Foot Locker Nationals In San Diego

Dear Friends,

I’d like to take the time to thank everyone who generously volunteers their time, energy, and funding to make Friends such a supportive organization. Lindy and I were humbled by the generosity regarding funding of our trip to San Diego to support Gannon at Foot Locker Nationals. The trip was a blast and I’d like to share a bit about it for anyone who wishes to continue reading.

By finishing seventh in 15:01 at the Foot Locker South Regional Meet, Gannon became the fourth Warrior to qualify for the National Meet and the first to do it as a junior (Mark Smith, 1990, Kyle Satterwhite, 2008, Mattie Webb, 2010).  On Thursday, December 11th, we left the Charlottesville airport at 5:15, meaning we got to CHO at 4:00 in the morning. Yikes! When we arrived in San Diego, Gannon was promptly whisked away by the Foot Locker folks. I firmly believe he was treated like royalty from the moment we touched down until the moment he left on Sunday morning.

The meet headquarters was at the Hotel del Coronado. You might want to Google image search that name, dear readers, for my photos below surely won’t do it justice. Simply put, the hotel was majestic. When Gannon was off participating in official activities with the other athletes, the rest of us had a blast reading by the pool, exploring the beach, and meandering through the little shops in and around the Hotel del Coronado. We ate delicious Mexican food on a number of occasions in addition to attending a formal banquet hosted by meet management. Perhaps the best meal of the trip for me was at a small sushi joint on Saturday afternoon after Gannon’s race. Athletes, coaches, and parents alike were lucky to hear from elite athletes on multiple occasions, including Alan Webb, Adam Goucher, Deena Kastor, Meb Keflezighi, Kara Goucher, and many more.

Now let’s get down to business: running. We previewed the course on Friday morning and it was sloppy. An uncommonly persistent rainstorm lasted pretty much all day, which saturated the course thoroughly. The lush grass became extremely spongy in places and one steep downhill in particular became really slick and slippery. By Saturday the weather had cleared up, but the course was still a little more damp than desirable. I was really proud to see Gannon wearing his usual shoes, pants, and jacket in which to warmup on Saturday morning. Many of the other athletes were sporting their new Asics gear. The gifts were ample, but really, couldn’t those kids have waited until after the most competitive race of their season to try new out new gear? Come on, people; dance with the one that brung ya!

The race itself went well! Gannon managed to stay on his feet the whole time, which is more than some athletes were able to say. He made a big move sometime between 1.5 and 2 miles and gained a lot of ground on the pack. It was nice to see Gannon really competing and mixing it up with this national caliber field instead of being satisfied just to have qualified. He finished in 16:04 for 28th place. Despite finishing 7th at the South Regional, Gannon was the 4th finisher on the South squad at the National meet. In addition, he was the 7th junior the cross the finish line in San Diego. Apologies to those of you trying to watch the live webcast on Foot Locker’s website. I understand it was pretty choppy this year.

All in all, the trip was a great experience for everyone involved. Getting some experience with such a competitive field and seeing the course could pay dividends in the future for Gannon. Lindy and I feel privileged to coach such a dedicated and humble young man. Now it’s back to track season for the next 7 months!

Thanks again for all of the continued support and generosity!

Cass

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Gannon and Chance at 5:00 in the morning, having been up for at least 2 hours already!

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Cass, Chance, Gannon, and Lindy on the rear steps at the Hotel del Coronado.

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The view from the porch off Cass and Lindy’s room.

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Gannon showing his excitement at his race uniform!

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Gannon with parents Kate and Brian after the race.

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Gannon and Peter Seufer (EC Glass High School in Lynchburg) compare experiences after the race.

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Gannon with two time race winner Grant Fisher at the banquet.

Support Friends of WAHS Cross Country, Track & Field

Dear Friends,WahsCircletypesmall

Our WAHS cross country, track and field athletes learn perseverance and teamwork, celebrate personal bests and enjoy great camaraderie. As parents, alumni and parents of alumni, we know you are grateful for these experiences.

