Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Husky Classic & USA Cross Country Championships headline distance running weekend in Washington state...

If you love middle and long distance running, the state of Washington is the place to be this weekend, as many of the country's top runners converge upon Seattle for the two-day Husky Classic at the Dempsey Indoor on the campus of the University of Washington, and in Spokane's Plantes Ferry Sports Stadium for the USA Cross Country Championships.

The Husky Classic is packed full of stars, including World Championship medalist Shannon Rowbury (left/photo by Paul Merca) who is entered in the 800; Olympic Trials finalist Jordan Hasay (w 3000); world championship team member Bridget Franek (w 5000); and Canadian Olympian Ruky Abdulai (w LJ & 60 H), not to mention the plethora of NCAA championships qualifiers and All-Americans.

On the men's side, US Olympic team 800 meter runners Nick Symmonds (DMR) and Andrew Wheating (800) are among the headliners, along with indoor sprint find Ryan Bailey (60 & 200), Washington State's Bowerman Award candidate Jeshua Anderson (400), former world championship team members Duane Solomon & Ryan Brown in the 800; and, former prep sensation German Fernandez (mile/3000).

Incidentally, the field events are outstanding, headlined by Dempsey Indoor favorites Scott Roth (PV), and Norris Frederick (LJ/HJ), and a pair of Olympians in Canadian Mike Mason and American Jesse Williams in the men's high jump.

On the other side of the state, Dathan Ritzenhein looks to take his third career USA Cross Country title on Saturday, while 2008 Olympic 10000 bronze medalist Shalane Flanagan aims for national title number four.

Both the Husky Classic and the USA Cross Country Championships will be webcast live on flotrack.org.

The start list for the Husky Classic can be viewed here
. The entries for the USA Cross Country Championships can be navigated here.

paulmerca.blogspot.com will be in Spokane for coverage of the USA Cross Country Championships beginning Thursday evening.

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