The Inside Loop: February 2013

Tom Byrnes and friends PPTCer Kay Downer wanted to let everyone know that she'll be moving to North Carolina and wanted to thank all the PPTCers who may have joined her in the park for her many lovely Saturday morning runs as well as her occasional speed workouts and races. Being part of PPTC will go down as one of her favorite memories of living in Brooklyn. "I will miss the group's enthusiasm and support." What Kay doesn't realize yet is that like the Eagles sang in their song Hotel California, ".....you can check out but you can never leave...''

A shout out to Lynda Mules, Chloe Manchester, Tina-Marie Rosenberger, Karen Ziga, and Lynda Mules for to teaming up for the NYC Ekiden! Their team the PPTC Cherry Blossoms won the 4-Person Female division and had a great (but chilly, damp and muddy) time competing together, cheering for PPTC teammates, and hanging out with the other runners. Lynda thought the trophies were pretty cool and was wowed with the long-sleeved tech shirt that actually fit! Chloe and Tina-Marie sported their PPTC singlets for the very first time in this race. There's more than magic in the PPTC colors.

Bravo and 73 cheers for Rich Weaver. Although the call-in for the NYFD to standby in case the 73 birthday candle birthday cake thing got out of hand was summarily dismissed as a false alarm, PPTC wishes Rich all the best of health and happiness. Unfortunately this birthday does not put Rich in a new age category.

There's more than some talk about a day trip to Boston mid April to cheer on our PPTC runners at the 2013 Boston Marathon? So far the interested parties are Selina, Patty C, and Patty P, Yvetta, and Yvetta's pooch serving as the PPTC mascot. The group just might be called ... "Qaptain and the Patties" but remember, however you get there , it will certainly be the more the merrier.

Exciting news! Word is that the 2013 Brooklyn Marathon garnered the Travlete Reader's Choice Award for "Best Marathon." This is a big deal. The competition included some pretty heavy hitters: Boston, Philly, Chicago, and Lost Dutchman in AZ. The Brooklyn Marathon wins, this is an op to show the world what we're made of.

When Tom Byrnes sported a Brooklyn Half Marathon NYRRC 1991 tee shirt at his local Planet Fitness, a younger college runner on an adjacent treadmill noticed and commented, "You ran that race when I wasn’t even born yet...."

PPTC ''oh no's'' go out to Patricia Meany after having been struck and injured by a Parks Department vehicle on Tuesday January 8th on the inside loop roadway. What added to the misery of the moment was the fact that after the timely 911 call, EMS drivers couldn’t locate her on the inside loop roadway and take her to the Methodist Hospital. We might know the park like the back of our hand but unfortunately the same isn’t true for all of the city's services. A NYPD officer did come to her rescue though and stayed with her the entire time she was down and until the EMS truck finally arrived.

PPTC laments the loss of any indoor track meet this winter season at Madison Square Garden but looks forward to seeing our male and female relay teams at the 2013 Millrose Games at the 168th Street and B'way Armory in Washington Heights in February. Coach Tony Watson is spearheading the PPTC drive to get teams on the track there so if it's going to be, Coach Tony's going to help make it happen. PPTC's Master’s Women (Marianne, Lynda, Zoe, Valarie) ran 4:57 in the 4 x 400 on Thursday January 17th at the NYRRC Thursday Night at the Races at Manhattan's 168th Street and B'way Armory and qualified to compete at the 2013 Millrose Game there! PPTC's Master’s Men (Tom G., Justin, Scott, Michael A.) ran 4:36. PPTC will know if the men's team is competing at Millrose after the qualification period ends on February 3.Thanks to Patty C., Yvetta, Evan, Clarence and Mac among others for trekking up to Washington Heights on Thursday to cheer PPTC on! Thanks to Coach Tony Watson for putting the PPTC teams together and training these fast feet for this competition. Coach will be getting the PPTC fast feet on the track for both the Masters Men as well as Masters Women 4x400m Relays.

Maria Green (US Army) is looking at retirement possibilities this year. Hey, when one window closes another opens so we hope she can enjoy the 'fresh air'!

Thanks to Mickey Neuman for sending a copy of the late and great Eddie Coyle's road running race result clip that appeared in the Daily News sport section way back when for one of Harry Murphy's 3.35 mile Handicap races on New Year's day. Back in the day as some of us can remember Harry's 'sweetest' handicap was ten minutes, no matter how many diseases and operations you may have claimed to Harry you had just had. Forged doctor's notes may have worked for the payroll secretary at work but they certainly didn’t float for Harry.

PPTC sympathies to Harold and Gwelda Fairweather and family on the death of Harold's sister. Her name was Daphne Fairweather Ferrel, 87 years old, and she passed away on December 22nd, 2012 after a short illness. Because of the holidays, many of her relatives were able to get to Belize in time for the funeral services on January 5th, 2013.

An email to Keith Williams's email the start of 2013 returned the message that he was in Ethiopia and would be returning mid January. There have to be lots of interesting stories wrapped around that adventure.

PPTC's congrats to Marvlyn Baptiste's for her hard work and efforts which paid off on October 12, 2012 when she received her degree in Executive Master of Public Health from Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health majoring in Health Policy and Management. Congrats Marvlyn!

Thanks to Dennis Sivack for pointing out that Millrose Great John Thomas died on Jan. 15th 2013, his obit ran in the Tuesday, Jan. 22 New York Times. At one of the Millrose Games back in the day Dennis' USADA assignment to notify and escort one of the finishers in the high jump back to the USADA site.. It was John Thomas as the Official who directed Dennis to the finisher and Dennis feels this was an honor. Among other things, John was an Eagle Scout and a lifelong friend of his rival, Valery Brumel. On another occasion, I myself will never forget the time Cuban high jumper Olympian Javier Sotomayor approached John on the infield at Madison Square Garden at the Millrose Games and in his halting English recognized John as one of his all time idols. John turned to me to ask if I could translate his response but I wisely deferred to Javier's coach and translator. Maybe you just had to be there, as they say.

Tom Byrnes