TIPS FOR THE TRAIL - XTERRA NATIONALS - RUNNING FROM THE HEART
By Rachel Cieslewicz
This week I am writing from the high mountains of the Colorado Rockies. Although it is only August, the chill of fall is already in the air at 10,000 feet. Experiencing cooler temperatures and clean mountain air is lending exciting anticipation of late season racing, XTERRA style. In just a few weeks, fall will truly be in full swing at the breathtaking Snowbasin Resort in Northern Utah. There is truly no better place or time of year for XTERRA to host the Trail Run National Championship. I highly recommend you sign up for Nationals, which will take place on September 22. Your perspective of the trail running world will forever be changed when racing XTERRA National Championships! While there are literally dozens of reasons I love XTERRA, there are three I hold closest to my heart. Family. Experience. Human Potential.
There are still a few days remaining to take advantage of the early bird registration fees for the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship.
This year’s race is scheduled for September 22 at the Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah, and early bird fees are good until August 21.
Runners of all ages and skill levels can enter, and there will be three courses to accommodate the various levels – the 21-kilometer course will serve as the national championship course, but there will also by 10K and 5K courses available.
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The event is open to runners from all states, and even runners who have never entered an XTERRA event are eligible to enter. Online registration will remain open until the week of the race, but prices will rise for each race distance after August 21.
XTERRA WATCHES BY ROCKWELL NOW AVAILABLE
EPPERSON, MCLELLAN TAKE TENNESSEE FINALE
Charlie Epperson and Michelle McLellan were the overall winners of the XTERRA Bays Blaze Trail Run last weekend at Bays Mountain Park in Kingsport, Tenn.
Epperson dominated the 15-kilometer course, finishing with a time of 1 hour, 6 minutes – which was seven minutes ahead of the other top runners. Matt Clabagh was second in 1:13, and David Lively was third in 1:14.
McLellan was the top female, finishing with a time of 1:34. Jessica Remmert was second in 1:37.
The race was the third, and final, event of the 2013 XTERRA Tennessee Trail Run Series. More details and a list of Tennessee Series champions will be provided next week.
MITCHELL RETURNS TO XTERRA WITH WIN AT HAGG LAKE
The last time Greg Mitchell entered an XTERRA Trail Run event, the year was 2010, and he placed second to the legendary Max King at the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship.
Three years later, Mitchell proved that he is still an elite runner with a convincing victory at the XTERRA Hagg Lake Trail Run last weekend at Gaston, Oregon. He completed the 21-kilometer course in 1 hour, 26 minutes, 29 seconds – which was more than six minutes faster than the other top runners.
“I¹ve run around Hagg Lake quite a few times over the years, but I¹d never raced it until Sunday,” said Mitchell, who resides in McMinnville, Oregon. “Turns out, it¹s a lot tougher on race day then I remember it being on any training run! On the best of days it¹s pretty technical with lots of tight turns, exposed roots, steep climbs and quick descents. It was pretty rutty too from the mountain bikes and the lack of rain over the past couple of months made it pretty unforgiving. I was almost as happy that I didn¹t fall as I was with the win!”
Mitchell said he took the lead in the first mile and kept pushing the pace, never realizing how far ahead he was until the finish. Fellow elite runner Derek Scott from Portland placed second in 1:32:52.
“I didn¹t realize it was Derek Scott behind me or I probably would have been more disconcerted than I already was,” Mitchell said. “By the time I got to the finish I knew I had a sizeable lead, but was surprised it ended up being a 6 minute gap.”
Mitchell, who will turn 40 this year, said his running focus has been on road marathons, as he is hoping for a good showing at the U.S. Masters Championship Marathon in October.
Beth Walsh from Cardiff, California, was an impressive fourth place overall and the first overall female with a time of 1:43:29. Marianne Falk from Portland was second in 1:44:38.
SOUTH CAROLINA SERIES FINALE THIS WEEKEND
The XTERRA Table Rock Trail Run is already considered the toughest course in the XTERRA South Carolina Trail Run Series, and some recent rain could make it even more interesting this weekend. The race is scheduled for this Saturday, August 17, and more than 200 runners are expected to take the challenge at Table Rock State Park in Pickens, S.C.
The event will feature two courses – a grueling 15-kilometer long course that will offer more than 2,000 feet of climbing, and a 5K short course.
It will also be the third, and final, event of the 2013 XTERRA South Carolina Trail Run Series. It will be the last chance for runners to earn points toward the overall standings for the series.
To learn more about the race or the South Carolina Series, please visit www.marathonmajic.com.
RECORD FIELD EXPECTED AT PUERTO RICO THIS WEEKEND
A record field of around 600 runners is expected to compete at the XTERRA Cerro Gordo Trail Run this weekend at Cerro Gordo, Puerto Rico. It will be the fourth, and final, event of the 2013 XTERRA Puerto Rico Trail Run Series.
The event will feature two courses – a 10K and a 5K – and more than 500 runners from across the island of Puerto Rico have already registered for the race. The record for a Puerto Rico trail run event is 350 runners.
More than 100 runners showed up just for a practice run at Cerro Gordo last weekend.
To learn more about the race or the Puerto Rico Series, please visit www.xterrapr.com.
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