About Cross Country

Claremont High School Cross-Country Program Mission Statement

To provide a spirited environment that fosters teamwork, commitment, hard work, responsibility, goal setting, and a healthy lifestyle which, in turn, will develop young men and women who have learned the life skills necessary to reach their full potential as individuals.

THE SPORT: Cross country is a team running sport. Quite possibly the purest of all commonly contested sports, it requires only shoes, shorts, shirt and a running surface. It is an activity as old as history and can be practiced and enjoyed for a lifetime. It is a sport to be enjoyed for its own sake; glory and recognition come primarily from within the runner, not from outside. High schools in our area race at either 3 miles or 5000 meters (3.1 miles).

DEFINING SUCCESS: "Success is peace of mind that is the direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming." --John Wooden

Wooden is famous for his achievements as a basketball coach at UCLA, but his definition applies just as well to the sport of cross country and the philosophy of our program at Claremont High School. We emphasize that, for each runner, the real contest is striving to reach her or his personal best, and that this endeavor is totally within each athlete's own control.

GOVERNING BODIES: Since the Fall of 2014, CHS competes in the Palomares League. The schools in the league are Alta Loma, Ayala, Bonita, Claremont, Colony and Glendora. In California, the California Inter-scholastic Federation (CIF) is the governing body, and the Southern Section (our section) is one of 10 state sections that set their own rules for the conduct of the sport. In the United States, the national governing body is USA Track & Field (USAT&F) which includes the National Federation of State High School Associations. Internationally, the sport governed by the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF).

RACING & SCORING: A team consists of 7 individuals. The team score is the sum of the places of the first 5 finishers -- though a team's sixth and seventh runners may displace the other team's scoring runners. Low score wins. In invitational races, there is no limit on the number of members on a team. Further, in some invitationals, the number of scoring places varies. In league competition we field five teams: Boys Frosh/Soph, Girls and Boys JV, and Girls and Boys Varsity.

LEAGUE & CIF COMPETITION: The Palomares League will conduct one league meet and a league final where all the participating schools compete at the same time. At the first league meet, teams will earn 1 point for every team they beat. At the league final, teams will earn 2 points for every team they beat. The total points earned from all three league meets will be used to determine the final league standings. However, the top three teams at the final league meet will advance to CIF regardless of their final league standings. In CIF, schools are divided according to size. CHS competes in Division 2 in CIF, although the Palomares League has teams in Divisions 1, 2, and 3. The top 16 teams from each division at CIF Prelims (top 4 from 4 heats) will compete in CIF Finals for a CIF Championship. In addition, the top 8 teams from each division in the CIF Finals will qualify for the State Finals in Fresno. Individual athletes whose teams do not qualify for the next round can qualify individually by placing high in their races.


The varsity letter should represent a respectable athletic achievement at the high school level. Therefore, on the Claremont High School Cross-Country team, the varsity letter will be earned and not simply handed out. The following guidelines will be used to determine whether a runner earns a varsity letter.

Four points earned in Varsity competitions.

1) 1pt awarded to the top 7 times per race/meet

2) Coaches Discretion

a) Finish the season in good standing

b) Finish the season scholastically eligible

c) Show up to the awards ceremony to receive their award

d) Turn in all uni checked out to them

e) Pay for lost equipment