A Cross Country Invitational at CNU

Schools around the region dash at CNU


Last Friday (September the 16th to be exact) the CNU Cross Country held a thrilling Invitational at the nearby Lee Hall Mansion. An enormous dedicated crowd of people went to watch the race unfold, including audiences for the other teams like William and Mary, VCU and even smaller campuses like Marymount. The Course itself was extremely level, which allowed for the runners to accelerate and maintain speed without needing to fluctuate too much. 


The first race, for the women’s team, started just as the sun was descending over the tree line, perpendicular to the start line. Truly a delight for all of the people about to run, since they didn’t have to worry about the sun getting in their eyes as much, but not as much for the people watching who had to try to take pictures by facing directly into the sun. The racers took off strong, most of them attempting to stay with their own team in order to win the most points, until eventually falling back or speeding up. All in all, our captains, female captains did an excellent job maintaining a consistent speed throughout the meet, with our racers hitting around 18-25 minutes. Keep in mind this is for a 6k (or a little under 4 miles), which means that these runners were running kilometers in around 3 minutes. 


The men’s race was also excellent (especially now that I didn’t have to stare into the sun to take pictures. It seems that our captains attempted to slowly pick up the pace over their run, to contrast what Coach Wingard said in an interview with me in last week’s paper.  The strategy paid off as our runners finished with terrific times that were roughly the same as the women’s despite having to run two kilometers more (an 8k).


The runners weren’t the only thing worth commenting on in this invitational. While watching the two races. I was honored to see dozens of people, from all of the teams, who were willing to go drive out for several miles to watch their friends and family run.  The best place to see just how much energy was coming from the crowd was right at the finish line. Families and friends alike cheered on their teams with everything they had. It was clearly working too, because several runners not only picked up speed, but were also able to pass the people who were ahead of them. It was the kind of energy that made me glad I was there to witness the race.