Friends of Western Albemarle Cross Country, Track and Field was formed as a tax exempt nonprofit by a group of parents in 2010 to support our student athletes and the amazing coaches who provide them with guidance and encouragement to achieve their personal goals.

This past year, Friends has:

  • Provided stipends for unpaid assistant coaches
  • Purchased a new tent and rolling case for the teams
  • Purchased a new pole vault pole used by Caleb Rider to win the National Emerging Elite Championship
  • Paid expenses for coaches traveling to Outdoor Nationals

We are also here to quietly ease financial burdens for athletes who might otherwise not be able to compete in invitational or national meets. (Speak with a coach and they can make confidential arrangements – even for new running shoes.) In the past few years, Friends made possible the Old Trail course and arranged for its maintenance, purchased a new pole vault pit and successfully advocated for the replacement of the outdoor track at WAHS.

Did we mention that we pay our uncompensated assistant coaches?

We estimate this year’s expenses to be approximately $5,000, most of which goes to our assistant coaching staff over three seasons. As you may know, school budgets, especially athletic budgets, have been trimmed again. This year we are hoping to purchase a shipping container to protect our outdoor track equipment. Paying assistant coaches and purchasing needed equipment is only possible through your generosity. This letter is our only annual fundraiser. Friends is a 501c3 nonprofit organization, so your donation is tax deductible.

Please consider making a personally significant donation today to support our cross country, track and field programs. You may write a check made out to Friends of WAHS Track and use the envelope enclosed in our mailing, or you may donate using a credit card online via PayPal on our website, http://www.FriendsofWAHSTrack.org. Click the GIVE tab.

Please subscribe to our blog on our website for emailed updates on our teams, and also follow us on Facebook, where results and photos from meets are posted.

Thank you for your support.

Kim Connolly, President

Doug Taylor, Secretary

Alyce Outlaw, Treasurer

Kathleen Capshaw, Member at Large

Charles Cole, Member at Large

Teresa Grupp, Member at Large

Carol Stutzman, Member at Large

A Thank You from Coach Whitten

This letter from Coach Whitten is a great reminder of why our Friends group was formed. Friends was able to pay for the coaches’ hotel rooms and gas. None of this can happen without the support of our donor members. Thank you!

“Dear Friends of Western Albemarle Cross Country, Track & Field,

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the support that you gave to help cover expenses for the New Balance Outdoor Nationals we attended in June.

Seven girls traveled to Greensboro and four coaches. This was the first trip to Nationals for five of the seven girls. What a wonderful experience! By now, I am sure that most of you know how well the girls competed. Katrina Barredo cleared the opening height in pole vault but just missed the next height. Lydia Garner cleared two heights, equalling her PR. Annie Taylor competed in the mile, two mile and ran anchor on the 6th place DMR. Also running on the DMR were Averi Witt, Val Hajek and Chance Masloff. The girls ran an awesome race. Great job by Caroline Outlaw who was an alternate for the relay. She ran on the days leading up to the race and was prepared to run on the relay at a moment’s notice if needed. Averi was also runner-up in the freshman mile. And, on the boy’s side, Caleb Rider won the Emerging Elite Pole Vault!

Western Albemarle was well represented in Greensboro! What a wonderful way to end our indoor season. We are looking forward to returning next year. Thank you very much for your continued support of our athletes and coaches.

Sincerely,

Marie Whitten

Conference Meet at WAHS May 22

Eight teams are competing in the Conference 29 meet this week, hosted at WAHS. We anticipate the events to begin around 3:00. Volunteers are still needed to help with concessions. Please visit our Sign Up Genius page to help with a shift. http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0B45ABA92EA57-may22home

Friends will receive 40% of the proceeds from the concessions. That helps us provide our wonderful assistant coaches with stipends as well as make one-time purchases such as this 10′ x 20′ new team tent. Image

Volunteers Needed for Dogwood Meet May 3

ImageThe Dogwood Track Classic is bigger and better this year. On Friday evening May 2, the SMR and DMR will run. Then on May 3, the main meet begins at noon, with teams coming from across the state.There will be a new, state of the art timing system with LIVE results shown on electronic boards.

