Press Release from the Dipsea Race Committee:
(Mill Valley, CA) The Dipsea Race is going live stream.
The 105th running of the annual Dipsea trail race from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach on June 14 will be available to watch live and free via the Internet following an agreement this week between Dipsea Race Committee Inc. and UltraSportsLive.TV, the premier broadcast destination for ultra endurance sporting events in North America.
Merv Regan, president of Dipsea Race Committee Inc., and Mike Cloward, CEO and Founder of UltraSportsLive.TV, announced the partnership.
“This is an evolutionary moment for this historic race,” Regan said. “For many years people have only been able to imagine what is like to compete in the Dipsea and now, with UltraSportsLive.TV, we will be able to show people – runners, volunteers, spectators, media worldwide – what the Dipsea is really like as it happens in real time. The goal of this partnership is to provide a new and unique view of this beloved and scenic trail race to a wider audience to follow step by step on race day.”
“USL.TV is very pleased to be a part of the legendary Dipsea Race—one of the oldest cross-country trail running events in the United States. And it’s right in our own backyard,” said Cloward, whose company is based in the San Francisco Bay Area. “We look forward to bringing live coverage of this event to our viewing audience—it will truly be a special experience watching runners from all walks of life traverse this legendary course.”
The Dipsea – the oldest trail race and second oldest foot race in America behind the Boston Marathon –is limited to a field of 1, 500 runners. Last year’s starting field featured competitors ranging in ages from seven to 80-year-old Barbara Robben, who ran in her 43rd Dipsea. There were runners representing 28 states (and the District of Columbia) from New Hampshire to Alaska plus three countries; England, Switzerland and Canada from Quebec to Vancouver.
Each Dipsea runner is assigned head starts based on age and gender, a time-handicapped event that yields surprising winners. The last four Dipsea race champions have been two-time defending champ Diana Fitzpatrick of Larkspur, a 56-year-old attorney and three-time Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier; Hans Schmid, a 72-year-old retired natural foods importer and distributer; Jamie Rivers, a 60-year-old nurse at the University of California San Francisco hospital; and Reilly Johnson, a nine-year-old, 52-inch, 62-pound pigtailed fourth grade student.
Dipsea runners compete on a challenging, treacherous and scenic GoPro perfect 7.5 mile course through Mt. Tamalpais State Park, Muir Woods National Monument and Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The race essentially begins with an ascent in Old Mill Park up three flights of steep stairs totaling 688 steps and the course eventually peaks at the summit of Cardiac Hill – 1,360 feet above sea level. It then descends down the narrow Dipsea trail through Steep Ravine, across the panoramic Moors toward the finish line at Stinson Beach where exhausted and battered runners can cool off in the Pacific Ocean.
UltraSportsLive.TV plans to have camera crews positioned at the start of the race in downtown Mill Valley, at the water/aid station at Cardiac Hill and at the finish line at Stinson Beach. Spectators at Stinson Beach will be able to watch the live stream of the race on a large flat screen TV
Last year’s race will be hard to top. Since entering her first Dipsea in 2000, Fitzpatrick, with a 16-minute head start, edged out 42-year-old runner-up Chris Lundy of Sausalito by four seconds and beat 56-year-old third-place finisher Brian Pilcher of Ross by nine seconds – the closest Dipsea finish in 25 years. That nine-second difference between the top three finishers was the tightest Dipsea race since 1988 when Kay Willoughly, Peggy Smyth and Patricia English placed 1-2-3 within 10 seconds.
The first nine finishers in last year’s Dipsea Race started in different age groups, a testament to the head start handicapping system.
Alex Varner of San Rafael, a scratch runner with no head start in the Invitational field, passed more than 400 runners and finished fifth last year with an actual time of 47 minutes and 59 seconds. He extended his Dipsea record by winning the best time award in the race for the fifth consecutive year. No runner has won the race with the fastest overall time since seven-time Dipsea champion Sal Vasquez in 1985.
If Fitzpatrick manages to beat the odds and the field for a three-peat at the 105th Dipsea on June 14, she would become the first runner to win three consecutive Dipsea races since Vasquez in 1984.
The Dipsea Race Committee Inc. is currently comprised of five volunteer directors whose purpose is to organize, support, and preserve the Dipsea race on the second Sunday of June of each year. It works in conjunction with the Dipsea Race Foundation, a charitable non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation whose mission is “to inspire our community to forever cherish the race, the trail and the tradition.” Follow the Dipsea Race on Facebook and Twitter.
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