Leadville 2023 Race Thread

Continuing with the theme from the last couple of years, figured I’d kick off a Leadville 2023 thread. I’m officially in the race, anybody else at this point, or still waiting on the lottery?

My current dilemma is that I have a blue corral finishing time from WW100K last year (at the back, but not white) but could definitely make it into orange without killing myself, probably purple, green would be a stretch. But - with WW no longer a qualifier, nearest qualifier is Lutsen 6/24 and registration opens today. Anyone want to comment if it’s worth it? I’m at the Leadville camp the week after, so definitely have to monitor pace a little and not kill myself. At the end of the day, trying to put myself in the best possible place for race day.


Well, I guess I’m a little impulsive, but registered for Lutsen as a “Corral improvement” and practice race. If they announce a better qualifer for east-coasters, worst case I’m out $130.


Getting out of white is pretty important, the rest is incremental. It really depends on your goals. If you are shooting for under 9, it can be done from any corral, but it gets harder for the later corrals (more traffic and less strong riders to draft with).

If you do elect to do Lutsen, I’d leave it all out on the course and shoot for the best corral. I’ve never done the camp, but it’s not a race and you don’t need to be perfectly recovered for it.

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My Leadville goal is 8:59:59 or faster, so I’ll take every advantage I can get :wink: I think it’s achievable depending on how the next 8 months go, but we’ll have to wait and see.

And to be honest, I could use the practice and experience for pacing / nutrition. I haven’t done any events that long, ever.


My goal as well. I squeaked in by 10 minutes in 2020 and was 9:24 last year on similar fitness (even though the course was faster in 2022). What I discovered last year is that fitness isn’t enough for me to hit 9 hours. I need the stars to align with fitness, nutrition, some luck, and hyper focus/motivation. It takes a lot of motivation and mental strength to push that hard for 9 hours and I just didn’t have it last year. Definitely do some long events as prep if you can and work in some long weekend rides as well. Pushing calories down your throat after 7 hours can be just as unpleasant as keeping your power up.


Silly question, but will they email on monday as to whether you got in or not? Should I keep an eye on my credit card account to see if they withdraw money early as an indication? I want to be excited for the race but I know the odds aren’t in my favor in terms of getting in via lottery.

I got two separate emails that I didn’t get in last year, both January 12th which was the day they said they’d notify. Have to guess you’ll get one this year.

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You’ll definitely get an email either way.

I think this statement is underappreciated as it relates to the importance of corral placement. While true, I also think most people get false confidence from ‘you can go sub-9 from any corral’ for the reasons below.

While there will always be variations, the average W/Kg to go sub-9 is about 4 W/kg, I’d say plus or minus about .2 W/kg based on other individual factors. The lower you are on the scale the more perfect the day has to go to break it.

Corral is super important in this in my experience because everyone will hit low points in the day and it is super easy to find yourself completely alone out in seeming no mans land on the return leg past twin lakes. IMO it’s critical for sub-9 bubble riders to find a goldilocks group here that you can work with to make it to Powerline that is keeping the pace but splitting the work. Every corral you are further back than Green reduces the number of other riders in the goldilocks zone and therefore requires you to either have the raw W/kg to keep the pace completely solo, I’d argue this is 4.5 W/kg or above, or just significantly increases your reliance on luck to end up in the right group at the right place and time. Not to mention that you will also definitely be losing some amount of time, I’d estimate up to about 10 minutes, of unavoidable lost time because you will be caught in both more and earlier congestion of walkers on the goat trail than if you were in the front of Green or Red and above.

IMO 4.5+ W/Kg and above people can make their own luck, but for us mere mortals you need to give yourself every marginal advantage you can. Good corral placement both gives you more margin by avoiding some % of bottlenecks and critically in my opinion increases the likelihood that you can find other riders to latch on to, recover, and then build a good group when you inevitably start to feel like garbage past TL inbound.


Well, I think you’ve both got me convinced that I need to race Lutsen, or another one if they announce something better. Both for the practice and experience, but also take my shot at the best corral I can. From a training perspective - would you still make it a B race? A Race?

I am targeting 4.2 - 4.3 as my goal W/Kg (at sea level) but hard to tell when I’m going to start seeing my gains level out. I was new to any real cycling training in February of 2022 and spent 2022 on TR exclusively LV with an extra outdoor ride each week leading up to my goal events.

The advantage is I have a really flexible work schedule, no kids, girlfriend is a marathon runner so I have a pretty ideal preparation schedule. Time will tell!

