The Turkey Trot
Of all the sporting crowd, the distance running fraternity/sorority must be the happiest, mutually supportive and looniest.
Thanksgiving morning was cold and wet and windy and one would think that no one - or at most a half dozen crazies - would show up at the former Oak Bluffs town hall, the announced starting point for the annual O.B. 5K Turkey Trot road race.
Not at all!
Fifty-six runners registered prior to the 8:30 am start. Spirits were high; even higher than usual because of the foul weather conditions. Friendships were renewed or quickly made. Everyone seemed to be avidly anticipating the impending run in the rain.
With broad smiles and waves and what the Psalmist called "a joyful noise," the throng ran downhill and turned left on Circuit Ave., then to follow a course west on Wing Road, turning right onto County Road, right again on Vineyard Ave. past the P.A. Club, left on Dukes County Ave. and right onto New York Ave., which becomes Lake Ave. to finish where they began at the former town hall.
Twenty-two-year-old Peter Birmey of Santa Monica, Calif., finished first in 17:43, an excellent time even though it was, as race impresario Roger Wey called it, "a 5K more or less."
Then came Nick Slone, 27, of Edgartown in 19:25, followed by Dana Gaines, 48, also of Edgartown, at 20:57.
Patty Thompson, 37, of Scituate was the first female finisher, the eighth to reach the line.
Others making the run were (4) Brooks Foehl, 40, Williamstown, 21:11; (5) Joe Bonaccorsi, 42, West Tisbury, 21:26; (6) Booth Kyle, 36, Deerfield, 21:44; (7) Robert Ogden, 40, Vineyard Haven, 22:05; (9) Cheryl Bush, 37, White River, Vt., 22:44; (10) Peter Thompson, 40, Scituate, 22:50 (11) Wayne Guyther, 49, Oak Bluffs, 23:01.
(12) Matthew Wrenshall, 26, Pittsburgh, Pa., 23:13 (13) Karl Laskowski, 24, New Haven, Conn., 24:01; (14) William Everett, 30, Quincy, 24:41; (15) Samuel McGrath, 11, Norwood, 24:47; (16) Patrick Parker, 45, Oak Bluffs, 25:00; (17) Rebekah Nivaia, 16. Tisbury,
25:02; (18) Andrea Bonacorsi, River Forest, Ill., 25:50; (19) Nick Passos, 12, Hingham, 25:55; (20) Kate Wrenshall, 23, Washington, D.C. 26:13; (21) Sarah Wrenshall, 20, Madison, Wis., 26:30.
(22) Zosia Piotronska, 26, New Haven, Conn., 26:43; (23) Brian Kennedy, 49, Tisbury, 26:55; (24) Anne Williamson, 41, Edgartown, 27:18; (25) Lee Sachs, 43, Chilmark, 27:19; (26) Jeffrey Sachs, 39, Marblehead, 27:42; (27) Olivia Hull, 15, Georgetown, 27:48; (28) Jen Wen Fiori, Oak Bluffs, 27:51; (29) Elizabeth Kyle, 29, New York City, 28:11.
(30) Molly Birmey, Santa Monica, Cal., 28:27; (31) Michael Chin, 15, Georgetown, 29:22; (32) Theresa Geary, Tisbury, 29:36; (33) Jill Laskowski, 20, Evanston, Ill., 29:53; (34) Anthony Leonardo, 40, West Tisbury, 30:13; (35) Gail Leonardo, 38, West Tisbury, 30:27; (36) Kaitlyn Cafferry, 31, Boston, 30:41; (37) Chris Kyle, 33, Los Angeles, Cal., 30:41; (38) Shelly Passios, 42, Hingham, 30:53; (39) Robert Laskowski, 54, Centerville, 31:40; (40) Abigail Gibavic, 20, New York City, 32:28; (41) Aubrey Gibavic, 22, Tisbury, 32:29 ; (42) Kathy Laskowski, 53, Centerville, Del., 34:05.
(43) Katerina Rottner, 41, New Haven, Conn., 35:00; (44) Samantha Solomon, 10, New Haven, Conn., 35:07; (45) Joe Hull, 61, Edgartown, 35:58; (46) Wendy Wen, 12, Edgartown, 36:04; (47) Pamela Henderson, 40, Edgartown, 36:04; (48) Cynthia McGrath, 46, Norwood, 36:05; (49) Roger Wey, 65, Oak Bluffs, 36:07; (50) Zach Passios, 6, Hingham, 36:08; (51) Jim Passios, 45, Hingham, 36:10; (52) Gail Suprenant, 51, East Hampton, 36:19; (53) Deborah Kyle, 60, Edgartown, 38:40; (54) Al Kyle, 60, Edgartown, 38:47; (55) Celia Laskowski, 16, Centerville, Del., 44:10; (56) Lawlor, 70, Springfield, 44:18.
All agreed it was a fine romp in the rain, but that the turn from Dukes County to New York Ave was "like hitting a wall." One said that facing the wind-blown rain on an incline at the end of the race was reminiscent of Boston's Heartbreak Hill.
After congratulating each other, even the stragglers at the end, the runners bade each other adieu and a Happy Thanksgiving, promising to see each other Saturday at the 5K for KJ.
Winning coach retires
Seasonal Islander Ray Cabot, the eldest son of Times reporter Dan Cabot and his wife Nancy, retired as head coach of girls soccer at the Peddie School in Hightstown, N.J., after 16 seasons, during which his teams compiled a 207-62-14 record and captured the state championship nine times.
Coach Cabot was named Prep School Coach of the Year seven times and his 1994 team was called Team of the Decade by the Trenton Times. His undefeated team of 2001 (19-0) received top ranking by Student Sports magazine. The unbeaten season was part of a 40-0 run from Oct. 2000 to mid-season 2002.
Cabot's philosophy was always to seek to compete against the most difficult opponents. "I look back with pride on the level of competition against which we challenged ourselves." he said.
The many wins and few losses are only a part of his legacy. "What I take with me," he said, "is the remarkable relationships with some exceptional kids."
O'Bryan is Top Gun
Tim O'Bryan of Edgartown earned this year's MV Rod & Gun Club's Top Gun Award by accumulating the best score in the three tests of marksmanship at the club's annual shotgun shoot, Sunday. All shooters tried their hand at the standing deer, running deer targets and over-the-shoulder trap shoot.
Bob Graves of Oak Bluffs was second and Mark Plante third.
Fine weather added to the pleasure of contestants and observers. Six persons took home turkeys donated by Stop and Shop and hams from Cronig's Market, having achieved top scores in the several events.
On Sunday, Dec. 10, the Rod & Gun Club will hold its annual Black Powder Shoot from 10 am to 3 pm.
The public is invited to watch their Island neighbors fire primitive firearms at various targets.
Refreshments will be available.
Amy Maciel reminds all that young basketball players, in grades 5 through 9, may register for the Star Shooters Ultimate Basketball Shooting Camp with Jay Wolf to be held at the Edgartown School, Jan. 6. Register for the camp at the Boys & Girls Club on Saturday, Dec. 16, from 9 to 11 am. To learn more, call Amy at 696-6028.