For Immediate Release

27 March 2015

Credit Union Cherry Blossom Media Contact Information:
(not for publication)

Keith Peters, Credit Union Cherry Blossom Media Coordinator
307-690-6803 or kpeters@cherryblossom.org

Website: www.cherryblossom.org


Top International and U.S. Runners Toe the Line; Special American Record Bonus

March 27, 2015, Washington, DC: With just over two weeks to go until the 43rd Running of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run there are incentives for both international and U.S. runners to be chasing after fast times. The international field will be battling for a total prize purse of $40,000, with $8,000 going to the male and female champions, while the American field will be in pursuit of an additional $25,000 U.S. purse and a shot at a $10,000 bonus for breaking the men's or women's American Record (split if both a man and a woman break the record).

Headlining the American men's field is Jared Ward, recently crowned USA Marathon Champion at the Asics Los Angeles Marathon. Ward will be in pursuit of Greg Meyer's longstanding American Record of 46:13, set here in 1983. Julia Bottorff, who recently ran a personal best of 51:11 at the Gate River Run 15K in Jacksonville, FL, heads the field of American women who will be going after Janet Bawcom's American Record of 52:12, set here last year. The elite women's race will start at 7:18 a.m. on Sunday, April 12, 2015, with the elite men and seeded open runners starting at 7:30 a.m.; some 15,000 other runners will then be set off in five more waves between 7:33-7:53 a.m.

The field of international runners is also coming together. After two very close finishes, 2013 men's champion and 2014 runner-up Kenyan Daniel Salel will return to test the judges' eyesight once again, while three-time women's champion Lineth Chepkurui, also from Kenya, will be looking for the level of performance that earned her consecutive victories in 2008, '09 and '10.

Other notable elite runners entered to date include: Kenyan Leonard Korir, who recently won the 2015 NYC Half Marathon in a time of 1:01:06; American Luke Puskedra, who has a half marathon best of 1:01.36 and recently ran 46:25 at the Gate River Run 15K; Kenyan Mary Wacera, 2014 PRRO Series Champion; and American Serena Burla, who ran 1:10:48 to win the 2014 USA Half Marathon Championship.

Please Note: Both the men's and women's fields are sure to see notable additions over the next couple of weeks; the complete roster of elite runners will be announced on Tuesday, April 7th.

"With all the attention the elite field gets in the lead-up to the 10-mile every year, it is unusual for the 5K Run-Walk to draw much pre-race interest," said Race Director Phil Stewart. "That certainly won't be the case this year, as we welcome 90-year-old Dixon Hemphill back for his 28th appearance at the Runner's Rite of Spring. Dixon and three of his 90-year-old Potomac Valley Track Club teammates just set the World Record for the 4 x 800 meter relay at last weekend's USATF Masters Indoor Championships, with a time of 29:47.68."

Over 26,000 runners submitted applications to participate in the 2015 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile and 5K Run-Walk, and the list of accepted runners represents all 50 states and 14 foreign countries. With a field limit of 15,000 established by the National Park Service and selected by lottery in December, not everyone who hoped to run will be able to participate in the only truly elite race to be run in our Nation's Capital.

Spots are still available in the 1/2 mile Credit Union Cherry Blossom Kids' Run, which will start at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday, April 12. Registration is limited to the first 400 to sign-up at http://www.cherryblossom.org/theraces/kidsrun.php.

Since 2002, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run and 5K Run-Walk have raised over $6.5 million for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. The 2015 event will mark the 14th year of title sponsorship by Credit Union Miracle Day.

About the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile:

The Credit Union Cherry Blossom is known as "The Runner's Rite of Spring" in the Nation's Capital. The staging area for the event is on the Washington Monument Grounds and the course passes in sight of all of the major Washington, DC Memorials. The event serves as a fundraiser for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, a consortium of 170 premier children's hospitals across the United States. About one-third of the funds raised support Washington, DC's own Children's National Medical Center ("Children's Hospital"). The event also funds two $5,000 Road Runners Club of America "Roads Scholar" grants designed to support up-and-coming U.S. distance running talent.

Credit Union Miracle Day, Inc., a consortium of credit unions and credit union suppliers, is the title sponsor of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run and 5K Run-Walk. PSCU is the lead financial partner of Credit Union Miracle Day, Inc. Supporting sponsors include New Balance, Gatorade, Gold's Gym, Navy Federal Credit Union, Larabar, BAE Systems, E-Trade, Cabot Creamery Cooperative, MarathonFoto and Potomac River Running.

The event is a proud member of the PRRO Circuit (www.PRRO.org), a five-race non-marathon prize money circuit with events in Utica, NY; San Juan, PR; Washington, DC; Spokane, WA and Atlanta, GA. The circuit is committed to a drug-free sport and engages USADA to conduct drug testing at all circuit events.

In addition to being sanctioned by USA Track & Field and the Road Runners Club of America, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run has earned Silver certification from the Council For Responsible Sport for its many environmentally and socially responsible initiatives.

About America's Credit Unions:

Credit unions provide consumers choices for financial services such as checking accounts, investments and loans of all kinds including mortgages. Funds are federally insured, but unlike banks, there are no stockholders at credit unions. Earnings are returned to member-owners in the form of lower loan rates, higher savings rates, low or no-fee products and services. The credit union philosophy of placing members' needs first is why more than 98.9 million Americans do their banking at one of America's 6,800 credit unions. Credit unions are for everyone - no matter where you live, there is a credit union to meet your needs.

To find a credit union near you visit:

www.asmarterchoice.org or www.culookup.com

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