So today is THE day. For those of you who have run a qualifying race, then today is the Western States Endurance Run entry day; Entry to the oldest, most prestigious and arguably greatest ultra marathon on the planet.
Are you excited? Well I sure am.
But before you start booking your flights and getting all unnecessary, lets look at the facts.
In 2015, the number of runners registering to race that year was 2,566, with a total ticket count of 6,601 – some runners will have been unlucky in previous years and earned themselves additional ticket which explains why the ticket count is higher. Based on an expected draw of 270 (the race has around 400 runners, the remainder of which are previous winners, race & lottery winners and sponsor allocations) and using a Monte Carlo simulation, the probability of being selected with a single name in the hat was 4.7%.
So in basic terms, if this is your first year you have about a 1 in 20 chance of getting in. Not great odds is it? Actually your odds are awful. But the good news is that you have to be in it to win it. I entered last year with one ticket and got lucky. So could you!
My advice is this: If you have a qualifying race, you can afford the $410 + entry fee and you are committed to training hard and getting to the start line in the shape that this race deserves, DO IT. You wont regret it. I promise you.
And if you get in? Well then the fun really starts. I’ll update you more on that after the lottery draw on 5 December. Good luck and hope to see you on the start line in Squaw!