Once in a while a coach will tap an athlete on the shoulder, look him in the eye and suggest he could break a record. Usually it’s not a world record.
Hal Lieberman got the tap from Coach Devon in the fall, suggesting he help put together a team to go after the 70+ 4 x 800 indoor world record, 12:09, set by an American team in 2008. Four guys running 3:00 sounded doable to Hal, and Sid Howard quickly joined the team, as did former club president Norm Goluskin.
Finding a fourth was a challenge, and after losing a prospect to a torn meniscus, the team took to the internet. There they found Dominic Rappazzo of Albany, whose recent 68 second 400 stood out. Like Michelangelo’s claim of not being a painter, Dominic’s insistence on being just a sprinter was put to rest at a TNAR when he ran a careful 2:58. The quartet was complete. Dominic is not a CPTC member.
Devon helped with some 800 workouts, including a solid 2 x (800 400 200) done twice. The first, says Norm, ‘told me that I had a long way to go,” and the second, completed solidly, told him that he was ready to go. A sharpening workout of 2x (4 x 200) with just 30 seconds rest was the final brushstroke on the canvas.
The relay team targeted the re-scheduled TNAR on March 5 as go time, and Devon helped with the required preparations for a record attempt. Institutional memory helped, since Norm and Sid were part of a 2002 team that set and still holds the 60-64 4 x 800 indoor record. Automatic timing must be set up, other teams had to be engaged, and the attempt had to be declared. “The NYRR was very accommodating,” Sid said later.
While everyone was fit and ready, the running gods still demanded a sacrifice, and visited on Norm a foot injury just a few days before the race. But like Michelangelo on Julius II’s scaffolding, it was too late to reconsider.
The goal was to average three minutes per leg. On paper, it wasn’t a stretch considering the athletes, but on race day, with people hurt and running out of their specialty… anything could happen.
Eight hundred meter specialist Hal took it out in a solid 2:49, quickly buying a cushion for the team. Sprinter Dom glided around in 2:57 and handed it to the wounded Norman. The team held its breath, since Norm was even that evening unsure of his solidity. But he got around four times in 3:09 and the team knew at that point, with the great Sid Howard holding the baton, that the record was theirs. “I knew Sid would give it everything he had,” said Hal afterwards. Sid brought it home in 11:47, beating the record by 22 seconds.
The 4 x 8 was the orangest of all events this winter, as the team of Jonevan Hornsby, Andrew Hogue, David Peters, and Neil Fitzgerald also set an indoor world record this year (in the 35-39) with their 8:04.75.
For most of us, the history of the club is a meaningful part of our running. As Hal wrote after the race:
In 10 years or less there will be another attempt at the record by CPTC, and then in 20 years yet another attempt. We want to be an inspiration to all of the up and coming masters and younger runners. In fact, that is a great motivator for us.
(Photo: Sue Pearsall)
From Kristan Dietz of the Open:
Sorry it took me a few days, but here is the NYC Half Recap. Despite the cold conditions, there were plenty of PR’s and great performances, so let’s get right to them.
Leading the team was Jane Vongvorachoti with her 25th place finish. Jane’s time of 1:17:41 was a 37 second PR and 2 minutes faster than her NYC Half time last year. Jane loved the CPTC support all over the course. Check out her pre and post-race interviews where she gave a shout out to CPTC (Around the 1:00 and 13:56 minute marks).
Following Jane was Alex Brown in 1:22:42, a PR by 2 minutes and 45 seconds. Our scoring team was rounded out by Allison Lind in 1:22:54, Kate Pfeffer in 1:23:18, and Jacy Kruzel in 1:23:22. NYRR loves taking photos of Jacy, because this mid-race picture was included in their Local Heroes album.
We had so many teammates run the half Sunday. Below are all of the performances:
Alysia Dusseau- 1:23:29, a personal best of a minute and twenty six seconds. Alysia thought it was cold but better too cold than too hot!
