The Ashton Cross Country Course is the home of training and competition for the The University of Iowa men’s and women’s cross country squads. The course is located west of the former facility, Finkbine Golf Course, and adjacent to the University’s West Campus, which includes the Athletic Hall of Fame and soccer fields. It can accommodate races of 4,000, 5,000, 6,000, 8,000, and 10,000 meters.
The course boasts a rolling terrain with an outstanding rhythm for running. The Hawkeye cross country squads have the advantage of a large grass area for training and racing. Course features include a 2,000-meter perimeter and a layout that allows spectators to view the entire race, from start to finish, from one vantage point. The first coed event to be held on the course was the Iowa Invitational on Aug. 29, 2003.
The leadership gift for the course was made by former Hawkeyes Bill and Jim Ashton. Bill, of Davenport, IA, graduated from the University’s College of Engineering in 1962, and earned his master’s degree in 1963. Jim, a 1964 University of Iowa College of Engineering graduate, currently resides in Dallas, Texas. The Ashton brothers both lettered in cross country under former Hawkeye men’s coach, the late Francis X. Cretzmeyer, and made the lead gift for the course in his honor.