Sarah Lavender Smith January 08, 2014 TWEET COMMENTS 0

Old School

Lake Sonoma 50 miler combines a great course, top talent and laid-back vibe

Photo by Matt Trappe

"Relentless” is how Race Director John Medinger describes the undulating singletrack of his Lake Sonoma 50, which has become one of the most sought-after 50-milers on the ultra calendar.

“A track meet” is what the hyperbolic Karl “Speedgoat” Meltzer calls it, given the frontrunners’ speed and the trail’s “buff-smooth” footing.

“A world-class event that is a true blend of Old School and New School,” is how another dean in the sport, Andy Jones-Wilkins, refers to the event’s laid-back atmosphere and high-octane field.

All three aptly describe and help explain the appeal of the Lake Sonoma 50, which Medinger began in 2008 near his hometown of Healdsburg, about an hour and a half north of San Francisco. Add to those factors the springtime setting of California’s wine country, and the result is a race that filled within eight hours last year. The 300 spots might go even faster when registration opens December 15 for the April 12, 2014, edition.


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