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Shelby County to host XTERRA Americas Trail Run Championships

December 15, 2022

The XTERRA Americas half-marathon and full-marathon trail runs will award more than $5,000 in prize money, continental championship titles to runners in age group categories ranging from 15-19 to 80+, and XTERRA Trail Run World Championship qualifying spots to the top finishers in each division.

/ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – Oak Mountain State Park in Shelby County, Alabama has been selected as the destination host for the 2023 XTERRA Americas Trail Run Championships on May 21, 2023.

The XTERRA Americas half-marathon and full-marathon trail runs will award more than $5,000 in prize money, continental championship titles to runners in age group categories ranging from 15-19 to 80+, and XTERRA Trail Run World Championship qualifying spots to the top finishers in each division.

Two-person teams, aka “racing duos,” are also eligible for titles and qualifying spots (details below).

As one of the pinnacle events on the XTERRA Trail Run World Series calendar, the XTERRA Americas Trail Run Championships are expected to lure a high-quality field of runners from Canada to Chile and beyond.

“Oak Mountain has one of the best trail networks we’ve ever found,” said XTERRA US Technical Director, Kirk Ermels. “With the help of a few local trail running legends, we’ve designed a brand new course that provides the ultimate running tour of those trails, filled with beautiful scenery and epic views. It has a mix of terrain that will offer something for every type of runner, and I believe participants are really going to love the adventure we have in store for them.”

The expansive and picturesque park is one of the few venues in America that can accommodate an epic, single loop, mostly single track full-marathon trail race, and it is spectacular.

Steve Sievert, who won the 2021 XTERRA Oak Mountain Marathon in 4:17:30, described the trails as “Rugged, but just amazing. XTERRA is known for going to unbelievable places and challenging us with really difficult courses and this was no different.”

Surrounding the racing action is a family-friendly festival focused on delivering a premium outdoor lifestyle experience for athletes, spectators, destinations, and community members alike.

The Championship weekend of events also features 5K and 10K fun runs and a Kids K on the same day, all part of a massive weekend of endurance sports events that includes off-road triathlons, live music, beer gardens, bbq, camping, and more.

“The overwhelming support and collaboration from our destination partners at Shelby County and Oak Mountain State Park during the site selection process made this incredible weekend of events possible, and we cannot wait to share this world-class venue with our XTERRA Family from around the world,” said XTERRA Americas Tour Manager, Steve Andrus.

For visiting runners, it’s a chance to discover the trails Runner’s World Magazine called one of “America’s Crown Jewels – 25 best trails in the nation.”

“We are thrilled to welcome the XTERRA Americas Trail Championships to Oak Mountain State Park,” said Kendall Williams, Shelby County Manager for tourism and events. “We take great pride in our parks and county, and look forward to showing athletes from all over the world what true Southern hospitality is all about.”

All runners are welcome to enter and contend for the prize money being offered at the half and full marathon championships. A complete schedule of events and registration (early bird rates in effect until Dec. 31) can be found at xterraplanet.com/oakmountain.

About Shelby County

Find your trail and discover Shelby County. With a dynamic and thriving outdoor economy, the 808 square miles of Shelby County provide countless activities for exploration and discovery. Home to Oak Mountain State Park, Lay Lake, the Cahaba River, and over 130 miles of trails and parks, Shelby County offers diverse opportunities to escape and enjoy nature. Built with a community of outdoor adventurers at the forefront of its inspiration, Shelby County is driven by the transformative power of communal experiences in nature. Shelby County’s unique array of wineries, craft breweries, restaurants, and stores create one of a kind opportunities to savor and enjoy after an unforgettable day in the outdoors. To learn more and find your trail visit www.discovershelby.com.

About the XTERRA Trail Run World Series

The all-inclusive XTERRA Trail Run World Series features more than 30 events across 20 countries on five continents in 2023, awards points to runners at each race, and has its own custom-built global ranking system.

The Series incorporates marathon (35-to-60km) and half-marathon (15-to-34km) distances and awards regional and world championship recognition to individuals and teams at the 2023 XTERRA Trail Run World Championship.

The team competition, dubbed the “Racing Duo” category, awards points to teams of two people who run (and finish) together. There will also be segment challenges for both individuals and racing duos that award additional points to runners who set the fastest times during various portions of each race including best climb, fastest downhill, and quickest sprinter.

“This Series is for every runner who runs to explore, who thrives on dirt, hills, and fresh air, embraces personal challenge, and never stops asking what’s around the next corner. It’s a Series for every trail runner, amateur to elite, young and old, the sprinters, the scramblers, the climbers, and the crawlers,” said Emily McIlvaine, XTERRA Americas Event Coordinator.

The best part of the new XTERRA Trail Run World Series is the trails themselves, all bucket-list destinations that embody the spirit of discovery that drives the trail running community.

“Differing from other elite-focused trail running series, the XTERRA Trail Run World Series mixes travel and trail to deliver a running experience like no other to beginner, intermediate, and experienced trail runners alike,” said J-D Cousens, XTERRA VP of Operations & Global Marketing.

Learn more at xterraplanet.com.