Olympian and Mile Record Holder Alan Webb to start the XC BORDER WAR 6

Mon, 5 Dec. 2011 - 9:45 p.m. MT
Credit: Dave Watt - American Running Association

Former Olympian and Native VA XC and Track Star Returns to his running roots 

Bethesda, Maryland — It has been just over 10 years since Alan Webb dazzled high school runners with his record-setting cross country races in his native Virginia and throughout the nation.   Webb went on to break the mile record for a high schooler, turn pro, run in the 2004 Olympics and then break the American Record in the Mile.   After a two year period of training under the guidance of famed Olympian and coach Alberto Salazar, Alan Webb has returned to Virginia.   On Saturday, Webb will be the honorary starter for the 6th running of the Battle of the Potomac XC Championship, aka the XC Border War.

The cross-country event will be held November 19 at Smokey Glen Farm in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The unique state vs. state cross-country meet pits the best of Maryland, the District of Columbia, Virginia, and West Virginia in a 5K race.

“We are excited to honor and welcome back to the DC Metro Region one of the greatest runners in Virginia cross country and track history at our event,” announces Dave Watt, American Running Association (ARA) executive director.  “Alan is the guy that today’s high school runners hold in high admiration and respect”, adds Watt. “His story and accomplishments will always resonate with the youth of Virginia, Maryland, DC and West Virginia”.

Webb set his high school cross country marks and track records at South Lakes High School in Reston Virginia.  Under the guidance and coaching of Scott Raczko, Alan Webb carved out one of the storied youth running careers in US history.  In his senior year of high school cross country, Webb set course records everywhere he raced.  His course record 3 mile time on the famed Burke Lake Course in Northern Virginia is still #1 time by over 40 seconds.   His state meet course record is considered untouchable. 

Webb’s name became legendary in the spring of his senior year, when he followed up his indoor sub-4 minute mile by breaking Jim Ryun’s high school mile record in dramatic fashion.   Webb entered the famed Prefontaine Classic in the Bowerman Mile and shattered the record of Ryun with a 3:53 clocking.

Webb furthered his status in American Track & Field history by breaking the American Record in July in Europe with his still-standing 3:46.91 mile. 

Alan Webb moved back east to Charlottesville Virginia in July of this summer with his wife Julia Rudd Webb.  He is training under UVA head track coach Jason Vigilante after the two and a half year period with Salazar.

The 6th Battle of the Potomac, also known as Battle XC5 or XC Border War 6 will kick-off at 12:45 p.m. with the middle school boys and girls running a 2.5K race. This will be followed by the open and seeded 5K races. To view the complete schedule and event information, go to www.battlexc.com.            

The Battle of the Potomac XC Championships is produced by the Bethesda, Maryland-based American Running Association (ARA). This championship meet, which involves four neighboring states, serves as a venue to encourage more kids to become interested in the sport of running and to become runners themselves. All proceeds from the meet help produce the event and support ARA’s free youth walk-run training programs. ARA is a nonprofit organization founded in 1968 to promote healthy living and active lifestyles among all Americans. It is dedicated to supporting runners through education and specialized programs, as well as encouraging all individuals from children to adults to run and be fit. For more information about the association or to learn more about the walk-run programs, visit www.americanrunning.org.

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