It is Time to Party – with the Fleet of Foot


David Yon

Sometimes the stars line up and the sky parts and something really special happens. So it was that Toby Warden, the Boulder Training Group Coordinator, started searching for a warm humid place for the Boulder Training Group to run. Yep, this group trains in the high dry climate of Boulder Colorado and one thing we have in Tallahassee is humidity. And yep, this group includes some of the best talent on the American distance running scene. Toby’s search found the GWTC web page and the descriptions about the running community and trails of Tallahassee. Not long after that she fell under the spell of Gary Droze who found an apartment, furniture and lots more for the group. Next thing you know, they loaded up the family and headed for…Lake Overstreet.

So how special is this group of runners? Gary Droze laid it out in his Tuesday column. The group includes:

Former 2:13 marathoner Brad Hudson who coaches this enclave of elite athletes.

Jason Hartmann. A member of the United States National Team for the 2006 World Cross-Country Championships, Hartman owns personal bests of 13:36 for 5K and 28:31 for 10K.

Ed Torres. Ed was a key figure on the University of Colorado cross-country team that won an NCAA title recently.

Jorge Torres. Ed’s twin brother boasts a 10K PR of 28:14. He teamed up with Hartmann in the 2006 World XC Championships.

Dathan Ritzenhein. He’s on the cover of this month’s Running Times. Why? Partly because he’s the American 10K collegiate record holder (27:38 – that’s better than 4:26 per mile for over six miles in a row). And partly because this 2004 Olympian may be America’s greatest hope in the marathon.

It is probably the fastest set of feet to ever visit Tallahassee. And what did they think of Tallahassee? Well, Toby’s stay was short, but her parting words were: “I loved Tallahassee – best to place to run I have ever seen – and I have looked in over 25 countries.” Or you can go the and find the following:

Our first sea-level camp of 2007 has brought us to the lush Florida state capital of Tallahassee, also known as “Trailahassee”. This city is home to a fantastic trail system, a vibrant running community and many sunny days. Lots of generous runners (and non-runners) from the GULFWINDS TRACK CLUB and the MACLAY SCHOOL communities have shown us the essence of Southern Hospitality. Coach Gary Droze has rallied tremendous support for our visit. We also got some great tips on the Tallahassee area from Coach Pete Rea, of ZAP FITNESS, who has been bringing his athletes here for a few seasons now. Thanks everyone!

For more photos from the recent Tallahassee Track workout visit John Kalin’s Photo Gallery page of the Maclay School. MORE PHOTOS. Here are a few of his photos below of James, Jorge and Dathan.

So if you want to really make that part about southern hospitality true, come on out to Po’ Boys Downtown (224 College Avenue) on Tuesday, March 13 from 7 pm until to meet these runners in the group and show them some more southern hospitality. Kathy Lindsay is putting together a very special GWTC social.