Meanwhile, back in Philly, the men’s team and the remainder of the women’s team that were racing on this weekend, awoke to somewhat and humid conditions. Though there was cloud cover early, the clouds broke about five minutes before the gun at the Jefferson Hospital Philadelphia Distance Run.
As always, PDR boasted a large pack of talented American runners, as well as a truly international field. And by the time the day was over, Philadelphia spectators would see Abdi Abdirahman flirt with the American half marathon record.
At the gun, Emily and Claire were joined by PRTC newcomer Abby Dean. Abby brings significant credentials to the women’s team – especially with regard to the races between 10 miles and the marathon. The men’s team found themselves working together in two groups early in the race. Skelly, Ross, and Ted ran through the early miles in the city together, trying to hold five minute flat pace despite the warm temperatures.
As the race wound towards West River Drive, Tim, Tom, Hatch, and Bart worked together as a strong nucleus, demonstrating the men’s team true depth. Skelly pushed ahead of Ross and Ted a little before the East Falls Bridge, and would end the day as the men’s team’s first finisher. This performance capped a strong Summer on the roads for Skelly.
Meanwhile, Emily kept running towards her performance that would garner her position as the first local finisher for the second straight year. And Claire, who afterwards said she might have been a little too overzealous in the early miles, found her rhythm and was running a spectacular race for her first attempt at the half marathon. Claire usually focuses on mid-distance races, so her decision to utilize her training strength in this race was a good one. Claire and Abby would finish very close to one another in their first race together.
As the second men’s pack ran down Kelly Drive, Bart pushed ahead, setting PRs at several distances as he made his way toward the Art Museum. As you read in the headline, Bart PR’d by an astounding four minutes! His race was truly incredible. And by the time Hatch and Tim crossed the line, the men’s team had placed six men under 1:10 and had secured the team title once again. Seann Mulcahy followed
The newcomer on the men’s side – Pat Ward – ran a smart first half marathon to finish in 1:13.01, followed by Seann Mulcahy in 1:14:56. A la Matt Byrne, teammate Spencer Shelly made a long awaited return to racing as well.