PARK CITY, UT (Oct. 15) - Cross country athletes from across the map will descend on northern Maine following what promises to be an exciting Olympic season to hunt for one more season title at the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association's (USSA) U.S. Cross Country Championships long distance event. The event will take place in Fort Kent, ME, to wrap up 2010 with a U.S. Championship long distance race and the USSA SuperTour finals.
Fort Kent has a world class venue carved on top of a mountain looking over this quaint border town in the Saint John Valley of northern Maine. The Championship event will be a women's 30K and men's 50K race, held March 24, and will be followed with the USSA SuperTour competitions March 26-28.
"We are thrilled to announce that our U.S. Championships long distance competitions will be included as part of the USSA SuperTour finals," USSA Nordic Program Director John Farra said. "The long distance race is one of the toughest tests of skiing fitness out there and is expected to be contested by all of the best U.S. skiers returning from World Cup Finals."
The long distance event includes cash prizes for the top three athletes in each gender.
The USSA SuperTour Finals is a new event and follows a unique format that mimics what is being contested in some World Cup competitions. Three days of racing includes one individual sprint, one mass start distance race and ends with a hill climb. The races will be complete with a leader's jersey, cash prizes each day, and a large purse upon the completion of the three-day event.
According to Farra, Fort Kent will be a perfect addition to national cross country competition stops.
"Fort Kent has an excellent venue and offers an experienced organizing committee who has hosted the classic version of this event in 2006, as well as holding a World Cup biathlon event in 2004," Farra said. "The trails are modern, technical, and will provide a great test to determine our U.S. marathon champions. There is a long tradition of skiing in Fort Kent, with experienced officials and volunteers excited to welcome the best in the U.S."
U.S. Cross Country Championship sprint and middle distance events will be held in January in Anchorage, AK.
2010 U.S. Cross Country Championships and Super Tour Finals Schedule:
March 24, 2010 Fort Kent, ME
Mar. 26-28 Fort Kent and Madawaska, ME
USSA SuperTour Finals
5/10k C, Sprint C, 5/6km F Hill Climb