Woodbridge High hosted the 37th annual Cross Country Invitational at SilverLakes Sports Complex in Norco, Calif. on September 15-16 for the second year in a row. According to reports, the Woodbridge Invitational is now the largest high school cross country meet in the entire world.
“[The Invitational] is a pretty big deal each year, but this year it is especially important this year because of the increase in size and,”girls cross country captain, Lucia Chang, said.
Woodbridge took home a first-place award for the freshman boys team, and the junior boys team took home second place overall.
The invitational featured over 10,000 runners, 28 races, and over 100 staff and volunteers. The invitational was sponsored by Skechers and featured a guest appearance from Edward Cheserek, a 17 time NCAA champion collegiate distance runner, who is also sponsored by the athletic brand.
The invitational featured a race known as “Sweepstakes”, where the fastest runners from each team compete individually against one another. The boys Sweepstakes winner was Justin Hazel, who ran a time of 13 minutes and 59 seconds for a three-mile course (about 4.5 minutes per mile). The girls Sweepstakes winner was Corie Smith, who ran a time of 15 minutes and 58 seconds for the same three-mile course (about 5.3 minutes per mile).
“Without the help of the [Woodbridge] parents and athletes, none of this would be possible,” WHS Head XC coach Bryan Pacheco said.
The Woodbridge Invitational is normally hosted at the Irvine Great Park but has been moved to Norco for the past two years due to pricing and scheduling conflicts.