Sunday, December 11, 2011

Opportunity Knocks

Below is the content of an email I received yesterday.

Congratulations, you have been selected to participate in the 2012 Western States 100.  This email is being sent to all individuals who have been selected via today's lottery, Montrail Cup, 2011 Top 10 runners, special considerations, etc.

Next week we will be processing your payments and will notify you if we have trouble.  Please be patience while we work through all the entries and update the entrant's list online, this may take a couple weeks.

Mark Gilligan

This is good news.  I guess I'm headed to Squaw in late June.  And any lingering, self-imposed-pressure thoughts I had earlier this fall of maybe running a Montrail Cup race in an attempt to qualify for WS, well, they're definitely gone now.  I think I'll keep those travel expenses in my pocket and put them to use elsewhere, like maybe for a trip to France in late August to run around a big mountain, or for running the Grand Slam again.  What a summer that would be.

Up until yesterday I couldn't give a damn about filling my 2012 race calendar.  Now all of the sudden things are flipped and I am thinking hard about what adventures I might like to pursue.  Crazy how that happens.  No matter what, WS is paid for and I would be a fool to turn down the entry; therefore, running in California in late June is a definite.  Sure, I'd like to show up with quick feet, too.  That means a light early season race calendar.  Easy enough.  What about after that?  Should I go for UTMB in August or run the Grand Slam again?  What would you do?


  1. Easy for me to say (from the comfort of my living room and having never run an ultra) but I say go for UTMB. Being an east coast trail runner and an aspiring ultra dude, I would love to see another Blue Ridge boy do well in France. Obviously much was made of the misfortunes of the American's this past summer - go show them how we do it Appalachian style!

  2. Man, jealous. I'd be happy with either WS or UTMB.

    If you've got the money for UTMB, I'd head over there. No point in doing the Slam again until someone has broken your record and you can take it back again...

  3. UTMB you say, Gents? I agree. Entry opens in six days.

    Jon, running the Slam for a record time wouldn't necessarily be why I would even want to do it again- it definitely wasn't the reason why I ran it when I did. Simply, to me running the Slam is Ultra Running and Ultra Running is running the Slam. It is THE event in the U.S. and there is no other comparison in my mind. I could write a novel with my reasons for this opinion.

  4. YES you must come and try UTMB and show that you are the only American elite trail runner who can compete and finish it well! will be my 3rd CCC, 100k
    ...thanks to


  5. Exciting!
    I vote for UTMB. Since you haven't done it, yet, why not?

  6. I agree with everyone else, UTMB sounds like a beautiful run especially since you haven't done it before. You would do great in France.
    Karl Meltzer may be contemplating taking on your Grand Slam record. You can take it back from him later.