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we now have 39 backyard races that have requested to be considered for golden ticket races in 2020.

update on the 2020 golden ticket races:
we now have 39 races that have requested to be considered for golden ticket races in 2020.
these represent 11 states (US) and 2 provinces (canada)
as well as 23 countries.
races that i know of that are not yet on the list are in singapore and japan.
as soon as i have enough information i will add those.

there is no charge to the races to be golden ticket events at this time.
we are just trying to help the backyard concept to flourish.
as it turns out, these are great everybody races.
they require less resources 
and a smaller space than your typical ultra,
and make a great venue for people to pursue personal goals in terms of distance.

in addition, they are just fun events.
rather than the entire field splitting up,
and only seeing a few people around your own ability
(or no one!)
the runners get to spend a lot of time running together,
even runners of disparate ability.

and we all know it is also an ideal venue to test the limits of your will to win!

so i am attaching the file of those races.
anyone who can help me fill in the missing information
(designated by ???)
i would appreciate it.
anyone who would like to add a race for consideration,
please send me the information,
and we will add it.

i am not sure of the exact method we will use to select the races,
but we are going to try to restrict it to one per country,
or region in the US and canada,
as we would like the golden ticket availability to be as evenly distributed as possible.
but don’t hesitate to add your proposed event just because one has already applied in the same country or region.
we will try to be fair and transparent with the selection process,
which will take place in august.
the one limitation would be the time of year,
as the bigs takes place in the middle of october.
any time after that would be for the next big’s,
and we don’t want to give out golden tickets too close,
because we want the winners to have a fair opportunity to recover and go for the championship.
september would be out,
and probably at least the latter part of august.
i am looking to get more input from people who have run top level backyards as to the recovery required before attempting another top level performance.

while there is no charge to be a golden ticket event,
the races have been paying the entry fee for their winner to enter the big’s backyard world championship.
and the south africa race has proposed to actually hold two events,
with the winner who has the highest total getting not only the golden ticket,
but also having his way paid to the big’s!
(i think that is pretty well a “state of the art” proposal!)
any race that can pull off something like that will obviously receive primary consideration.

the growth potential of the backyard ultra is hard to pin down.
they first became popular as an everyman event in sweden,
which now has about 30 backyard ultras and a population of only 10 million.
and they seem to be popping up everywhere else now.
pretty remarkable growth,
considering the first one was only held 6 years ago.

so now i will attach the excel file containing the list of races.
if i knew facebook better, i could probably guess where it will show up!


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Dear SB 100 runner and active followers

Effective 12:00 am April 27, 2019, the Santa Barbara Endurance Run series of events (SBER Marathons, SB50 and SB100) will officially be canceled, thus beginning the process to cease operations and be permanently dismantled.

I sincerely regret having to make this entirely unexpected and untimely announcement as I am well aware each of you has invested many hours and expense to planning and careful preparations of your training, travel and other logistical matters. does not typically participate in the refund process. However, Mark Gilligan at has made an exception. will be processing refunds to the account you used to make complete the registration. Refunds will be completed between April 30th – May 3rd, 2019. 

My personal journey to create the event began in the summer of 2007 after the US Forest Service agreed to the feasibility of the proposed route and event concept. Shortly after that the Zaca Fire started and stalled permit process for 6 months,hereafter the regional Forest Service underwent a modest staff change which added an additional 9-month delay in the permit issuance process. The first edition of the event was hosted in June 2009. Subsequently, over the next 8 years, five significant forest fires and or weather-related phenomena required substantial alterations of the run event. Three of these fires happened within 90 days of the run event, needless to say, the burden of making alterations to keep the run event on schedule diverted attention from the many other things that I should have been focused on to make sure the run event and the runner realized a safe and memorable event. Throughout the years the feedback from runners was the generally positive and supported the idea to dial in the details and make it a better experience. 

As daunting and frustrating as these challenges have been, I (along with a dedicated and resilient group of volunteers) remained relentlessly committed to doing my very best to make it work,  no matter the personal time and/or financial investment and sacrifice.

I have come to terms that eventually fate could run its course and something will happen that jeopardizes the welfare of the runners, crew or volunteers, because I neglected to acknowledge that I was trying to achieve something that I cannot adequately provision with the staff, assets and or combination of resources.

I have met and hosted runners from many parts of this beautiful world, I have suffered the frustrations and agony with the many who DNF’d and shared the joy and glory with the many who finished. In closing this chapter in my life, I move on as a kinder, wiser, humble and matured friend, husband, father and business owner,the direct result of these past 12 years of my interactions with each of you,your crews, guests and families.