Barichievich set for Western States 100 |

Barichievich set for Western States 100

Barichievich will make 4th start in Western States 100

Sierra Sun and Tribune Reports

South Lake Tahoe’s Alan Barichievich will be one of more than 400 ultrarunners representing 16 different countries who will be tested this weekend in the 33rd annual 100-mile Western States Endurance Run.

The run, which follows the Western States Trail originally used by gold and silver miners in the 1850s, starts at the base of Squaw Valley on Saturday at 5 p.m. and ends in Auburn, in the foothills of the Sierra.

“You’re traversing the Sierras,” Barichievich explained. “You can’t get much more difficult than that.”

From Squaw Valley, runners ascend 2,550 feet over 4.5 miles to Emigrant Pass. From there, they continue west, climbing another 15,540 feet and descending another 22,970 before reaching Placer High School in Auburn.

The final cutoff time is 11 a.m. on Sunday, or 30 hours after the start of the race. Last year, 317 of the 360 entrants finished the run. This will be Barichievich’s fourth start. His first start was in 2001, when he didn’t finish, but then successfully completed the race in 2002 and 2003.

“Honestly, the first time I did it in 2001, I didn’t know what I was getting into,” said Barichievich, who wasn’t able to enter the race the past two years. “I didn’t really get into running seriously until my wife and I moved up here (in 1999) from the Bay Area. I would certainly like to break 24 hours. That’s always my goal.”

With temperatures in the Sacramento Valley and foothills expected to top 100 degrees over the weekend, this year’s run should be challenging.

“It’s gonna be a scorcher,” said Auburn resident Tim Twietmeyer, a five-time winner who is entering his final Western States run after 24 previous starts.

Twietmeyer, who also is the president of the Western States Endurance Run Foundation, finished 11th last year in 18 hours, 31 minutes, 30 seconds. With the heat expected for this year’s race, Twietmeyer has no intention of beating that time.

“Not in these conditions,” he said. “You just go out there and try to survive.”

Tahoe City’s Robert Kronkhyte will be competing in his seventh Western States Endurance Run.

“I always enter just with the goal to finish,” Kronkhyte said.

Other Tahoe-area competitors include Truckee resident Kathy D’Onofrio, who has entered the race several times beginning in 1985 and won it in 1986 and 1988, and Soda Springs’ Jack Driver. Seven-time winner Scott Jurek, of Seattle, will not be competing in this year’s race. Jurek won last year’s race in 16:40.46.

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