A First Time For Everything

Posted: 2 November by Pat Melton in Alumni, Athletes
Tags: , , , ,

The theme of Mary Boggs’ latest alumni entry here is “Hey, why not try it?”

That’s because two recent Ivy League graduates chose to test themselves in an unprecedented grueling manner and came out the smiling on the other side.

One was former Harvard track captain Sean Barrett, who decided to run his first marathon at the Marine Marathon over the weekend. Jim Hage of the Washington Post told the story:

Marine Corps 1st Lt. Sean Barrett, running his first marathon, took third in 2:24:08. Barrett, who began training for the race while stationed in Iraq, will be deployed to Afghanistan in early January; he ran with “USMC” across his chest.

“Wearing the Marine Corps singlet at this race is a great honor,” said Barrett, a 2007 Harvard graduate. “It’s not lost on us that there are a lot of Marines deployed right now. Here, the crowd gives you great support, but that also means you can’t let them down.”

Former Cornell soccer player Brian Kuritzky recently took a challenge on behalf of his mother, who he had lost to breast cancer when he was 15 years old. Wrote Shelly Banjo of the Wall Street Journal:

Brian Kuritzky is wagering if his mental strength can prevail over physical pain.

On Saturday the 24-year-old Goldman Sachs analyst will head to Florida to compete in the Great Floridian triathlon, an ultradistance event near Lake Minneola that includes swimming 2.4 miles, biking 112 miles and running 26.2 miles, all on the basis of a bet he made two weeks ago with a couple of Goldman coworkers that he could finish an ultradistance event without any training.

Although Mr. Kuritzky is an athletic soccer player, he says he lacks experience in biking and swimming so he set some ground rules: For every minute he finishes the race over 16 hours, he will pay his coworkers $1 each. However, for every minute he finishes the race under 16 hours, they have to put up $1 each. At stake is nearly $20,000 pledged by coworkers and friends who took the bet once they got wind of the wager, which will go to the breast-cancer charity Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

He made it with 30 minutes to spare and has raised more than $100,000.

And one final note. Four of the top 20 women’s finishers at the Mayor’s Cup in Boston a few weekends ago were former Ivy runners. Princeton’s Reilly Kiernan was second (17:08) followed by Dartmouth’s Erin Dromgoole (fourth), Princeton’s Emily Kroshus (16th) and Penn’s Leah Brogan (17th).

Also, one of the Heps Track contributors, TV Guide genius Rich Sands, recently wrote about Marion Jones and her efforts to rewrite history. If you want to read a more scathing piece, try this one from Alan Abrahamson.

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