The Bellevue Breeze
The Breeze (or Bellevue Track Club) has been around as a summer track club
for about ten years. Again this fall, we are extending the club into the cross country season.
Athletes have an opportunity to run and compete in meets from September
Our Cross Country coaches
Craig Christians – Coach Christians has been the assistant cross
country coach at Bellevue West High School for nine years. He is also a track assistant at West and
has coached distance runners for the Breeze Track Club for three
seasons. He has been a runner himself
for 25 years and continues to train and compete.
Elementary and Middle School -- If you have enjoyed running cross
country at some of Bellevue West’s events, here is your opportunity to expand
your involvement. If your school doesn't offer cross country, then running
for the Breeze is your chance to get involved in the sport before you begin
High School -- If you don't want your cross country season to end
after your last school meet, and desire to compete with other runners from
Nebraska on the same team, contact us when your season is over.
2002 Season Age Divisions
and Race Lengths
Young Men/Women -- born in 1984 or 1985 -- 5000 meters
Intermediate Boys/Girls -- born in 1986 or 1987 -- 5000 meters
Youth Boys/Girls -- born in 1988 or 1989 -- 4000 meters
Midget Boys/Girls -- born in 1990 or 1991 -- 3000 meters
Bantam Boys/Girls -- born in 1992 or later -- 3000 meters
Meet and Practice
There are two basic parts of the meet season. The first part is a series of
meets that are sponsored by Omaha-area high schools including two at Bellevue
West. These meets are usually 8th grade and under, with awards given at most
of them. The second part is the Age Group and Junior Olympic competitions
where you compete only against athletes of your own age. Awards are given at
all of these meets, with the opportunity to advance to Regional and National
competition. The number of meets each athlete enters and participates in is
up to the individual, although a few meets require the athlete to place so
high at a previous qualifying meet before they may enter and compete. Note:
High school athletes may not compete or practice with the Breeze until their
school season is over.
Practice will be held at Bellevue West High School, near the intersection of
Cornhusker Road and the Kennedy Freeway.
We will meet on the West track at 5:45 p.m. There will generally be
two practices each week. See the Breeze
Calendar for the most up-to-date practice schedule. The coaches realize
that families will sometimes have schedule conflicts and there will be times
when an athlete must miss practice. Our expectation is that kids will take
the responsibility for running on their own when they are unable to get to
club practice. Cross country is a sport which demands diligence and
perseverance. Therefore, it is expected that kids run on the "off days"
when there is no scheduled Breeze practice.
The Breeze are sponsored by the City of Bellevue’s Recreation
Department. Membership for the 2002
cross country season is $10 if you are a Bellevue resident or $15 if you live outside the city limits, which includes a Breeze T-shirt. You may register at the Recreation Department's office at the Reed Center, 1200 Lord Blvd. in Bellevue. Members must
obtain a USA Track and Field membership is they are going to compete in any
Junior Olympic meets following the high school season. The cost of this membership is $15 but if
you purchased one for Breeze summer track in 2002, you do not need a new one. There
may be additional fees for entry into meets but these are generally
inexpensive. There are travel expenses depending on how much you want to
travel for competition. The coaching staff encourages all newcomers to attend
enough practices to make sure cross country is something they want to do
before paying the membership fee and officially joining.
Other Cross Country
This fall, the Breeze will participate in several USATF-sanctioned meets for
ages 18 and under (see the Breeze Calendar for a complete meet schedule). Those
runners in the 8th grade and below will also have the opportunity to compete
in additional Omaha-area junior high meets.
There are no tryouts to join the Breeze. You don't have to have championship
talent to participate, just the desire to experience distance running and the
willingness to work towards improvement. Our coaches will determine your
current ability and fitness level and prescribe workout goals accordingly.
Personal goal-setting and improvement is always emphasized over place-finish
Participation in cross country improves athletic ability and endurance for
other sports, including basketball, baseball, and soccer.