Now let HepsWeek begin!
We’re only a few days away from the 2015 Heps Cross Country Championships. HepsXC will be returning to Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx for the first time since 2010, but it will not be the exact same experience as it was before.
Van Cortlandt Park has undergone some renovations to their trails and grass fields that the championship courses will be racing around that resulted in HepsXC being relocated to Princeton, NJ for the 2011 to 2014 editions. In addition, the official HepsXC racing distances have increased since the last time we were at Van Cortlandt Park – the men will now be racing 8km instead of 5 miles, and the women will be going the 6km distance instead of 5km. While many alumni are not 100% on board yet with the new distances, the distances are consistent with other meets the athletes have raced so far this season. But what has not changed is the difficulty of the course. The hills are still there in the back forested region, including the game-changing Cemetery Hill. Just read these recollections of racing at VCP by both coaches and former athletes, provided by Tracksmith.
Good news though – the weather appears to be in our favor. Some rain is predicted for New York City on Wednesday (likely the remnants of Hurricane Patricia) but there will be enough time for the course to drain out before the races start at 11am on Friday.
How can you follow the meet? The fastest way is through social media. If you have Twitter, each school has their own account (for a compiled list, see here) and they will likely be updating them throughout the course of the meet. We will be doing our best to follow the meet from afar, as we will be using #HepsXC for any related posts. Some of the teams will be using other methods of social media, like Snapchat. Details on who is using what will be coming out later this week.
Until then, stay tuned for our team previews and other information related to the meet. Good luck to all teams on Friday!
Photo: Jeanne Noonan for New York Daily News