The 2020 Application Process!
|The 2020 Dipsea Application Process is expected to begin in mid-March 2020. Please check back closer to that date for more up-to-date information, or follow us on Facebook.
The instructions below are for the 2019 Dipsea, but stay tuned for the 2020 updates as we finalize the details.
The 2019 Annual Dipsea Race will be Sunday, June 9th, 2019 starting at 8:30am, Downtown Mill Valley.
The Dipsea Race is one of the more challenging athletic events in the Bay Area. Because of the potential environmental impact that would result from uncontrolled use and the risk of injury from crowding on the steep and narrow trails, the number of runners has for several years been restricted to no more than 1,500. That's less than half the number of people who apply every year. So, an elaborate system has been developed to fairly apportion the scarce racing slots.
The surest way to get a racing number is to do well in the previous Dipsea. The first four hundred and fifty Invitational runners who finished in 2018 are automatically eligible for the Invitational section of the 2019 race. All they need do is get their application completed and mailed in before the deadline of April 1, 2019. Also eligible for the 2019 Invitational are those from the Runner section who were among the first 750, overall, to cross the finish line in 2018. Note: if there is a * next to your name on last year's results, it means you automatically qualified for Invitational. For everyone else, it's a little trickier, partly because the system still is subject to the U.S. Postal Service and the fact that the Race receives twice as many applications as the number of available entries.
Once the pre-qualified runners are assigned their numbers, the remaining 900 slots are apportioned according to the following system:
Five hundred racing numbers are allocated on a basis of first come, first accepted. For the last several years, the official applications are available for downloading only on our website. That evens the playing field because everyone has access at the same time. But the completed applications can be sent back to us ONLY through the mail. That tends to favor the local Bay Area residents. And that's fine with the race committee, because the Dipsea is essentially a local event, even though racers come from other states and other countries.
In previous years, the fastest way to get your application to us was to hand-deliver it to the Mill Valley Post Office. The officials there tell us they won't accept and hand cancel letters directly for our post office box in Mill Valley. We understand that Dipsea applications posted at the Mill Valley post office will go to a regional facility for sorting and then will be delivered to the Mill Valley Post Office. So it might be fastest to mail the application from a regional center near you.
Please note: You may send the application by USPS Overnight Mail. However, neither FedEx nor UPS delivers to our P.O. Box.
- For those who are really desperate to run in The Dipsea, there's always money. After the first 500 applicants have been assigned, another hundred entries are accepted based on a silent auction. One hundred race numbers are awarded to applicants who send checks in excess of the $90 entry fee, $60 for children under 16, (the "bribe" money, anything over the $90 for adults and $60 for youngsters under 16 goes to the Dipsea Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that awards scholarships and maintains the trail). The auction bidding goes higher every year.
- The final 300 places in the 2019 Dipsea race will be filled by lottery. After the three above scenarios are completed, all remaining applications received in our office by April 1, 2019 are eligible. No special application is required. The drawing will be conducted randomly. We cannot predict the chances of success. The odds will be based on the total number of applications received.
There are actually two more ways to get into the race. One is to send a convincing sob story that will persuade the race committee to make room for the applicant. They're reasonable, but they've heard just about everything, although serving previously as a volunteer in the race may help, but not necessarily. Finally, on the Friday before the race, there's the Annual Dipsea Race Foundation banquet where one Invitational race number is auctioned to the highest bidder, starting at a bid of $500.
As last year, 2019 applications will not be mailed via US Postal Service. In our endeavor to contain race operating costs and entry fees, the Dipsea Race will no longer print and mail applications to previous year’s participants and new applicants. The application will reside on www.Dipsea.org for you to download only.
Participants, Invitationals and Runners in the 2018 Dipsea Race and prior years, who provided a valid email address on their application and have their log on information may access their application/runner profile now until March 30, 2019. During this period you may verify your application/information and make any applicable updates (Birthdate and age cannot be edited by you). Simply go to application.Dipsea.org and log on, click on Runner Profile to make edits. You will not be able to print out your application prior to March 13, 2019. (Please check our website in early March for the application downloading time).
Once you have downloaded and printed your application, sign it, attach an entry fee check, and mail it to: Dipsea Race, P.O. Box 30, Mill Valley, CA 94942. Any donation amount may be added to the fee check.
2018 race participants who did not submit a valid email address on the 2018 application, and new applicants may also download an application from our web site www.dipsea.org on March 14, 2019 at noon, but the application will not contain any of your information. (The exact time may vary – please check our web site in early March). We will not email applications to you.
Please note: Acceptance into the race is based on criteria as set forth on page 1 of “The 2019 Application Process”.
Registration is not complete until your application and entry fee have been received by the Dipsea Office by April 1, 2019. Applications received after April 1 will be returned.
All 2018 race participants who had provided a valid an email address file will receive an email in early February 2019 with detailed instructions to access the 2019 application. 2018 participants without a valid email address on the 2018 application must download an application from our website www.Dipsea.org on or after March 14, 2019.
Applicants who are not successful in getting into the 2019 race will be mailed a refund check less a $10.00 processing fee on April 15, 2019. The fee is intended to cover some of the costs of processing the application and postage and does not subsidize the race. We impose the fee by cashing your entry check and returning the refunds by separate check with your notice. REMEMBER: Cancellation of your check DOES NOT mean you have been accepted in the Race.
As stated above, 2018 Dipsea Race participants who have a valid email address on file will receive an email in February 2019 with detailed instructions about how to access your 2019 application. At this time you may update your information online if you have your login information.
Any questions or comments not related to Invitational applications can be asked via our Contact page.