Thursday, October 7, 2010

New Badwater Rules

Badwater has updated it's rules. Now you need at least three 100 milers under your belt to apply and the cutoff time has been decreased from 60 to 48 hours. The reasons for the decreased cutoff time are listed on the website and are excerpted below:

Given the historical trend of the whole Badwater race field getting faster, it was inevitable that the overall cut-off for the race would drop from 60 hours to 48 hours at some point. This will take place in 2011. The primary compelling reasons for this change are outlined here:

• First, this decision was made in consultation with a broad swath of Badater race veterans and staff. All agreed unanimously that it was time to make this change.

• In the past three years, an average of just six racers "needed" more than 48 hours, but less than 60 hours, to complete the race. In other words, in 2008-2010, 92.75% of race finishers did so under 48 hours.

• With racers geting faster and faster, the expense and time requirement of staying in Lone Pine an additional night has led to many of the racers and crews, including the 2010 men's and women's champions, not staying for the pizza party. The pizza party is a fun experience and the capstone of the event, and even more so with a large turnout.

• As alluded to in the previous point, those racers and crews who need or choose to leave on Wednesday will be able to save money, and those racers and crews will also use up one less vacation day.

• Closing the race course 12 hours sooner means 12 less hours during which something can "go wrong." Remember, in the eyes of all the government authorities which allow this race to continue, we are only as good as our last race.

• Tightening up the race field will allow the Medical Team, as well as the race officials and the webcast team, to do their jobs more effectively.

• Badwater is "the world's toughest foot race." Having a cut-off which reflects that truth underlines that reality. With most 100-mile races having a 30-hour cut-off, a 48-hour cut-off, rather than 60-hours, makes more sense for our 135-mile race.

Any thoughts? I'm still organizing mine because I am fascinated by this new development. I definitely have opinions on the new rules. Happy running, all!

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