This meet is put on by AHS, CHS, MHS and WAHS to raise funds for our track teams. We cannot do it without the support of parent and student volunteers. Please visit SignUp Genius for volunteer slots. At this point, concessions in the afternoon and also Cleanup/breakdown are most needed. Please give a couple of hours to help make this event a success.

Important Spring Meet Dates for Volunteers

Important Spring Meet Dates for Volunteers

Important dates to remember:

  • Home meets at WAHS are Thursday April 24 and Wednesday May 14.
  • The Dogwood Track Classic May 2 and 3 has a new format this year – Friday night for the DMR and SMR relay teams and then a noon start on Saturday to allow for SATs and teams traveling from a distance. There is a new, state of the art timing system, too! “All events will be FAT timed by Flash Results, the preeminent timing company in the country that annually handles the NCAA and USATF championship meets. In addition to providing live online results throughout the meet, Flash Results also provides two large scoreboards at the start/finish line that will display start lists, a running time clock, wind readings and instant event results.”

Many thanks to the Dogwood meet sponsor, Asics for their continued support of our local high schools through this meet. Please support them back by group ordering your team apparel from Asics via Ragged Mountain Running Shop. This meet’s revenues are split by all our Albemarle County public high schools’ track teams and we could not put on a quality meet without Asic’s sponsorship of the costs.

We’ll be updating this page with a call for volunteers.

2014 Indoor Regional Meet was Memorable!

2014 Indoor Regional Meet was Memorable!

Mark Lorenzoni wrote this great story for The Daily Progress on the Regional Indoor meet. States are this weekend, again at Liberty University. Good luck, Warriors!

Please Support the Work of Friends of WAHS Track

Dear Friends,

ImageOur WAHS cross country, track and field athletes learn perseverance and teamwork, and enjoy great camaraderie and also physical fitness. As parents, alumni and parents of alumni, we know you are grateful for these experiences.

Friends of Western Albemarle Cross Country, Track and Field exists to support our student athletes and the amazing coaches who provide them with guidance and encouragement to achieve their personal bests.

This past year, Friends has:

  • Provided stipends for unpaid assistant coaches
  • Purchased a new throwing pit for the school for discus and shot put
  • Purchased a new tent and rolling case for the teams (arriving soon!)

We are also here to quietly ease financial burdens for athletes who might otherwise not be able to compete in invitational or national meets. (Speak with a coach and they can make confidential arrangements with us.) In the past few years, Friends made possible the Old Trail course and arranged for its maintenance (now to be taken over completely by Old Trail!), purchased a new pole vault pit and successfully advocated for the replacement of the outdoor track at WAHS.

Did we mention that we pay our uncompensated assistant coaches?

We estimate this year’s expenses to be approximately $3,000, most of which goes to our assistant coaching staff over three seasons. This is only possible through your generosity. Friends is a 501 c 3 nonprofit organization, so your donation is tax deductible.

Please consider making a personally significant donation today to support our cross country, track and field programs. You may write a check made out to Friends of WAHS Track and use the enclosed envelope, or you may donate using a credit card online via PayPal on our website, http://www.FriendsofWAHSTrack.org. Please subscribe to our blog on our website for emailed updates on our teams, and also follow us on Facebook, where results and photos from meets are posted.

Thank you for your support.

Kim Connolly, President

Doug Taylor, Secretary

Alyce Outlaw, Treasurer

Carol Stutzman, Member at Large

Charles Cole, Member at Large

News Story on Regional Cross Country Meet

The Charlottesville Daily Progress has the scoop on yesterday’s Regional meet at Panorama Farm. You can see the entire  story by clicking on this photo.Image

Photos from Regionals

Photos from Regionals

Please visit our Facebook page to see photos from yesterday’s regional meet. Congratulations to the boys and girls teams for their second place finishes. On to states!

And THANK YOU to our wonderful coaches!