Runners don’t just sign up for Western States. They must qualify by running an approved 100k or 100-mile race and throw their hat in the lottery with thousands of athletes vying for a slot. But this year, you may be in luck. As an official race sponsor of the 2016 #WSER we’ve been granted a single spot in the race to award to a deserving athlete. This individual will be chosen based on their commitment to the trail running community, something fundamentally important to the #WesternStates organization and Strava. Win a coveted spot in this historic #ultramarathon. Details and application on blog.strava.com (URL in profile). Photo by @trappephoto.

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Views of America’s most iconic ultra race– the Western States 100– are about to become accessible to runners who have not yet run the course.

This summer, a team of trail runners are taking to the Western States 100 route to film 360-degree views of the 100 miles. They are capturing the scenery using Google Trekker– a system similar to Google Street View but used for trail networks and more rugged terrain.

This concept isn’t entirely new. One French trail runner has been documenting scenes from the trail on camera to compile crazy documentaries for awhile now. 

The team that is getting the footage of the ultra will be led by American Trail Runner Association’s Richard Bolt and will consist of three of four trail savvy runners. Rather than run the course though, they will hike it with the Google Trekker camera with them. That’s a backpack-mounted system with 15 cameras and a GPS.

The hike is expected to take between four and five days starting at California’s Squaw Valley and finishing in Auburn. It should start on June 20.

Last summer, Google made their Trekker available to third party organizations. Though the hike is happening in June, the video won’t be available until early August. The expo for the race is on June 24.

Canadian runner Rob Krar won the last two editions of the Western States 100. The runner is originally from Hamilton and though he swore off running after university, he made a wicked comeback in 2013. He is one of Canada’s best and most recognized trail runners.


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