they’ll just have to DNF

    o If pacers are desired, they should sign up as a team from the onset, pay as a team (a little more than an individual) and results reflected as a team

    – Once the applications are submitted, the number of pacers can be calculated and correspondingly, the number of runners. Both numbers would fluctuate a bit each year, but there would be a grand total cap (i.e 250) each year

    – If the last person to get in via the lottery (non-elite) and their pacer list exceeds the race total cap, they are then given the option to run with less pacers to stay under the cap or not run at all, in which case the slot would be given to the person next in line.

    – Clear up language between run vs. race. They are all races, whether family friendly or not….

    What would this do ( I think…):

    – Allow for more elites to enter and others in general since non-used pacer space will be allocated

    – Keep the race the same general size, based on folks (runners/pacers) out on course or hanging in town the week prior

    – Keep the non-pacer race more pure – just mano-a-mano start to finish!!

    – Increase the race funds by having all racers & pacers pay an entrance fee

    – Make the results clearer by distinguishing between team efforts,individual effort & Elites

    – Less comments about “what could have been” and more about “what a great race that was!”


    – You’d still have lots of people pissed off every year for not getting in via the lottery

    Happy Holidays everyone!

  47. Blake Wood

    We chose not to make this distinction because we were unwilling to try to guess why someone withdrew from the run, nor to make a value judgement about their motivation. Plus, record-keeping for the >2000 qualified runners who have ever applied to Hardrock already takes a lot of time, and would be way worse if we had to track "motivation" so we could tell someone "no, you don't get credit for a DNS four years ago because we felt your sister getting married was not a legitimate excuse for withdrawing."

    In addition, with the run as oversubscribed as it is, we want to give runners every incentive to withdraw if they don't feel they are ready, so some other grateful runner can take their slot.

    Are people gaming the system by applying when they have no intention of running? Undoubtedly. But as long as they went to the trouble of running a qualifier, one reason for a DNS is as good as any other for us.

    1. Bryon Powell

      Monte Cervino, I know you may disagree with Yeti, but there's no need to start name calling here.

      Also, I think if you read the full discussion, you'll see that Hardrock hasn't "shameful become something," the event has always been about letting anyone compete and decidedly not an event focused on promoting elite competition. Why does Hardrock need to become something it isn't and never has been?

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