WOW! What a great opener to the 2018 XC season! This morning, the EPXC team ran in their first competition of the year, the Cheyenne Mountain Stampede in Colorado Springs. Both coaches were expecting to see improvement, but teams performed WAY better than even we had expected. The EPXC girls team finished 5th out of 14 teams and the EPXC boys team finished 6th out of 19 teams; it’s worth noting that all of the teams in this particular race are potential state meet qualifiers. A couple of other stats to put EPXC races in perspective.

1.) We totaled the times of the top 6 runners in the CMS 2017 edition and compared them to our top 6 runners today; the boys team improved by 3:54, and the girls improved by 13:46!

2.) Every runner who ran in this race last year, ran faster this year and the 4 returning boys dropped 5:42 from their times, and the 4 returning girls dropped 11:14 from their times!

This race showed us that all of the summer training has indeed paid off, but it also presented us with some challenges; to catch up to and surpass the teams in our league that finished ahead of us today. We'd like to mention in particular the individual performances of Ian (19:19) and Hayden (20:22), both of whom beat their all-time PRs (personal records) for the 5k today!

We'd also like to thank the EPXC families that helped to support the team this week. Thank you to Mary Zurfluh and Tonya Russell for the great locker decorations, thank you to Mary Zurfluh for hosting team dinner on Thursday, and thank you to the Russells for filling the snack box this week.

 Chase Murray:

As we're sure all of you have heard by now, one of the EPXC family, Chase Murray, has been diagnosed with and has begun treatment for Leukemia. This was very hard news for all of us on the team to receive last week, but the response from the team and the community has already been amazing. For those interested in following Chase’s progress and helping out, there is now a Caring Bridge and Facebook page with more information. We will keep you up-to-date on fundraising opportunities as they arise.

Right now, the EPXC team is planning to help with wristband sales, a head-shaving event, and the “Race for Chase” charity 5k. If you would like to get involved or have any ideas for other fundraisers, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Upcoming Events this Week:

As always, we have a lot going on in the EPXC world this week. Please mark your calendars.

Monday 8/27

-Trail Run Practice: 3:30-6:00PM at Lily Lake Trail. We will be taking 2 mini-busses to trail runs every Monday for the remainder of the season.

-Head Shaving Event for Chase: 6pm in the High School commons. Join the EPXC team and the community in supporting Chase through his fight with Leukemia by shaving our heads in solidarity with him. We will also be accepting donations and selling orange  “Chase Murray - Send It” wristbands for $2 as a fundraiser for the Murray family. **Head shaving is not a requirement to attend this event**.  AND, Please do not attend if you are sick! Chase’s immune system is compromised and this could be life-threatening for him.

Tuesday 8/28

-Normal Practice: 3:30PM to 6:00PM.

Wednesday 8/29

-Pre-Meet Practice: 6:30AM, meeting at the track shed.

-EPXC Team Dinner: After school will be hosted by the Harroffs.

-Secret Psycher: This is an EPXC tradition that has been around since before both coaches took over the program. To explain it basically, each runner has been assigned a teammate for the season; they are that person’s “secret psycher”. It is their responsibility to anonymously give their person a small gift (Gatorade, cliff bar, etc.) and a note of encouragement before each meet. This tradition has the potential to be very encouraging and uplifting for our athletes, but everyone needs to participate for it to work that way. Parents, please help your runners prepare and remember to bring their gift each week.

Thursday 8/30

-Washington Park Invite, hosted in by Denver South. We will be departing for this meet at 12PM and returning at 8PM. This is another weekday meet, which means missed classes. It is very important that our athletes communicate with their teachers and take responsibility for not getting behind. We will expect everyone to have a "missed class" form completed before they can get on the bus. Coach Harris would also like to apologize that he will be out of town and not attending this meet. Coach Stafford will be in charge during this meet.

Friday 8/31

-Normal Practice: 3:30-6:00PM, easy mileage run with Coach Stafford.

Monday 9/3

-FORTitude 10k in Fort Collins: The Stein family has very generously donated 15 free race entries for the FORTitude 10k in Fort Collins on Labor Day 9/3. EPXC runners who are interested in attending, need to sign up with Coach Stafford this week. Once we know who is running, we will organize carpools down to the race. Runners will need to leave from Estes Park by 6AM and will likely return by 11AM. This 10k will be run as a tempo and not an all out race. This will be a great opportunity for athletes to get out and get a quality run next Monday. All runners who do not attend should plan to do a 5-6 mile run and near-tempo pace on their own in Estes. Race Website Link.

Thank you as always for your continued hard work, athletes, and support for the team, parents.  We are looking forward to a great rest of the season!

Lastly, remember any and all things relating to Estes Park Cross Country can be found on our team’s website: www.estesparkxc.com. AND, please frequent our team calendar as EPXC is jam-packed with races, practices, events, etc. throughout the season.

You all can also follow us on our team Facebook page HERE!

Here is to another AWESOME week! GO BOBCATS!!

#epxc #bobcatrunning #gobobcats

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