Veronica Jackson- 1:27:52
Steph Yang- 1:28:37
Grace White- 1:29:16- her second fastest half marathon.
Ambreleah Dusseau- 1:31:21, a PR by one minute and 32 seconds!
Megan Kretz- 1:31:39- Only 10 seconds off her PR and her fastest half since 2011! Megan also witnessed 3 NYRR volunteers tackle a bandit in the final .1 of the race, which caused her to kick so she wouldn’t get caught in the scuffle.
Meredith Kennedy- 1:33:36
Nicole Kiernan- 1:33:48- a 3 minute PR!
Megan Manfred- 1:34:55
Anna Fyodorova- 1:35:34
Sarah Abdallah- 1:36:43
Dani Sturtz- 1:38:32
Michelle Bauko Kaicher- 1:55:36
Noted race spectator/cheerer Nicole Falcaro was near a water stop and found it interesting that some racers “would just let gravity take over after drinking from the water cups, while others would throw it in the air like New Year’s confetti!” Nicole also ran a half this weekend, finishing in a time 1:27:36 at the Rock N Roll USA Half in DC, her first attempt at the distance. This gives me hope that I can one day convert her from the track to long roads.
Congratulations to everyone to raced. Thank you to everyone who braved the cold to cheer as well. I sound like a broken record, but if you haven’t let me know that you plan to race Scotland 10K (which is still open) or the Brooklyn Half, please do so. The Mini 10K has also opened.
From Andrew Moore of the M 50+:
Sunday saw an impressive start to the season for our 50+ road crew at the Coogan’s 5K. We came away with a solid first place finish for the 50-59 age group with a strong roster and some great performances.
We had eight team competitors and several high place finishes on the hilly course, including Stuart Calderwood 2nd place 50-54 (18:17), Alan Ruben 1st place 55-59 (18:48), Chris Donnelly 7th place 50-54 (19:21), and Arthur Palmer 5th place 55-59 (20:31). Tim Smith must have been arm in arm with Art, as he was also in at 20:31, followed by Budd Heyman (21:54), Dennis O’Donnell (22:00) and Oscar Garcia (22:19). That’s a great showing, especially for this early in the season. Good job and congrats to all.
Next up is the Scotland 10K Run on April 6th.
From Hank Schiffman of the 60+:
Yessiree, we are off to a very good start in the 2013 NYRR Club Competition for Men 60+; 2nd place to Taconic Road Runners has become customary and is not shabby. We bested 3rd place Greater NY by 3 and a half minutes.
Cold, with both a headwind and a climb right out of the box, in the box, and out of the box, our guys were less than a minute and a half out of first place. Our youngster, 60 year old Phil Vasquez, ran 22:29 and 12th out of 101 men 60-64 as our third scorer; nice legs Phil! Clearing the way for Phil at 21:48 was our reliable trooper, Chris Neuhoff, 9th out of the same 101 guys and just a hair beneath 75% effort. Dusted out of the podium by one second, and 17 seconds slower than last year, I humbly accepted 4th place in the same group, grateful to have enough gas in the tank to put the pedal down to the line. I fed on the goodness of sharing this event with all of our most enthusiastic CPTC teammates.
Backing up our scorers, any of which could have been a scorer but for a better or worse day than any of us, was the multi-talented Dan Molloy in 23:13, the comeback wonder Kevin McGuire in 23:28, the unflappable Dave Delano in 26:50 and the man who always has a smile on his face, Fred Trilli in 27:56. We all ran above 60%. Proud is the best word I can have to share the orange singlet with you all.
The older I get, the slower I run but the more I appreciate the fellowship of our group effort and sharing the enthusiasm before, during and after these events. Coach Tony’s voice pushing me on was at least as good as a tailwind. We did well.
Next, we will double the distance at the Scotland 10k on the hills of Central Park.
