Over 10,000 runners compete in cross country championship race in Van Cortlandt Park

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Over 10,000 runners from the Northeast battled it out Saturday for a place in the Foot Locker Cross Country National Finals despite the chilly weather. 

It's the longest-running cross country race in the U.S., entering its 41st year. The competitors ran the 5,000-meter mixed terrain in the park.

Participant Adam Ocasio says the frigid weather added to the difficulty of the hilly race. “It’s very difficult to make it up those hills, especially with the challenging weather right now. It’s really cold. And the wind up there is really hard and difficult,” he says.

Jack Sears says his reason for doing the challenging race was beyond winning a medal. He says he’s following in the footsteps of his grandfather, who won the race 55 years ago.

“It feels good to stand on the same ground he stood on and race where he got to race,” Sears says.

Runners tell News 12 that whether you come in first or last, getting out there is all that matters.

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