Get Ready for NE’s!

The end is near for the 2013 USATF-NE XC Grand Prix. The series culminates in the New England Championships this Sunday. After a one year hiatus due to construction the action returns to Franklin Park in Boston. Here is the schedule of the day’s action:

SCHEDULE
10:00 a.m. Men’s Masters 8K
10:50 a.m. Women’s Open and Masters 6K
11:30 p.m. Men’s Open 10K

During the hiatus, the event was held at Stanley Park in Westfield, MA. The BAA men, led by Brian Harvey’s second place finish, captured that title. In the women’s race it was the ladies of the Central Park Track Club that took home the honors. They bested the women of the New Balance Boston club by a slim margin of 39 to 50. For series scoring purposes, the NBB squad were champs so it wasn’t all for naught.

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Rumor has it that the CPTC harriers will be back for their second race at Franklin Park in a two week span. What about last year’s individual champs (Mary Kate Champagne and Ruben Sanca)? Ruben Sança won it wearing GBTC red in 2012 but he’s now sporting Whirlaway red. Will he compete? Is the different shade of red as lucky for him?

Also on the line are the titles and bragging rights that accompany winning the whole series. Here’s a quick look at where things stand:

The WMDP and GBTC women are tied atop the open leaderboard with 45 points apiece. It all comes down to this last race, one for all the marbles. Millennium has made an impressive late surge (beating both top teams in the last two contests) but missing the first two races completely put them into a hole that is pretty much impossible to climb out of. As far as individuals go, it’s ridiculously close between Aly Millet (GBTC, 212 pts), Caroline Bjune (BAA, 198 pts) and Sydney Fitzpatrick (NBB, 195 pts).

The GBTC men have a pretty commanding lead in the open standings, as does Sean Duncan of WMDP. Ryan Irwin (GBTC) has a chance, but it might take a no-show from Duncan to leap frog him in the standings.

Besides bragging rights, there is also some cold hard cash on the line. From the USATF-NE website:

Individual Open Prize Money
OPEN: 1st - $100 2nd - $75 3rd - $50

Champions (US citizen) are eligible for a travel award to USA Nationals
Top eligible Open NE runners may be eligible for a trip to Ireland’s Ras na hEireann

AGE 40+: $100 /$ 50 50+: $75 60+: $25 70+: $25

TEAM PRIZE MONEY (NE Clubs)
Open Team: 1st place $300 2nd place- $200; 3rd place - $150; 4th place - $100
40-and-over Team: 1st - $ 200 2nd - $150 3rd - $100
50-and-over Team: 1st - $ 150 2nd - $75
60-and-over Team, 70-and-over Team: 1st - $ 25

You can get the full details here.

So come out to a classic New England course to compete, cheer on your friends, or to just find out who wins firsthand. You might also get to see what this year’s question might be…

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