The men's and women's cross country teams head to Stanford University for the 37th edition of the Stanford Invitational on Saturday morning. For more information click here.
The 8,000-meter men's collegiate race will take place at 10:50 am, while the women's 6,000-meter collegiate race is at 11:30am. High school races begin at 9:00am and will go throughout the day. The men will run the 8,000-meter course, which has a record time of 23:03.1 set by Galen Rupp of Oregon at the 2006 Pac-10 Championships. The Stanford record on the 8K course was set by Neflatem Araia with a time of 23:15.4, also at the 2006 Pac-10 Championships. For the women's 6,000-meter course, Stanford's Arianna Lambie has run the two fastest times. Her time of 19:29.3 at the 2005 NCAA West Regional is easily the record.
Santa Clara had a fine showing last weekend at the UCR Invitational last weekend and is looking forward to the challenge this weekend. Bronco head coach Tom Service (TS) and associate head coach Felipe Montoro (FM) visited with www.SantaClaraBroncos.com to talk about the teams.
SCU: Last weekend the men were seventh out of 25 teams; and the women were 13th of out 24 without running full strength.
FM: I felt like the men executed the race plan really well. Tom, you felt the freshmen ran really well.
TS: With the young team that we are running I felt Riverside was a perfect race. Many of them set personal records for the 5k distance and are gaining confidence daily. Without several of our top runners competing it is a great opportunity for other girls to "step up"
SCU: What would you say about each team now that you have had a couple of days to reflect?
TS: UCR was a really competitive meet. This weekend is also very competitive at Stanford.
FM: My impressions are still that we executed our race plan very well. Hopefully we can replicate our successful approach in an more competitive race this weekend at Stanford.
What kind of racing will you do on back-to-back weekends? Stanford will be very competitive this year.
TS: We generally like to race on alternate weekends, but these meets fit perfectly. Riverside was a fast, flat 5k which is easier to recover from. Stanford will be a more challenging race with stiffer competition and our first 6k of the season. Most of the Stanford runners won't race again until the Bronco Invitational in three weeks.
FM: The host Cardinal is ranked #1 in the country, and this year NAU will be coming out for the race, and they are currently ranked fourth in the country. The Cardinal women are ranked No. 13 nationally. Throw in nationally ranked Arkansas (No. 15) and very competitive squads from CAL, UCLA, Chico State (No. 5 in D2), UCSB, WCC rivals USF and LMU among many others and it will be a solid test for our young runners. We are looking for progress from last week and a successful execution of our race strategy.
Will anyone make a debut this week that hasn't run already?
TS: We are still a few weeks away from being at full strength and will probably go with a similar line-up as Riverside.
FM: On the men's side, everyone running in uniform on Saturday has already competed this year.
Who is running well this week? What are you doing in your training to run two races in a row two weekends in a row with a young team?
FM: Everyone is gradually building fitness and they look pretty good for this point in our season. We try not to race back-to-back weekends, but it just worked out that way with our schedule this year. Most of our guys will take a few weeks off from competition after Stanford until we host the Bronco Invite on October 16th. Our training won't change much this week, we are still preparing for the post season.
TS: Junior Meghan McNamara and sophomore Hayley Ney have been impressive in workouts. The next step is to have those awesome training sessions translate to successful races. We altered the training schedule slightly to accommodate for back-to-back races. The back to back schedule is probably less significant for the women because of the shorter distances. (5k & 6k), whereas the men are running 8k.
As stated previously, we race hard in each invitational, but the early races are simply "window dressing" for WCC and NCAA West Region Championships.