Hey guys, Ryan Cross here from the Leadville Race Series. Hopefully have a little guidance for you…

  1. Lutsen is a stellar race experience on its own, and will obviously help you boost the corral and test your legs on a long day.

  2. We will not be adding any East coast qualifiers in ‘23.

  3. You can absolutely go sub-9 from the blue corral. I’ve seen it many times. Now that we’ve implemented wave starts and had a couple years to play with the spacing of them, we’ve been able to reduce bottlenecks on the course. That said, the pacing element and group dynamic is helpful out there, so it’s in your best interest to try to find yourself in a group of people who are on your level.

  4. Re: emails/credit cards - all athletes in the lottery will receive an email at 10 AM MT this Monday with the yay/nay. If you’re in, your card will get charged an hour or two after that.

Hope that helps!


+1 on this for so many reasons. And a faster corral is only going to make you faster if you are able to stay with the other folks in that corral (without blowing yourself up). If you aren’t able to ride with that group, you are just starting your clock earlier and you’ll eventually be riding with folks at your level.

@VeloBison - do you know when they are going to post the corral cutoff times for the Nov. 2022 Austin Rattler? I don’t think the course changed, but wondering if cutoffs will be the same as 2021. Trying to figure out where I stand and see if it makes sense to try to further improve my corral. Thanks

It’d be better to keep it a B race but I’d recommend doing some research on what it’d take to qualify for green corral at Lutsen and weigh that in your decision. What type of NP, equipment choice, other pertinent factors.

The ultimate goal is to have as much fitness as possible for LT100 so I’d generally avoid 2 tapers in 8 weeks possible. I’d only consider a full taper for Lutsen if based on your analysis you think can hit the Green qualifying time but it will be razor close.

If you think green is no problem then I definitely would not taper to say try for red corral if your goal is “just” sub-9. Similarly, if you think you can comfortably get in purple but the green cutoff is a stretch then I’d say again keep it B race, get in purple, and keep your focus on building fitness for August.

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We should have that corral chart updated by the end of this week. There won’t be any changes to the Austin Rattler, the course was almost identical from '21 to '22.


Just a heads up, I just got my email. I’ve been selected in my first year applying!


Didn’t get in, again. 5 years of trying now, getting really frustrated.

Thought that travelling half way across the world to do a qualifier would have counted for something but nope. Not like I can really do volunteering either as it would cost me a small fortune. Was really hopeful as chatting to a couple of regulars in Austin I was given the impression that they were making it much more likely to get in as an international entrant.



Sadly, i did not get a lotto spot! Will look into a charity spot…

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No dice in the lottery for me. Really throwing a wrench into my plans.


Sorry to hear man. I didn’t get a lottery slot this year either but I’ve only gotten in that way once out of 6 or 7 attempts so not shocked. I know it adds a lot of expense to an already expensive race but are any of the charity entry partners an option for you? I wish they had some sort of international category in the lottery for people in your situation. Not a guaranteed entry, but if you try for 5+ years straight as an international athlete without practical access to qualifiers I feel like there should be some other option.

For myself, I’m debating whether I want to do charity entry or just roll the dice that I’ll get in at Silver Rush this year. I’m spoiled in that I live in CO so I could feasibly let it ride and shoot for a coin at both Silver Rush and the Stage Race but it’d be crazy to me to not know whether I was going to have a slot or not until 2 weeks before the event.

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Ironically had I not spent the money to go to the qualifier, then the charity option would have been viable. As it is, I just don’t have the cash to do it.

What’s worse is that my bike was destroyed when flying over to Austin, so in real terms I’m down about $6k (still arguing with the airline over liability).

Sorry for the bad news @Textuality . Sorry if I was one of the ones giving false hope at the Rattler. I had always heard international was higher chance, but I think it’s getting tougher every year in the general lottery. I hope you have better luck in the future.

I wonder how many spots got sucked up with the new guaranteed entry for Lifetime fitness members. For folks wanting to race (and maybe on the fence already about joining lifetime), I could see this as strong motivation to sign up as a lifetime member. I can’t fault Lifetime for wanting to provide additional perks for it’s members and driving memberships, but at some point the general lottery is going to have so few spots that it’s not even an option. On one hand, many of the things surrounding the race feel like a money grab, but demand is clearly outstripping supply and Lifetime could probably raise the price quite a bit and still fill it up and say the hell with the charity stuff, etc. I feel like they do a decent job of balancing the business side against the overall experience.