HAWAIIAN AIRLINES AWARDS TWO TRIPS TO CALIFORNIA RUNNERS
Kia Flores of the XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series and Matthew Hall of the XTERRA NorCal Trail Run Series each won a roundtrip ticket to Hawaii through a random drawing sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines.
Flores, who started competing in XTERRA trail runs this year, did a double-take when she received the e-mail announcing her prize. “I thought it was some type of gimmick, so I sent an e-mail to confirm,” she said.
Any runner who participated in either the XTERRA SoCal or XTERRA NorCal series was eligible for the drawing.
Series director Brennan Lindner said he chose the names through a random draw and announced it in an e-mail to all the runners.
“The XTERRA California Series is very appreciative of Hawaiian Airlines support of the XTERRA Lifestyle with the XTERRA Trail Runs,” Lindner said. “With over 4,000 athletes competing in the series this year, it was a prize that was continuously talked about amongst the athletes.”
RUNNER'S SPOTLIGHT: JAXON RICKEL
Thanks in part to a background in orienteering, Jaxon Rickel navigated his way to the top of his age group in the XTERRA SoCal Trail Run Series in 2010.
Rickel, 16, had an impressive first year in the SoCal Series, placing in the top 10 overall in the three races he entered. His most impressive performance came at the XTERRA Boney Mountain Xduro Trail Run at Thousand Oaks, Calif., in January. He placed third overall among a field of around 300, beating several elite-level runners.
Rickel started trail running just three years ago as an alternative to orienteering -- a sport that requires navigating from point to point on an unknown course with the use of a map and compass.
“He was really good at orienteering, so I said why don’t you just run the trails already,” his father John explained. “He did really well at his first (trail run) and been doing it ever since.”
Jaxon entered just three races in the SoCal Series in 2010, but he had good reason for missing the others. For one, he’s still in high school, a junior at St. Gregory’s College Prep. Second, he lives in, and attends school, in Tucson, Ariz.
Getting to the SoCal races required an eight-hour drive with his family.
“It was worth it,” Jaxon said. “Those races are so big, there are more people to run with. A lot of other places have smaller races and there’s not as much competition.”
Now, Jaxon is looking for more competition. He recently joined the cross country team at St. Gregory’s. Oddly enough, he never ran cross country prior to this year.
“Yeah, it’s weird how it worked out,” he said. “I did the trail running first and now I’m going to try cross country.”
He will also compete at the XTERRA Trail Running National Championship at Bend, Ore., on Sept. 18. It will be his first time running at Bend.
“I’m excited to see what it’s like; what the competition is like,” he said.
Regardless of how he does in Bend, he said he will continue trail running in 2011, and will get to do it closer to home. The XTERRA Arizona Trail Run Series will make its debut in October, and Jaxon said he plans to enter.
“It’ll be like a two-hour drive, so that will be easier than the eight hours we were driving to (SoCal),” he said.
WILLIE NELSON CONCERT IN BEND
Country music legend Willie Nelson is scheduled to play a concert in Bend, Ore., on Sept. 17, which is the night before the XTERRA Trail Running National Championship.
The concert is set to take place at the Les Schwab Amphitheater, which is in the Old Mill District of Bend. The XTERRA race headquarters will also be in the Old Mill District.
Tickets range from $46 to $79 and are available through www.ticketmaster.com.
EARLY BIRD DEADLINE APPROACHING
Don’t forget, the early bird saves $5.
If you are not yet registered to compete in the 2010 XTERRA Trail Running National Championship, you have until Aug. 18 to receive the Early Bird discount.
Runners who register by Aug. 18 will pay $40 for the 21-kilometer course ($30 for the 10K, and $25 for the 5K). After Aug. 18, the fees increase by $5.
The XTERRA Trail Running National Championship is scheduled for Sept. 18 at Bend, Ore.
To register online and for more information, visit http://www.xterraplanet.com/xduro/nationals.html.
On the last day of his summer internship in New Hampshire, Mike Torchia ran out and won the XTERRA STOAKED Trail Run on Saturday.
Torchia completed the 16-kilometer course in 49 minutes, 7.8 seconds, to finish well ahead of the rest of the field. Runner-up John Dudley came in more than five minutes later at 54:27.6.
“We had some fast runners there and Mike still ran away from everybody else, so that shows you fast he is,” race director Chad Denning said. “I think he can compete on a national-level.”
Actually, Torchia does compete on a national level as a member of the University of Minnesota’s cross country and track teams. He will be a senior this season, and was working as an intern in New Hampshire for the past few months. He was scheduled to return to Minnesota on Saturday, but decided to compete in the XTERRA race first.
“The course was dry, well cleared, but most importantly, well marked,” Torchia said. “The race was held under blue skies, non-humid air, and temperatures in the mid-70s. You really couldn't ask for a better day than that.”
Shortly after winning the race, Torchia made a 26-hour drive to to the University of Minnesota campus.
“Luckily no major debilitating cramps came up during the ensuing car ride,” he said.
It was Torchia’s first experience in an XTERRA race, but he said he would like to enter more in the future.
“The entire experience was excellent,” Torchia said. “I'd like to give a huge shout-out to Chad Denning, the race director, who put on one of the more quality events that I've ever experienced. I think the most memorable aspect of the experience was the festival-like atmosphere of the entire day.”
Sara Graves, a resident of Croydon, N.H., was the first female to finish with a time of 1:02:59. She also finished well ahead of her competition. Andrea Banks was second in 1:08:25.
Around 100 runners participated in the race, which was held in conjunction with the XTERRA STOAKED Triathlon.
Complete results can be found at www.xterratrailrun.com.
The XTERRA South Carolina Trail Run Series will hold its final race of the 2010 season -- the XTERRA Paris Mountain 7K Trail Run at Greenville, S.C., on Aug. 14.
It will the fourth, and final, race in the 2010 South Carolina Series, and more than 200 runners are expected to participate. Three of the previous South Carolina races were also staged at Paris Mountain, although on different trails.
As the final race of the season, it will serve as the last chance for runners to earn points toward an age-group regional championship. Each age-group champion from South Carolina will receive free entry fee to the XTERRA Trail Running National Championship on Sept. 18 at Bend, Ore.
Entries for the XTERRA Paris Mountain 7K Trail Run are still being accepted at www.greenvilletrailruns.com.
CONTACT THE XTERRA TRAIL RUN SERIES
Toll-free: 877-XTERRA-1 (877-983-7721)
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