Friday, February 5, 2010

Kudos to USATF

We just received official word that the USATF will be providing funding for the US 24-Hour Team.  Here is the press release:

In a landmark decision that shows support for the sport of U.S. Ultrarunning, USA Track & Field will provide funding for the 2010 Team USA Ultra teams competing at the 100 km and 24-Hour World Championship events.

Previously the two annual national ultra teams were self-funded, relying on temporary sponsorships and donations, and team members' personal funds. The recent decision by USATF will underwrite a significant portion of the two teams' travel expenses, and will provide opportunities for grants from the championship host events and other organizations to cover the remaining costs.

"It's an historic decision and a welcome statement of support for our world-class American athletes from USA Track & Field," said American Ultrarunning Association President Roy Pirrung, the 24-Hour Run national team manager, who is also a former national champion, national record holder, and 7-time national team member in the 24 Hour event. "We're grateful to USATF and its new leadership for taking this huge step to enable our best ultra athletes to represent their country on the world stage."

As Roy Pirrung said, this is wonderful news for the ultra community.  USATF has really stepped up to help ultra athletes, not just shorter distance Olympic athletes.  Hopefully, USAFT's commitment will continue into the future and the ultra-running community will continue to improve and gain more runners and supporters.

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