Friday, October 6, 2023
Cary, NC– The Great American XC Festival presented by Garmin gets under way Friday, October 6 at 5pm at WakeMed Soccer Park Course. The meet is the largest in meet history with 3,790 participants- up over 400 athletes from the previous best set in the 2019 edition. Races begin Friday at 5pm with the inaugural middle school division followed by the Cedric Walker HBCU Challenge College races. Saturday, races begin at 8:45 am with the high school JV divisions followed by the Girls Race of Champions beginning at 10:35am. The Boys Race of Champions follows at 11:05am. Live results will be posted here. More information on the event can be found here.
Headlining the races featuring participants from 16 states and the District of Columbia will be several top ranked teams in the DyeStat Southeast Regional Rankings. It will serve as a preview to the Nike Cross Southeast Regional set to be held on Sunday, November 19 on the same course.
In the Girls Race of Champions, Cardinal Gibbons (Raleigh, NC), currently ranked #4 in DyeStat’s SE Regional Rankings, comes in with 5 runners with bests of 18:26 or better- tops of all teams. Tatnall (Wilmington DE) comes in with their top 5 runners at 18:34 or better and a #5 Dyestat SE Regional Ranking. They’ll have to contend with Cuthbertson (Waxhaw, NC) who is ranked #1 in the DyeStat SE Regional Ranking. Other teams with hopes of knocking off these top rated teams are Mount Tabor (Winston-Salem, NC), Charlotte Country Day (Charlotte, NC), and Marietta (GA).
Individually, The Webb School’s (Bell Buckle, TN) Abby Faith Cheeseman is the top seed having run 16:27.6 for 5k cross country this season. The junior won the New Balance Nationals Outdoor two mile in 10:02.08 last track season and has a shot at Katelyn Touhy’s (North Rocklands, Thiells, NY) course and meet record of 16:22.8 set in 2019. Her challengers will be Hannah Rae Shaffer (Cardinal Gibbons, Raleigh, NC), who has run 16:37.73 for the 5,000m on the track, Claire Stegall (Nolensville, TN) who won the Tennessee State 1600m championship in 4:41.40, Zoie Lamanna (Jefferson Forest, Forest, VA) who has a personal best of 10:26.56 for 3200m, Cuthbertson’s (Waxhaw, NC) duo Stella Kernes, a University of Virginia commit who has run 4:42.90 for the mile, and Georgetown commit and 4:41.33 miler, Charlotte Bell.
In the Boys Race of Champions, Belen Jesuit (Miami, FL) travels 841 miles north with hopes of solidifying their standing as the…