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The 2013 USA Track & Field Masters 5km Cross Country Championship was held on October 20, 2013 in Flemington, NJ. A record number of 450 athletes from all over the country toed the line to compete for national titles in 5 year age divisions. It was a perfect day for cross country racing. 44 year old Chad Newton from Pisgah Forest, NC won the overall masters race and his age group with a time of 15:31. Chad races at national championships for the Atlanta Track Club which swept the 40-49 year old team title with his teammates finishing 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 19th and 23rd.
Earlier in October Newton competed in the USATF National Masters 5km Road Championship hosted at the 21st Annual Syracuse Festival of Races in Syracuse, NY. Chad won the overall masters race and his age group with a time of 15:25 in this competitive national event and with the solid performances of his teammates, the ATC captured the team title.
With his 5000m win on the track at Masters Outdoor Track Nationals in Olathe, Kansas this past July; Chad has claimed 3 National 5km titles on diverse courses showing great range from track to road racing and cross country. He may be the only masters athlete to have claimed all three 5k National titles in one year. In all, he has won 4 National USATF Masters titles this year including his 1500m win on the track in Olathe. Newton said “I had it in the back of mind in Olathe that it might be possible to win all three 5k titles this year but, I focused on each race, one by one. It was a mixture of excitement and relief when I broke through the finish tape in Flemington.”
Newton is continuing his rigorous full time training along with his farm work preparing the Fraser fir fields at Crowsland Tree Farm in Brevard for the height of the Christmas tree season. His next race is the USATF Club Cross Country National Championship in Bend, Oregon. Training and competing on a national level is always challenging for a masters athlete as trying to stay injury free becomes more difficult as the body ages. Chad explained that “One difference I made in my training this year was to not peak for anyone race but, to try to train and run at a high level, 90-95% all year.” and concluded the interview with “As much of a thrill that it is to win races, my greatest pleasure is still to go out on runs in Pisgah Forest.”