August 5, 2006
2006 Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team – JUNIOR TEAM ANNOUNCED
The 2006 Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team will travel to Bursa, Turkey to compete
in the 22nd World Mountain Running Trophy Race in September which is sanctioned
by the World Mountain Running Association (WMRA) and patronized by the
International Association of Amateur Athletics Federations (IAAF). The junior
squad, (eligible to athletes who are at least 16 years of age in the year of
competition and not yet 20) will compete on Saturday, September 10. The junior
men (three scoring/four maximum) race an 8.5km uphill course with a total 895m
ascent and 30m descent (same course as senior women). The junior women (two
scoring/three maximum) race 3.4km with 395m of elevation gain.
This is the fifth year the U.S. will field a junior men's team to Worlds. The U.S. will not field a junior women's team this year at Worlds. "We did not receive much interest from junior women this year and will concentrate more efforts in recruitment of 2007 team members," said Nancy Hobbs, team manager.
The juniors were selected based on their running resume which included mountain, trail, cross country, road, and track performances. All applicants were required to also provide a letter of recommendation from their coach, and be a current member of USA Track & Field.
Chosen to represent the United States on the junior men's team are Jonny Stevens, 17, Vail, CO, Rory Egelus, 19, Palmer, AK, and Zach Rivers, 16, Rochester, NY. Dave Dunham, Bradford, MA is the manager of the junior team. Dunham competed for the U.S. at seven World Mountain Running Trophy events finishing on the podium in 1993 as a silver medalist and as the top U.S. finisher six times. He was previously a manager of the men's team which made him the ideal choice to lead the juniors. He is a race director for both mountain and snowshoe races and was the organizer of the USATF New England Mountain Running Circuit for seven years (1996-2002).
Team members in alphabetic order:
Now a four-time team member, Rory Egelus is a 2005 graduate of Palmer High School in Palmer, Alaska and will enter his sophomore year a the University of Nevada, Reno this fall majoring in Engineering. Egelus finished second for the U.S. juniors in Wellington, New Zealand last September. He holds a personal record of 26:35 for the grueling 1,634-foot vertical climb and descent on the famous junior Mt. Marathon course in Seward AK. He is the impressive Mt. Marathon three-time junior champion (2002, 2003, 2004) and was 18th in the open race this past July. His 5km personal record is 16:02, his 1600m best is 4:42. Egelus's hobbies include guitar, building bent willow furniture, and of course, running mountains.
Jonny Stevens enters his junior year at Battle Mountain High School in Vail,
CO this fall. He has received varsity letters in cross country, ice hockey and
track at BMHS and qualified for the Colorado High School State Championships in
all three sports. He holds records at his high school in cross country at 5Km,
track in the 1600M and 3200M. He won the Colorado Western Slope League "All
Conference" Award in track in 2006 and received an honorable mention on the
Denver Post All Colorado Cross Country Team 2005-06. He was the team captain for
his cross country team and received the most inspirational award for the 2005-06
cross country season at his high school. Says Stevens' coach Robert Parish, "I
have had the privilege of knowing Jonny for the last three years. Over this
short time, I have witnessed Jonny grow from the lanky and un-tested
14-year-old, to the strong athlete he is today, just starting to scratch the
surface of his enormous potential."
Newcomer Zach Rivers traveled to Italy as a member of the U.S. Junior National Snowshoe Team in January 2006 where he finished fifth overall for the U.S. scoring for the open team helping them to win the national title. In 2005, the Victor High School Sophomore competed in cross country and track and won the Section V Cross Country Sectional Championships running 16:28, placed fourth in the NY State Class A Championships, and set a course record of 16:07 at the League Championships. He finished in second place at the Muddy Sneaker 12.8 mile race which had over 2000' of climbing setting an age group record in the process. Rivers was named the 2004 and 2005 Wayne-Finger Lakes Outstanding Cross Country Athlete. Victor Cross Country Coach Belinda O'Brien says, "From results alone you can see that the terrain of Bursa will not intimidate Zach. His warm, friendly, caring personality – along with his strong team ethics – compliment his athletic ability." Rivers will enter his junior year at Victor High School this fall.
New last year were running blogs set up at www.youthrunner.com by Youth Runner magazine. The juniors participated in the blogging after they were named to the team and provided updates before, during, and after their trip to New Zealand. This year we will again work with Youth Runner and our juniors to make this program a successful one, and hopefully get more juniors interested in the U.S. mountain running program.
For more information on the 22nd World Mountain Running Trophy visit: www.wmrt2006.org and for more information about the Teva U.S. Mountain Running Team visit: www.trailrunner.com . For additional information on the U.S. Mountain Running program visit the websites listed below:
Youth Runner Blogs www.youthrunner.com
USA Mountain Running Championships www.gsrs.com
Loon Mountain Race www.whitemountainmilers.com
World Mountain Running Association www.wmra.info
USA Track & Field www.usatf.org
Teva – Team Sponsor www.teva.com
SportHill Clothing – Team Sponsor www.sporthill.com
180s performance gear – Team Sponsor www.180s.com
FuelBelt, Inc. – Team Sponsor www.fuelbelt.com
Team Manager Nancy Hobbs
PO Box 9454 Colorado Springs, CO 80932
(719) 573-4133 Fax (719) 573-4408
Junior Team Manager
108 Ferry Road
Bradford, MA 01835
(978) 691-6727 (6 am -2pm EST)