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The Montana Cup cross-country meet offers an exploration of Montana’s magnificent open spaces. It is not a road race, nor is it an ultra-endurance trail run; it's a team event, which brings together runners from all of Montana’s regions for competition, racing across country, for the glory of claiming a “traveling trophy” – the Montana Cup.
The Montana Cup’s underlying mission is to unite the state’s widespread runners & running communities, to foster continued training & racing among Montana runners of all ages, and to leave each participant thinking ... "that course was excellent, exciting & beautiful!"
1) In 2023, the venue is the beautiful Zinn Ranch, located nine miles west of Helena at the base of MacDonald Pass. Our extremely generous host does have some rules for the use of this private property. These will be strictly enforced:
- No alcohol, drugs, or tobacco
- No dogs
2) All participants are required to wear an official team jersey. In 2023, we are transitioning from an "everybody purchases a jersey" model to "everyone wears a jersey" model emphasizing the use of race-day loaners going forward. Specifically:
- everyone still needs to run in an official MT Cup jersey
- everyone pays the same entry fee ($25 + RunSignUp fee)
- returning runners can run in their own jersey indefinitely (as has always been the case)
- Team Captains (aka Regional Organizers) are encouraged to round-up unused jerseys from their region for reassignment or use in "the stash"
- runners who need a jersey on race day can borrow one from the host stash, and return it for laundering
- if a runner really wants to keep the jersey, they can buy it ($15) at the conclusion of the race (these funds will be used to replenish the stash)
- after laundering the jerseys, the host team will pass the stash along to the next host city
To get this new system started, Team Helena has placed a large order to try to ensure there are plenty of loaners available in a variety of sizes for all of the regions. Many thanks to Team Missoula / Run Wild Missoula for generously donating last year's net proceeds toward helping make this order possible!
3) You must represent the team of the Montana city that you live in, or nearest to (team regions defined at montanacup.com). Montana residency is required, and may be verified at race-day check in. Residency is defined as “currently living, working, or schooling inside Montana.” This includes military personnel stationed in state. There is no limit on number of runners per team.
4) Non-residents and athletes listed on the roster of any collegiate cross-country or track team may run as unaffiliated / non-scoring competitors. They will not enter into team scoring, but are eligible for individual awards.
5) Every year's race course is different but the distance is always between 5k and 8k, usually with challenging cross-country running over rough terrain with grass, dirt, gravel, steep ups & downs with poor footing, and possible mud/snow crossings, etc. Normally, any type of running/racing shoe with adequate traction and protection is appropriate. It may be a good idea to bring a variety of shoes so that you can pick the most appropriate pair after you see the course on race morning.
6) For additional details, see the official Montana Cup Rules.
Additional race information can be found at http://montanacup.com.
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