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King to Defend XTERRA Trail Running National Title

Bend, Oregon's own Max King will defend his title - and his distinction as the "King of XTERRA Trail Running" - at the 2010 XTERRA Trail Running National Championship on Saturday, September 18 in Bend.

King (left), 30, is the two-time defending XTERRA Trail Running national champion. He dominated the field at last year's race in Bend, finishing more than six minutes ahead of his closest competition.

"For one thing, it's right in my backyard," King said. "The main thing that keeps me coming back, though, is that it is a mid-distance trail race that's competitive. I would like to see these shorter distance races really take off, draw good competition, and have a win at one be as prestigious as winning a major road race."

Around 500 trail runners from around the country are expected to participate in the 21-kilometer race that traverses alongside the Deschutes River.

King completed last year's race in a record time of 1 hour, 6 minutes, 46 seconds. Ben Bruce of Eugene, Ore. was runner-up in 1:12:58.

King is considered one of America's top endurance athletes. In June, he won the USA Half Marathon Trail Championship, and also placed fifth at the Mountain Running National Championships. He also qualified to compete in the Mountain Running World Championships at Slovenia on Sunday, September 5.

King is also the two-time defending champion of the XTERRA Trail Running World Championship. This year's XTERRA World Championship is scheduled for Sunday, December 5 at Kualoa Ranch, Oahu, Hawaii.

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