LOS ANGELES – The UCLA cross country team will head to Central Park in Santa Clarita for the Mustang Challenge. The meet, hosted by The Masters College will be the second on the season for the Bruins. The women will start the morning at 8 a.m., while the men will follow at 8:45 a.m.
“We are really excited to be back racing,” UCLA cross country coach Forest Braden said. “Training has been going as well as it could and this team is really fired up to start racing.”
The Bruins spent a couple weeks training in the higher elevation near the Mammoth Lakes. UCLA opened the 2015 campaign two weeks ago under the lights at the Nevada Twilight Classic.
“Our depth has never been better on the men's side and the women are a very tough squad,” Braden explained. “Look for a pack of Bruin men up front throughout the race. They are supposed to control the tempo of the race. The ladies should have a nice grouping in the top 10 and we will definitely race to win. It should be a great day.”
The men, who are ranked No. 13 in the country in the USTFCCCA poll will compete on an 8k course. Sergey Sushchikh holds the course record with a time of 24:50.11.
The women will run a 5k as UCLA great Kelsey Smith set the course record with a time of 17:01.56. Both times were posted in the last trip for the Bruins at the Mustang Challenge in 2013.
UCLA will take next weekend off and then head to the Washington Invitational on Friday, Oct. 2. The Bruins had a lot of success last season in Seattle as the men placed second and the women finished fourth against a talented field.