Co-Founder Steve Taylor Receives 2021 MVP Sports Tourism Award
Steve Taylor is awarded the 2021 MVP Sports Tourism Award by Richmond Region Tourism.
**Artwork by Hamilton Glass**
(May 7, 2021)
Richmond, VA – Collegiate Running Association Co-Founder, Steve Taylor has been honored by Richmond Region Tourism with the 2021 MVP Sports Tourism Award for his contributions and service to tourism through the sport growth of cross country in the greater Richmond Region. Taylor's efforts were recognized Friday morning during the Visit Richmond virtual Annual Awards to celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week.
The MVP Sports Tourism Award is given annually to an individual or organization who has made major contributions and/or has been of service to the growth of sports tourism in the Richmond Region.
In support of Richmond Region Tourism, Taylor has been instrumental in promoting and soliciting cross country events to come to the Richmond Region. His design layout of the "Upper Course" in Hanover County's Pole Green Park has attracted many of the state's most prestigious high school cross country events, along with several college conference championship events including the 2013, 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2020 Atlantic 10 Conference championship races. The recent 2019 NIRCA National Cross Country Championships attracted nearly 1,800 college students from across the U.S. This fall the 2021 NJCAA D1 and D2 Cross Country National Championships will hit the trails of Pole Green Park followed by their Half Marathon National Championships which will start and finish in Henrico's growing Dorey Park.
Taylor was instrumental in securing the 2023 and 2024 USA Track & Field Cross Country Championships to be held in Pole Green Park in partnership with USA Track & Field Virginia, Richmond Region Tourism and the Collegiate Running Association. These championships will mark the first time in history the U.S. Championships will be held in Virginia. The 2023 USA Track & Field Cross Country Championships will take place on Feb. 4 and the 2024 event will be held on Feb. 3.
A Saint Marys, West Virginia native he is the co-founder of the Collegiate Running Association, along with being the University of Richmond Spiders head cross country coach while contributing on several levels to long distance running within the U.S. In addition to years as an active athlete where he represented the U.S. in the 1991 World Championships (marathon) and 1991 and 1995 World Marathon Cup, he has spent decades as a prominent coach and avid supporter of running events throughout the U.S.
Taylor is a forward-thinker in expanding men's and women's long distance running. In 2013, he co-founded the Collegiate Running Association, which has resulted in thousands of dollars in prize money going directly to college student-athletes. The first CRA champion, Paul Chelimo, went on to win the silver medal in the 2016 Olympic 5,000m while representing team USA. Dedicated to helping aspiring athletes in the sport, Taylor leads in the creation of competitions that specialize in prize money for college students. In 2018 he was honored by USA Track and Field (USATF) with the H. Browning Ross Long Distance Running Merit Award for his contributions and service to the sport of long distance running in the U.S.
MAJOR CROSS COUNTRY EVENTS HOSTED/TO BE HOSTED in the Richmond Region at Pole Green Park:
February 3, 2024 - USATF National Cross Country Championships
February 4, 2023 - USATF National Cross Country Championships
November 6, 2021- NJCAA National Cross Country Championships
March 3, 2021- Atlantic 10 Conference Championship (Postponed until spring 2021 due to COVID)
October 3, 2020 - Pole Green Park 5K
November 7, 2020- NIRCA National Cross Country Championships (Postponed due to COVID)
November 9, 2019- NIRCA National Cross Country Championships
October 27, 2018- Atlantic 10 Conference Championship
October 13, 2018- MileStat.com XC Invitational
September 1, 2018- Pole Green Park 5K/USATF-Virginia Association Championship
November 18, 2017- USATF-Virginia Jr Olympics Championship
October 14, 2017- MileStat.com XC Invitational
September 2, 2017- Pole Green Park 5K/USATF-Virginia Association Championship
October 29, 2016- Atlantic 10 Conference Championship
October 15, 2016- MileStat.com XC Invitational
September 3, 2016- Pole Green Park 5K/USATF-Virginia Association Championship
October 31, 2015- Atlantic 10 Conference Championship
October 17, 2015- Cross Country Only National Invitational
October 17, 2015- MileStat.com XC Invitational
September 5, 2015- USATF-Virginia Association Championship
October 17, 2014- Cross Country Only National Invitational
August 29, 2014- USATF-Virginia Association Championship
November 2, 2013- Atlantic 10 Conference Championship
November, 2008- USATF Jr Olympics National Championship
2003 through 2020- USATF-Virginia Jr Olympics Championship
2003 through 2020- Countless HS meets including Regional and District Championships