The 2022 race lottery will be held on December 4, 2021 in front of a live audience at the Placer High School auditorium in Auburn, CA beginning at 8:00 a.m. PST. We expect to be done by 11:00 a.m. As names are pulled from the hat, they will be posted at https://lottery.wser.org as close to real-time as possible. There will also be a live video feed on our Facebook Page.
Each applicant ran a qualifying race of 100k or longer within the last two years to be eligible to enter. Some have done so for many years. Each runner who enters the lottery and fails to gain entry into the Run (and otherwise doesn’t gain an entry via other means such as an aid station, sponsor, or HOKA Golden Ticket spot) will have additional tickets in the hat when entering the lottery the following year, thus improving the probability of being selected. Every lottery applicant will receive 2^(n-1) tickets in the hat where n is the number of years entering the lottery without gaining entry. That is, 1st year applicants = 1 ticket, 2nd year = 2 tickets, 3rd year = 4 tickets, 4th year = 8 tickets, and so on. The maximum number of years for the 2022 lottery is 8 years or 128 tickets.
Beginning with this lottery, the requirement to enter consecutive lotteries has been relaxed. See our post from March 2021 for more details.
After the cancellation in 2020 and then starting fewer than our allowed 369 starters in 2021, The US Forest Service is allowing us to start 385 runners in 2022 (then 380 in 2023 and 375 in 2024). As we began in 2017, we are using a wait list model instead of overbooking like we had for decades to get the target number of starters which is the number we are legally allowed to run through the Granite Chief Wilderness. 162 of those 385 are automatic entrants. 223 will be drawn in the lottery. The final three entrants to get to 385 will be drawn from those in the audience. We will also draw an additional 75 names for the ordered wait list. The probabilities of being selected as one of the 223 in the lottery or 75 on the wait list (298) are as follows:
- 18 runners with 128 tickets, each has a 77.2 % chance of getting drawn
- 59 runners with 64 tickets, each has a 52.3 % chance of getting drawn
- 186 runners with 32 tickets, each has a 30.9% chance of getting drawn
- 328 runners with 16 tickets, each has a 16.9 % chance of getting drawn
- 514 runners with 8 tickets, each has a 8.8 % chance of getting drawn
- 722 runners with 4 tickets, each has a 4.5 % chance of getting drawn
- 1063 runners with 2 tickets, each has a 2.3% chance of getting drawn
- 3318 runners with 1 ticket, each has a 1.1% chance of getting drawn
So what are the chances of getting into the race if you are selected for the wait list? In 2021 we exhausted the wait list which was rolled over from 2020. In 2019 the last person to get a spot on the starting line was drawn 31st. In 2018 the 36th person on the list got in, in 2017 the 39th person got in. All the historical data from the wait lists can be found here.
Good luck to all.