Gulf Winds is a track club
By Gary Droze
Many community running clubs cater almost exclusively to road runners, never mind that they may plainly label themselves “track clubs.” Prominent regional examples of this mixed message include the Atlanta Track Club and Gainesville’s Florida Track Club. Like numerous running clubs nationwide, these fine organizations started life as true track clubs, but metamorphasized into road running clubs as pavement pounding eclipsed track competition in popularity. These erstwhile track clubs might aptly be renamed road running clubs, to reflect their current emphasis.
No renaming is required for the Gulf Winds Track Club, Tallahassee’s chief running organization. While the GWTC involves itself with dozens of road races each year, it also responds with gusto to the demands of track junkies, especially during the summer months. Through a seamless collaboration with Tallahassee Parks and Recreation Department administrator Dave Hormouth and Lincoln High School track coach Perry Shaw, the GWTC has sponsored a summer series of track meets for many years. Florida State University’s Mike Long Track, the longtime site for these meets, will be unavailable this year, due to renovating construction. The track meets will instead be contested each Thursday at the Maclay School Track, beginning June 6th and continuing through August 1st. Starting time will be 6:45pm. The schedule for each week includes sprint and distance events, a relay, and long jump or high jump. The absence of an entry fee is a pleasant inducement, but the real draws for this track meet series are the communal ambience and the utter diversity in the competition. Spectators may witness a gamut of performances, from kindergarteners delightedly shrieking their way through a 40 yard dash, to visiting Olympians using the 2 mile as a tempo run. The excitement is sure to ratchet upwards during friendly wagers about which aging local distance runner will pop a hamstring while trying to scavenge grand prix points in the 100 meters. Each meet will begin at 6:45pm. For further information, contact David Hormouth at 891-3866, or check www.gulfwinds.org.
The Gulf Winds Track Club’s commitment to track events also shows up in its choice of lecture series topics. This month, series coordinator Art Remillard gives us a chance to meet area high school track stars, as they discuss their recent performances in a forum setting. The forum will be held at the Myers Park Community Center on Thursday, May 16th, at 7pm. Public is invited. For more information, call Art at 412-9109.