Thursday, April 24, 2008


All right, let’s play a little trivia. I came across an interesting tidbit last night when I was writing a little recap of the women’s trials. I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere else, so I thought it’d make for a fun trivia question. I'll provide the answer tomorrow.

If you look at this year’s top-3 finishers, what is unique about their performances when you compare them to the women’s trials in 2004?

Hint: focus on the top-5 finishers from 2004.

While you think about that, here’s a recap of the rest of my trip. I flew into Boston Saturday afternoon and after dinner walked to Fenway Park. I didn’t plan on scalping tickets, but was drawn inside by the mystique of Fenway Park. I almost had as much fun watching the fans as I did the game. They’re definitely a unique bunch. They’re very vocal and social and aren’t afraid to throw the F-bomb around within seconds of meeting someone new.

Sunday was obviously the Olympic Trials Marathon. It’s kind of funny that there wasn’t a single word about the trials mention on any local TV station. However, that didn’t stop spectators from coming out of the woodwork. The scene along the course was absolutely spectacular – far more spectators than in New York City for the men’s trials in November. Although, I’d still put the men’s race ahead of the women’s in terms of drama for actually making the Olympic team.

Watching the strong Minnesota contingent was awesome. A couple ran PRs, some ran average, and a few struggled more than I would have liked to have seen. But that seems to be the case with every marathon; some friends run great, some average, and some struggle.

Speaking of that, I have to give a shout out to Thea and Phillip from P2. After running 3:04 in the heat at last year’s TCM, Thea shaved 7 more minutes from her PR by running 2:57:31 (1:30/1:27 splits). I don’t know what Phillip’s PR was prior to Monday, but I know it wasn’t below 3 hours. He busted through the 3 hour barrier with a 2:55:54.

I don’t know if I’m getting sentimental in my old age or if I was just running so slow, but during Monday’s race I was able to appreciate some of the sites along the way – at least more than during my other previous Boston attempts. And maybe my memory is just fading, but I swear the crowds were much thicker than 2002 and 2004.

As I was thinking about the crowds from the Red Sox game, trials, and Boston Marathon, it dawned on me that they’ve VERY different than fans in the Midwest. I think Midwesterners watch sporting events to be entertained, while East Coasters really become part of the event itself.

Here we clap and say, “Nice job” as the runners go by.

There they clap, scream, and make as much noise as possible to encourage the runners on.

Here we’re more concerned with cheering for people we know.

There they don’t care if they know anyone, they cheer equally for each runner.

The weekend included some celebrity (in the runner-sense) sightings as well, including; Ryan Hall, Alan Webb, Uta Pippig, Scott Douglas, Frank Shorter, Steve Jones, Sonia O’ Sullivan, and The Hoyts.

Finally, here’s an article regarding cheating to get into the Boston Marathon.

Dang, this would have been a great quote of the day on Sunday. That brings up a couple of questions. How did they make their judgement? And did anyone ever get pulled from the start?

“No weaklings will be permitted to start in the marathon tomorrow.”Boston Herald, April 18, 1900

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

They were all women :)