Dores release 2012 slate
May 31, 2012
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Vanderbilt cross country Head Coach Steve Keith has released the 2012 schedule for his men's and women's teams.
The slate is highlighted by the 2012 SEC Championships being hosted by Vanderbilt at Nashville's Percy Warner Park. The Belmont-VU Opener and the Commodore Classic will be held at the park's Vaughn's Gap course, as well.
"We're very happy with this schedule, as we will have both some familiar race courses, as well as something new," Keith said. "Our whole focus is on defending our women's SEC title and getting back to the national championships."
The Commodores will look to do just that, starting with the Belmont-VU Opener in Nashville on August 31.
The Commodore Classic will follow that meet on September 15. This year's Classic is expected to include several SEC teams, as it will be run on the same course as the SEC Championships.
"With our first two meets at home in Percy Warner, that gives us a great chance to run all of our squad together and really focus on the team aspect," Keith said.
Vanderbilt will then hit the road for the Greater Louisville Classic on September 29. The meet will be run on the course that will host the 2012 NCAA Championships and is expected to include some of the best teams in the nation.
"We've been on the course at Louisville quite a bit and this will give us a chance to run on the national championship course a little earlier in the season," Keith said. "The men have really benefited from running this meet in Louisville with some fast times and a tight team grouping."
On October 12 and 13, the Commodores will travel to meets at Wisconsin and Evansville, respectively.
"Going back to Wisconsin will provide us with a similar opportunity to last year to race against a high national level field at a very important part of the season," said Keith. "Evansville, for both the men and the women, is new and should provide a fair opportunity to help in the selection of our 10-person SEC squads."
The SEC Championships will then be held at Percy Warner on October 26.
"Hosting the SEC meet will be a little bit of extra work, but it will be a nice home course advantage to race in a familiar setting with plenty of family and friends in attendance," Keith said.
Between the SEC meet and the start of NCAA competition, the Commodores will travel to the Virginia/Panorama Farms Open.
"The Virginia Open is a new meet on the schedule and will allow our whole squad the ability to continue training together with a great season ending goal for those not running at the SECs or the NCAA Regional," Keith said.
The NCAA South Regional will be hosted by Florida State in Tallahassee this season on November 9. The Commodores will be hoping to advance from there to the NCAA Championships in Louisville on November 17.
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