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Washington, DC: It has been a long time coming — too long — and America’s finest distance runners are eager to toe the starting line at the 2021 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile (CUCB), to be held in our Nation’s Capital on Sunday, September 12. With $26,000 in U.S. championship prize money on offer as well as a $10,000 bonus for an American Record (the bonus will be split if both the male and female break the American records), road racing fans can look forward to hotly contested races among both the men and women.

“It has been nearly two years since the last time the U.S. Ten Mile Championships for men and women were held,” said event director Phil Stewart. “I know a host of talented Americans are eager to take an important middle-distance test as most of them prepare for fall marathons, of which
there are plenty, with all six World Marathon Majors events taking place over a six-week period between September 26 and November 7.”
 
This will be the third time one or more of the USATF 10 Mile Championships have been hosted by CUCB alongside the traditional international competition: the women’s championships were part of the 2013 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile, with Janet Bawcom winning the title in 53:28 while placing fourth overall. A year later in 2014, race organizers hosted both the men’s and women’s championships. Christo Landry (46:41) was the first American to cross the finish line—in sixth place overall—while Bawcom repeated as the U.S. women’s champion by placing second overall in 52:12. Both of Bawcom’s times established American records at the time.
 
Keira D’Amato broke Bawcom’s American Record last fall at the Up Dawg Ten Mile, running 51:23 in a small invitational race organized by the Cherry Blossom Race Committee specifically for her to chase Bawcom’s record. D’Amato’s effort was recently verified as a women’s only World Record by the Association of Road Racing Statisticians as well. (ARRS is the only organization keeping world records at the 10-mile distance.)
 
D’Amato will be joined on the starting line by two American women who have broken 53 minutes for 10 miles: Jordan Hasay (52:49) and Emma Bates (52:51). Three other Americans have run 54:00 or faster: Natosha Rogers (53:45), Diane Nukuri (53:56), and Annie Frisbie (54:00).
 
On the men’s side, Futsum Zienasellassie will be defending the USATF 10 Mile Championship he won in Minneapolis in 2019 (the last time American runners competed for this title, thanks to Covid-19). His winning time of 46:55 is one of four sub-47:00 marks among the American men entered in the race. Chris Derrick boasts the fastest personal best (46:53), which he ran at CUCB in 2018 when he was top American and fifth overall. Abbabiya Simbassa ran 46:57 to place second behind Zienasellassie in Minneapolis in 2019, and Kiya Dandena ran 46:58 in 2017 at CUCB. The current pending men’s American record is 45:54 set by Galen Rupp last fall. Rupp’s time bettered Greg Meyer’s time of 46:13 from the 1983 Cherry Blossom Ten Mile.
 
Here’s a complete listing of elite American athletes who have confirmed their entry into the 2021 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile, with personal bests noted in parentheses:
 
Women:
 
Keira D’Amato (51:23)
Jordan Hasay (52:49)
Emma Bates (52:51)
Natosha Rogers (53:45)
Diane Nukuri (53:56)
Annie Frisbie (54:00)
Bria Wetsch (54:14)
Susanna Sullivan (54:22)
Bethany Sachtleben (54:42)
Grayson Murphy (54:51)
Carrie Verdon (56:57)
Danielle Shanahan (31:22.9 10K)
Amy Davis (32:13 10K)
Abbie McNulty (33:07 10K)
Stephanie Bruce (1:09:55 half marathon)
Nell Rojas (1:10:45 half marathon)
 
Men:
 
Chris Derrick (46:53)
Futsum Zienasellassie (46:55)
Abbabiya Simbassa (46:57)
Kiya Dandena (46:58)
Augustus Maiyo (47:05)
Elkanah Kibet (47:15)
Girma Mecheso (47:22)
Noah Droddy (47:28)
Louis Serafini. (47:35)
Emmanuel Bor (47:39)
Reed Fischer (47:50)
Shadrack Biwott (47:53)
John Raneri (47:53)
Tyler McAndless (47:56)
Dhruvil. Patel (48:37)
Frank Lara (48:37)
Joel Reichow (48:41)
Alex Monroe (48:57)
Willie Milam (49:10)
Robert Brandt (27:39.2 10K)
Brendan Gregg (44:25 15K)
Reid Buchanan (44:40 15K)
Emmanuel Roudolff (1:04:08 half marathon)
 
Of course, with almost four weeks to go until race day, these fields are subject to change. A complete roster of all invited runners will be released on Wednesday, September 8.
 
The 2021 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Runs mark the 20th year of title sponsorship by Credit Union Miracle Day. Since 2002, over $10 million has been raised for the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, including $439,000 in 2020. Of that $439,000, $66,000 came from runners donating their entry fes instead of asking for a refund when race weekend in our Nation's Capital was wiped out by Covid-19.
The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile, organized by Cherry Blossom, Inc., a 501c(3) chapter of the Road Runners Club of America, 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 North America. About one-third of the funds raised support Washington, DC’s own Children’s National (“Children’s Hospital”). The event also funds the Road Runners Club of America’s “Roads Scholar” program, 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 in partnership with CUNA Mutual Group, PCSU and CO-OP Financial Services, is the title sponsor of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run, 5K Run-Walk and Kids’ Run. Additional sponsorship comes from ASICS, Garmin Gatorade, Medstar Health and Potomac River Running.
 
The event is a proud member of the PRRO Circuit (PRRO.org), a series of major non-marathon prize money road races in Tampa, FL; Washington, DC; Spokane, WA; and Utica, NY. The circuit is committed to a drug-free sport and funds drug testing at all circuit events in compliance with the standards of international and U.S. drug testing authorities.
 
In addition to being sanctioned by USA Track & Field and the Road Runners Club of America, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run has earned Gold Level Inspire Certification from the Council for Responsible Sport in recognition of its legacy of commitment to sustainability and thoughtful resource management. To learn more, visit www.cherryblossom.org and follow the event on social media @CUCB and #CUCB2021.


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