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NTN will have Regional Championships

Regional Meets, Not Rankings, Will Decide Which Teams Race at 2007 Nike Team Nationals

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ilana Finley – Nike, Inc.

503.671.6734, Ilana.Finley@Nike.com

NTN ReadIEs FOR 4TH Annual Championship with New Regional Qualifying Format

Regional Meets, Not Rankings, Will Dictate Which Teams Race For The National Title

 

BEAVERTON, ORE, March 19, 2007 – Talk is cheap, rankings are subjective. LET’S RACE!

That might be the slogan of the Nike Team Nationals in its fourth year. Nike announced today that regional championship meets will replace the rankings process for selection of teams to NTN.

Nike Team Nationals, the highly successful national cross country team Championship held in Portland the past three years, will expand to regional meets in 2007. The top teams in the regional meets will qualify for the highly popular meet at Portland Meadows racetrack the first Saturday in December 2007.

The change in format is part of a continued effort to provide the highest platform for team cross country competition. Much like the NCAA model for hosting cross country national championships, the NTN regional qualifying process allows for the purest possible stage for XC competition.

“The best thing about the sport of running is that there is no room for subjectivity,” said Brian O’Connor, Nike’s Global Brand Marketing Manager for Running. “In cross country the team score decides, and the fastest team to cross the line on a given day is the winner. A regional qualifying format means we can make sure this happens.”

In another change, New York will be in a region by itself after dominating the first three years of NTN.

Here is the schedule of the new NTN regional meets:

November 10
Heartland
Midwest
Northwest

November 17
Southwest
South

November 24
Northeast
Southeast
New York

As in the past, each region will have two automatic bids to NTN, determined by the first two finishers in the regional championship, except for California, whose two automatic bids will be selected by the NTN committee. In addition, there will be four national at large invitations selected by the NTN committee, increasing this year’s field to 22-teams that will compete in the national meet. 

The 2007 Nike Team Nationals will be held on Saturday, December 1, 2007 at the Portland Meadows race track. Nike Team Nationals stands as the only national XC team championship offering XC clubs composed of the best high-school-age athletes and younger an opportunity to compete against each other in a team setting.

About Nike Team Nationals

The Nike Team Nationals is a part of the larger Nike Nationals championship series which includes the Nike Outdoor Nationals and Nike Indoor Nationals. The series of events was established in 2004 to help strengthen the national circuit for high school cross country and track and field competition.

Following in the tradition of European cross country meets, the event will again feature a multiple loop race course with man-made obstacles built on the inside of the horse race track. Spectators will be able to enjoy a continuous live view of the race from the venue’s enclosed 3,000-seat grandstand. Again this year the Nike Team National event is providing coaches handheld computer devices, utilizing FinishLynx tracking technology (created specifically for Nike Team Nationals), to see team scores posted to a live leader board every kilometer. The technology was first introduced in the race's inaugural year and provides instant feedback on a team's position in the race allowing coaches to adjust strategy in the midst of the event. In addition to real-time race tracking, event data is then transferred live to dyestat.com and to www.niketeamnationals.com following the completion of the race so spectators, participants and coach can replay the race and see how select teams and/or individuals ran.

About Nike

NIKE, Inc based in Beaverton, Oregon is the world’s leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide varied of sports and fitness activities. Wholly owned Nike subsidiaries include Converse, Inc., which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories; Bauer NIKE Hockey Inc., a leading designer and distributor of hockey equipment; Cole Haan®, which designs, markets and distributes fine dress and casual shoes and accessories; and Hurley International LLC, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories.

For more information, go online to www.niketeamnationals.com or www.dyestat.com



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