The Inside Loop: January 2013

Tom Byrnes and friends Thanks to Chris O'Brien and Gary Wang for their shoutouts to former teammate and PPTC's good friend CoCo Dartigues for her amazing 3:07:23 run at the La Rochelle Marathon in France in late November. A 50 minute PR in only her second marathon - amazing! Seems like many of us had read about her training injuries, sore ankles, a sprain here, soreness there, and yet the day of the race, CoCo slammed it!

Lots and lots of other impressive running times these days on this side of the Atlantic. Yves Roger speaks for PPTC with congrats to Nicole Importico with her impressive 3:36 and a PR at Harrisburg. PPTC also congrats Karen Ziga on her 2:59 for 26.2 at Philly on November 18th and Selina Rutowitz breaking four hours there as well. ''A very well-done'' to Mike Goettig and Marianne Van Ooij, first PPTC male and female finishers at the Turkey Trot with lots of praise to PPYRC / PPTC 's Owen Hassler, age 9, for his 71st place overall finish at the Turkey Trot.

Stephen Blacklocks went to the Xterra Trail Running World Championships on Oahu Hawaii the first weekend in December and made it into the highlights video! Stephen in his PPTC singlet appears at about 5.30 into this video.

He says this is without a doubt the toughest race he'd ever done and also the most beautiful. At one point the trail turned a corner to reveal a view of the ocean and islands and mountains so amazing that he blurted out to no-one in particular, "Wow, how pretty!" He first ran the Trail Running World Championships in 2009 and won the bronze medal in his age group. With the advantage of moving up an age group, and better training, he took silver this time. "I went to Hawaii with hopes of winning the world title in my age group, but finished a long way down on the winner''. For Stephen 2012's been a fantastic year: 5th in his AG at the Cross-Country Nationals in February, winning the AG title at the US Trail Running Championships in Oregon in June, and now second at Worlds. His racing year ended on Sunday December 9th in Central Park with the Ekiden.

In thinking Turkey Trot 2012, PPTC thanks go out to Rich and Kathleen Weaver for all the time and energy that went into getting the volunteers out and about. According to Mike Ring, the not so magic number of participants who toed the start line this year was 2238! Rhony Dostaly and Linus Ly also deserve a thanks for their sending along pics of PPTC at the race to PPTC's Facebook page as well as to PPTC's Open Forum.

With PPTC 's website's race results section under construction, I'd like to say ''go there'' to check out more PPTC member results but it might be best to put that on your list of 'things to do'. As they say in Jamaica, the island, not the neighborhood, the PPTC race results section, ''soon come..."

In the meantime though, thanks to Alexis Davidson for alerting us to site with which we can find out the time for anyone who has a run a major marathon, just have to have the spelling of their name correct.

Keith Williams will apparently be taking the baton and leading off PPTC's E-newsletter, Around the Park. Gone are the days of coordinating the pages, stapling them, applying the address labels, and then schlepping the bundles off to the post office for their mailing and delivery. Looking back to the days when former PPTC president Bobby Fisher would type up club news on sheets of paper, usually in a color that Staples would have a lot of since no one else would buy it, one sided, then stapled together, a schlep to the post office, yes, we most certainly have come a long long way............

Lots of nice words about Artie Gonzalez in a recent edition of the Fordham Alumni newsletter.

Thanks to Harold and Gwelda Fairweather's continuing help with gathering and then sending gently used donated running shoes, clothes, and gear to Ian Grey for his use with his runner groups in Belize. Interestingly Ian mentions in recent email that there are no running stores there so running stuff is hard to come by. Thank you PPTC!

The latest run of Tony Watson's Speed workouts are underway and starting the first week of December, the Tuesday and Thursday groups again saw the light of the Prospect Park Armory's indoor track for sessions 3 through 10. Session number 2 found Thursday night's group doing hill repeats on the park's southwest side being pushed up the hill by the rising full moon. Maybe you just had to be there but it seemed to many that the light of the rising full moon reflecting on the lake made the work of running the uphill repeats just a bit more bearable, especially after sixth.......

Many thanks to Lynda Mules for handling PPTC clothing issues. And as much as sporting PPTC's red and white singlets and tee shirts on race day may seem of little value to some, there's Jeannie Im who attributes her recent six minute marathon PR to the fact that in previous races she did not wear a PPTC garment. Some say there's magic in them threads! Ask Jeannie for the details.

Running along Prospect Park West in November it was my good fortune to run some with Cecil Bakalour and talk about memories of his training for and medalling at Iron Man Hawaii back in the day. And just when you think some one has fallen off the radar, some days later in early December who appears on the inside loop but PPTC's former 'morning mayor', Richie Goldstein and his lovely wife Leona. Not on his way to visit the site of PS 154 in Windsor Terrace where he served as principal for some years, he and Leona were just out and about catching the early winter sights and sounds of Prospect Park.

If you're enamored of the Park Slope Food Co-Op, pay attention to on-going plans for a Windsor Terrace Food Co-Op. With the close of the Key Food supermarket on Prospect Avenue, the fresh food needs for many who would consider joining a food co-op closer to the southwest side of Prospect Park might make this an interesting endeavor.

New Year's Running Resolutions? Made any? Going to train the same but expecting different results?

Hmmmmmmmmm, see you on the roads.

Tom Byrnes