INDIANAPOLIS – Olympic Bronze medalist and American record holder Shalane Flanagan (Portland, Ore.) is once again set to lead the Team USA women at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships as they seek to improve on their bronze medal finish in 2010.
As Team USA heads to Punta Umbria, Spain for the championships to be held on March 20, Flanagan and 2010 teammates American Record holder at 5,000 meters Molly Huddle (Providence, R.I.); and 2008 Olympic marathoner Magdalena Lewy Boulet (Oakland, Calif.); will join forces with Blake Russell (Pacific Grove, Calif.), a member of the U.S. team that won a bronze medal in the women’s short course in 2005; Lisa Koll (Portland, Ore.), the NCAA 10,000 meter record holder; and Alissa McKaig (Blowing Rock, N.C.), who finished fifth at the USA Women’s Marathon Championship in her debut at the distance last fall.
The senior men’s team will be led by Brent Vaughn (Blackhawk, Colo.), who surprised the men’s field to win his first USA title at the 2011 USA Cross Country Championships in San Diego.
Joining Vaughn in Spain will be Andrew Bumbalough (Portland, Ore.), a member of the U.S. junior team in 2006; Andrew Carlson (Minneapolis, Minn.), the 2008 USA Men’s 15 km champion; Ben True (Hanover, N.H.), an NCAA All-American in Cross Country at Dartmouth; Brian Olinger (Westerville, Ohio), an NCAA All-American in Track and Cross Country at The Ohio State University; and Max King (Bend, Ore.), the 2010 NACAC Cross Country champion who will be competing on his fourth U.S. Cross Country squad.
Cuffe leads junior women
The junior women’s team will be led by high school senior Aisling Cuffe (Cornwall On Hudson, N.Y.), who won the junior women's 6 km championship in San Diego.Joining Cuffe will be Molly Grabill (Poway, Calif.); University of Washington freshman Katie Flood (Des Moines, Iowa); Sierra Vega (Santa Ana, Calif.); Julie Nacouzi (Santa Rosa, Calif.); and Hannah Valenzuela (Apple Valley, Calif.).
Olson leads junior men
The men’s junior team will see Stanford University freshman Erik Olson (Novato, Calif.), the 2011 Junior Men’s 8 km champion, along with Syracuse University freshman Maxwell Straneva (Binghamton, N.Y.); Craig Lutz (Highland Village, Texas); Justin Vilhauer (Visalia, Calif.); Ryan Poland of (Westminster, Colo.); and 2010 junior squad member Ammar Moussa (Arcadia, Calif.).
For more information on the 2011 World Cross Country Championships visit www.usatf.org.