Utah has been the gathering place for XTERRA Trail Run participants from around the country every September since 2011. It only makes sense that the Beehive State would have an XTERRA Series of its own.
The XTERRA Utah Trail Run Series will make its debut in 2013, with at least three races on the schedule.
“The popularity of trail racing in Utah is increasing,” Utah Series director Mac McCluskey said. “I see the number increasing on the trails during my own training runs and participation in local events has been increasing.”
Utah is renowned for its breathtaking trails, and the races in the series are no exception. The first race will take runners to the picturesque Jordanelle State Park, which offers rolling terrain and scenic views – all at elevations above 6,000 feet.
The second race features a short, but memorable, course at Moab, Utah. The 5K trail is mostly single track, and takes runners to Faux Falls and along Ken’s Lake.
The third race will take place at Wolf Mountain ski resort in Ogden, so the climbs – and views – are sure to be epic.
Each race in the series is open to runners of all ages and skill levels, from Utah and other states. All three races are scheduled for the summer months of June and July, when the weather is expected to be warm and dry. “Mountain temperatures in the high 70s to low 80s; I consider it to be perfect for running,” is how McCluskey described it.
The XTERRA Utah Trail Run Series should serve as a perfect warm-up for the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship, which is held every September at the Snowbasin Resort near Ogden, Utah.
“If anyone were training for Nationals, this would be the place to do it,” McCluskey said. “With the elevation change and hilly terrain that these events offer, it is a positive comparison to the course at Nationals. They could not be any more similar without actually being Snowbasin, and should provide excellent training opportunities for anyone considering that race in September.”
Points will be awarded to the top runners in each age group at every race in the Utah Series, and standings will be updated throughout the season. At the conclusion of the series, each age-group champion will receive a free entry to represent Utah at the XTERRA Trail Run National Championship.