Invitational Field at U.S. Army X-Country Festival at Maymont Stronger than Ever



The invitational division for the 2009 U.S. Army X-Country Festival at Maymont is shaping up to be the most competitive field to date for the meet in Richmond, VA.  There are currently ten schools that placed in the Top 10 of their respective state meets last year, including three Division 2 Champions, running at Maymont on September 26th. 


After last year’s success, which featured over 3,000 athletes from 118 schools, meet director, Dan Ward, is confident that the 2009 event will showcase some of the best cross-country teams in the country. “Looking at who’s already committed to coming to the 2009 U.S. Army X-Country Festival at Maymont, this year [Maymont] will be among the most competitive meets in the country.  Powerhouses like Tatnall from Delaware, Cherokee from New Jersey and Warren from California are excited about the opportunity to run in such a competitive meet early in the season,” says Ward.  “The whole festival offers a great atmosphere for all levels of runners.  Combine that with an elite field and the beauty of Maymont Park and you have a meet that is unlike any other.” 


With more schools joining daily, the list of teams committed to run in the invitational division so far includes:



Brookwood – GA

Tatnall – DE

Archmere Academy – DE

Lake Norman – NC

Walt Whitman – MD

Warren – CA

Blacksburg – VA

Thomas Edison – VA



Cherokee – NJ

Morristown West – TN

Walt Whitman – MD

Archmere Academy – DE

Tatnall – DE

Salesianum – DE

Blacksburg – VA

West Springfield – VA

Green – OH  


The Tatnall School, led by Coach Patrick Castagno, is traveling from Delaware with both its boys and girls teams.  Tatnall’s girls team rounded out the 2008 season as D2 Champions, an NTN qualifier, and also won last year’s invitational division at Maymont. This year, they have five of seven runners returning.  The boys were the 2008 D2 Runner-up and also have five of seven runners returning for 2009.   Coach Castagno is looking forward to participating in Maymont for the fourth time this year.  “The Maymont Invitational is a class above most meets we have attended – and we travel more than most teams.  We have run invitationals in DE, MD, PA, GA, NC, AL, OR, NY, and NJ all in the past 2 years.  Maymont maintains as one our favorite and most well run.” 


Coach Chris Carter, of Brookwood High School, is bringing his girls team to participate in this year’s invitational division at the U.S. Army X-Country Festival at Maymont.  Brookwood finished 4th at Georgia’s 5A meet in 2008 and retains four of their top seven runners, with two talented newcomers in the mix.  Coach Carter sees Maymont as the perfect opportunity to both improve his team and gain recognition for his program. “Brookwood has been competitive on a state level, and we want to see if we can compete on a regional or national level.  The course is challenging and the teams who compete at Maymont are consistently among the best in the country.  There are only a handful of meets with such competitive fields.” 


Jon Lugbill, executive director of the Richmond Sports Backers, the meet organizer, is especially excited about the nationwide recognition of the event.  “We have always had some really strong programs run at Maymont, and this year will be no exception.  Already having invitational teams from eight different states shows how the U.S. Army X-Country Festival at Maymont has risen to national prominence in the sport of cross-country.” 


Registration for the September 26th meet in Richmond, VA will close on Sunday, September 6.  Sign up online at  For more information visit the U.S. Army X-Country Festival website or contact  If your team qualifies for the invitational division, contact Dan Ward, at