From Kristan Dietz of the Open:
In spite the cold weather, we had a fantastic race to open the NYRR Scoring Season. Our Women’s Open Team took first place!!! Way to start the season on a high note!
While the cold made PR’s difficult to come by, we still had amazing performances. Rolanda Bell placed second overall in 17:12. Following her was Jane Vongvorachoti’ s 4th place finish in a time of 17:28. Rounding out our top 5 scorers were Aileen Barry in 18:01, Christina Argueta in 18:03 and Kate Pfeffer in 18:26. Nice to see our veterans step up and make racing look easy!
Our entire women’s open team had great races on Sunday. Below are all of the performances:
Hannah Rose- 18:32
Annie Onishi- 18:37 (Annie loves Coogan’s and NYRR must have known because they posted this awesome photo of her in their “Local Heroes” album.)
Lauren Carter- 18:38
Alysia Dusseau- 18:41
Jennifer Busse- 19:08
Megan Kelly- 19:28
Amanda Kennedy- 19:37
Evelyn Abiola- 19:40
Bevin Peters- 19:45
Stephanie Yang- 19:50
Ivette Ramirez- 20:56
Thanks to those who turned out to race on a chilly day. The next two races are the Scotland 10K on Saturday April 6 and the Brooklyn Half Marathon on Saturday, May 18th. If you plan to run those races, please email me. NYC Half is also coming up on Sunday, March 17th, so if you aren’t running, get out and cheer your teammates on! Then join in the post-race celebration at Beckett’s starting at 10am.
From Ani Go of the W 40+:
The morning starts with another cold day for the very first points race of the season. Up for the challenge of the Washington Heights hills and thrills is Nicole Rodriguez, her debut at Coogan’s a swift 21:22. She represented for the lot of the 40+ tackling the course like a pro, hardcore against the cold in the orange singlet. The newest star of the 60+, Barbara Byrne (22:07, also her Coogan’s debut), and the ever stellar Sylvie (23:37) made up the rest of our master’s 40+ scoring team!
As a testament to the strength of the 60+ team, Captain Sylvie (1st in her age group), Barbara (2nd in her age group), and the rock solid Lynn Blackstone (2nd in her age group at 72 years young!) also scored for the 50+ team as well as their own 60+ team, where they were gold at first place.
Next scoring race is Scotland 10k. Please sign up, we need a strong showing in the next race!
From Sylvie Kimche of the 60+:
The CPTC W60+ (consisting of new member Barbara Byrne, old-timer Sylvie Kimche and very old-timer/founder Lynn Blackstone) started the year with a BANG! coming in 1st W60+ team in a combined time of 1:16:54 (8 1/2 minutes ahead of 2nd team Mercury Masters)
New member Barbara Byrne came in 1st for the team in a time of 22:07, good for 2nd place in her W60-64 age group (behind Kathryn Martin reappearing in a NYRR race after a 7-month absence!) with an excellent 87.78 AG%
Despite having trouble breathing because of the cold, Sylvie managed to run 23:37, 2nd for the team, 1st in her W65-69 age group with an 88.51 AG%
The always steady and reliable Lynn was 3rd for the team in 31:10, 2nd in her W70-74 age group with a 73.85 AG%
In the absence of younger masters…., Barbara, Sylvie and Lynn also scored for the W50+ (7th place = 4 pts). While Barbara and Sylvie also helped Nicole Rodriguez to a 6th place for the W40+ team (= 5pts)
Thanks to Tony for the cheering & encouragements! And congrats to all the CPTC teams for their great results!
Next race: the Scotland 10K on Sat April 6th. Please note that we still need a runner in the W60+ AG to complete the team for that race. Please advise if you are planning to run. Thanks! We need to keep up the momentum!
The Central Park Track Club New Balance can add another World Record to its growing list of accomplishments. On Friday, February 15th at the Armory, the relay team of Jonevan Hornsby, Andrew Hogue, David Peters, and Neil Fitzgerald eclipsed the men’s 35-39 4×800 meter indoor world record by running a time of 8:04.75. The previous record was 8:11.58.
