Saturday, May 22, 2010

2 interviews by Paul Soskind

Interview with Frank: McAneneny  

P.S.: For 20 plus years you’ve been running. How did it begin?  

Frank: When I started, I lived on East 34th street near Church Avenue. I would walk to the park and jog around it. Then we moved to Marine Park, and joined Richie Pedrone and Tony Puglisi running around the oval. I remember when John Richardson and the Marine Park Track Club would put on mile races there although I didn't run competitively until 1991.

P.S.: What was your first competitive race?

Frank: The 1991 Brooklyn Half, which was almost 4 full loops of Prospect Park. PS. Wow, that was some baptism!,

P.S.:  So who told you about PPTC?  

Frank: Denis Sivack, who also ran in Marine Park. I met Bobby Fisher, and I joined in 1991.

P.S.: What do you recall about PPTC and the running scene at that time.? Frank: For one we had club meetings in Bobby’s basement, later moving to Circle’s near the theatre. I met some really great people and friends such as Julio Zavala, Bill and Kathy O Gara, and Aaron Koffler. The age group competition was much more intense then. While there were fewer runners, there were proportionately a lot more really fast ones.

P.S.: After 20 years, you stopped competing; why?

Frank: Running has always been to me 95% for health, and 5% competition. It's made me fitter, healthier, and more agile, and I want to stay that way. 20 years competing was enough.

P.S.: I have seen you recently in the park, what do you observe? Frank: First of all there are many, many more female runners. Lots of women are running after having kids, many are pushing their kids as they run; that's great! Also, when you come out now on weekends it almost feels like you're part of a race, so many more people are running, which is also wonderful!  

P.S.: What did the club do when you started out that we aren’t, but could be doing today?

Frank: On several occasions we chartered a bus to go to out of town races such as the Fairfield Half in Connecticut and the Jersey Shore; that would be nice now too.  

P.S.: You've always been encouraging and inspiring to all of us and like you we should keep in focus that we run for health, bonding with others and a bit of competition now and then, thanks for your thoughts.    

Interview with Mark Crowther

P.S.: Was your introduction to running cross country in the U.K.?

Mark: No, I didn't take up running until a few years ago in America. Rugby was my sport; I did a lot of zigzagging and dashing about as a lineman, so I had great conditioning.  

P.S.: So you never ran competitively in college?

Mark: No but I did run a great deal just to stay in shape for rugby. The only racing was against my dad who was pretty quick. Running was done in cricket and rugby, although I had a childhood infatuation about being another Steve Ovett.

P.S.: So when did you get serious?

Mark: In 2008 because I had more time, and was tired of booze and cigarettes; I gave the 2008 marathon a go, and have been training seriously since then. I took the club bus to the start, joined PPTC after the finish, and have become more competitive since then.

P.S.: I noticed you are one guy who doesn't loaf out there; describe your philosophy of training.

Mark: I believe in pushing to the point of pain; go out and find a  “rabbit“ to chase down; or try to blow past cyclists on an uphill.

P.S.: So what's your ultimate goal?

Mark: to run a sub 3 hour marathon.

P.S.: I'm sure with your intensity you will make us all proud when you achieve it. Thanks

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