TACOMA CITY MARATHON
When it was confirmed in late March that I had prostate cancer, an immediate concern was that I wouldn’t be able to run the Yakima River Canyon Marathon (YRCM) on April 5, 2008, due to pending surgery and recovery. Subsequently my cryoscopic (cold exposure) treatment couldn’t be scheduled until April 15th at the Regional Hospital in Yakima. That suited us fine, and I kept my YRCM string intact.
The treatment I had was a minimal invasion procedure that killed the cancer cells and permitted a rapid recovery. The second day after surgery I was able to walk an hour for exercise and within two weeks I was hiking two hours a day from our Whistler, BC, timeshare unit. I passed up the Wenatchee Marathon and the Vancouver International Marathon to make sure that when I ran the Tacoma City Marathon I would be fit.
On the morning of the day before the race, Lenore and I drove 35 miles from our Renton home to the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center and checked in with Tony Phillippi, co-race director, and Rob Hester, volunteer coordinator. Both are members of the Marathon Maniacs Club, a supporting group of the marathon.
We passed out runners’ bibs, timing chips, technical shirts and goody bags to registered marathon participants. It was a fun assignment that gave us a chance to visit with friends, acquaintances and others.
On Saturday morning, May 10, 2008, as I walked to the 7:00 a.m. start of the Tacoma City Marathon, I was thankful to be back to my sport of marathoning after almost four weeks of rest and recuperation.
While I waited for the race to start, a white stretch limousine drove to the starting line, and the pacesetters hopped out! Being at a Marathon Maniac (MM) event one can expect pleasant surprises such as this. Tony Phillippi introduced each pacesetter, gave the pace to be run, and then mentioned the hometown and number of marathons run. These statistics were impressive.
Once the race started, I knew that I was going to have a good day. There was no post-operation soreness even when I pounded the pavement on the downgrades.
The weather was ideal with air temperatures at 50 degrees at the start and 60 degrees at the finish. The sky was overcast, and an early shower didn’t last beyond the 5K point. The air was calm for the most part with a cooling breeze in the last miles. I ran part of every mile and walked the steepest uphills.
Along the way I visited with Mel Preedy, Val Ridao, Anne Groenig and others. I learned that Jason Goodmanson and Kelsey Craft were running their first marathon. Congratulations to them and to the other first time finishers!
It was good to see my fellow Interurban Running Club members and Tenacious Turtles volunteering at Mile 12 Aid Station in Port Defiance Park. They were dressed as Blues Brothers musicians and played tapes of their music.
I enjoyed the downhill in the last two miles, and I was glad to get my medal and a hug from Lenore as I finished with a 5:38:37. I was 315th of 347 finishers and first of two in the 75+ male division.
Three hours earlier Michael Lynes, 41, of Tacoma had won the race with a course record time of 2:38:11. This was a two minute improvement over his winning time in 2007. In second and third places were Ryan Berg, 34, of Tacoma (2:50:40) and Phil Grahifs, 24, of Spokane (2:58:32).
Annie Thiessen, 37, of Tacoma also set a course record as she finished in 3:00:21 and came in 4th overall! The next two women finishers were Danita Erickson, 36, of Tacoma (3:05:58) and Rebecca Peebles, 26, of Madison, Wisconsin (3:17:38).
Because this is a Marathon Maniac sponsored race, the members were very prominent as director, coordinators, volunteers, pacers, aid station crews and participants in the marathon and shorter races. The ones I could locate in the marathon results are shown in the partial list with an MM designation.
The second annual Tacoma City Marathon was another successful event, and our thanks go to the directors, Paul Morrison of Fleet Feet Sports in Bonney Lake and Tony Phillippi, the sponsors and the volunteers. Our thanks also go to our many friends who expressed their concern about our health and recovery. I know that helped me run well to give me my best time in six months!
…………………………….Written by Bob Dolphin
PARTIAL RESULTS…….Tacoma City Marathon………May 10, 2008
2:38:11 Michael Lynes, 41, Tacoma, Overall Winner, First in Age Group