Two big qualms I had with Leadville are the lack of online updates during the race, and Winfield.
For two years now, I've tried to follow LT100 runners through twitter updates and it was incredibly frustrating to not know what was happening for 4, 6, 8 hours at a time. If I'm running in it, I want friends and family to be able to track my progress throughout the day...and night.
I don't think a single LT100 runner had anything positive to say about the road to/from Winfield. I've seen pictures of the circus at the turnaround and that portion of the race is a big turnoff. Six miles of running through a constant dust cloud kicked up by the passing of cars...ugh!
This week I shot an email to the new owners of the LT100 family of events, Life Time Fitness. They're based out in MN. I simply expressed my concerns and asked for even a hint of changes that might be made for next year. I assumed I'd eventually get some canned response. Well, the very next day, I got a sweet email from Peter Spencer. Let's just say they are totally on top of the "issues" from Leadville 2010 and are going to be making some much needed changes. He said that online updates will be "100% better" than this year. Seeing that there were none, they can't get any worse! He also said that a change WILL be made for Winfield. Right now they are considering the option of restricting all car traffic while busing crews/pacers out there. Another idea in the hopper is to build a trail along the main road from Hope Pass to Winfield.
I'd be lying if I said my email exchange with Peter didn't get me excited. Right now, I'm looking at the entire calendar for 2011 and trying to figure out if I can make it work. I will not let the year revolve around this race. I want family life and other commitments to continue as normal, with training fitting in rather than vice versa. This philosophy has worked in the past, but planning and training for a 100 miler is a different animal.