Jonevan Hornsby, a former Georgetown middle distance star, took control of the race from the starting gun with a blistering 1:58 leg. With the lead, he passed the baton to Hogue, a Vice President on a Wall Street trading desk, who ran a 2:02 second leg. “When I handed the baton to Dave and the clock was right at 4:00 minutes, I knew we were well on pace to break the record”.
The reigning British Masters 1500m Champion, indoors and outdoors, David Peters clicked off four steady laps in 2 minutes flat and handed the baton to the reigning masters 800 meter world champion, Neil Fitzgerald. David recounted, “Before the race, I thought it was going to be touch and go, whether we would break the record. But as soon as Jonevan led out the first leg in sub-2 and Andrew kept us in front and well inside our time target on the second leg, I knew I had no choice but to go out there and keep the momentum going, so that Neil could bring us home on the final leg.
And Neil did just that. He closed the race with a last leg 2:03 stopping the clock at 8:04.65. “As Neil crossed the line, we realized that we hadn’t just broken the World Record but truly smashed it. It really was the best feeling in the world”, said Peters.
The team is coached by Devon Martin, a former 1500 meter Olympic Trials Qualifier from Columbia University. She herself, a 4×800 meter 35-39 4×800 meter women’s world record holder, has coached the Central Park Track Club New Balance to 3 straight Club National Championships. Devon Martin stated: “We were so proud to have these guys part of CPTC New Balance.”
From Ani Go:
Happy New Year!
A new year, and our masters are tearing up the inside track!
This weekend, a couple of our stars headed to Hartshorne to do the mile. Jill Vollweiler and Judy Stobbe (our newest, a big hello and welcome to CPTC!) both did the master 40 elite women’s mile. The platinum Jill ran 5:36.04, winning 2nd place. Judy blazed a 5:40.52, closing for 4th, after not doing an indoor mile in 25 years! WOOHOO! Fantastic job ladies!
Terry Ballou fired up week three of the Colgate Games, burning rubber in 5:13 flat for the 1500, winning her heat. Is it ok for me to say HOT DAMN?
And on Sunday, golden girl Sue Pearsall represented at the Sugarloaf Athletic Club indoor track series, doing the deuce in the mile and 800m. 6:14 in the mile and 2:49 in the 800m got her the meet records for both those distances for her age group. POW!
A huge congrats to our ladies for their incredible performances at their meets this weekend!
Upcoming indoor events–its cold outside, but warm up by the fire in the oval made by our masters on the track!
MILLROSE GAMES: SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 16th–Masters 40+ ladies will represent! Masters 40+ men will represent! Masters 60+ men will represent! Line ups still to be finalized, but we got plenty of CPTC representing. If you haven’t gotten tickets yet, what are you waiting for? Contact Hank Schiffman! $50 tickets, checks made out to CENTRAL PARK TRACK CLUB. Contact Hank at email@example.com. Check out the website on our CPTC-NB social committee Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/events/543338725691875/ or if you’re not on Facebook, http://www.armorytrack.com/Meet/1395/The-Millrose-Games-1213
Two more TNAR’s, Feb 7th, and Feb 21st. http://www.nyrr.org/races-and-events/2013/nyrr-thursday-night-at-the-races-3
USATF has recognized our Yumi Ogita and Sylvie Kimche as honorable mentions in its 2012 rankings of masters long distance runners. Yumi’s highest age graded score in NYRR races was a 94.1% (5:18) at the Fifth Avenue Mile, and Sylvie scored a 96.9% (6:22) at the same race.
Tobi Alli qualifies for USA Nationals in the 60 meters! Tobi was an All-American last indoors for Lehman College. Coached by Lesleigh Hogg at Lehman College and on Central Park, Tobi runs for CPTC New Balance in the summers and for Lehman College during the school year.