Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Vintage Running T-Shirts

I missed wearing a classic T-shirt last month at the Classic T-Shirt race in Lowell a few weeks back. Last week, my wife took a box out of the garage and said, "Let's throw away some shirts!" So I tossed a bunch of shirts from the 1990's that had been sitting there useless from the last time I had seen them (a few Mt. Washingtons, Pack Monadnocks, a 1996 Hawaian Ironman shirt (where did that come from?) and a bunch of others from various races, but I still hung on to a few shirts from the 1970's and 1980's (some have shrunk to ridiculous proportions) for future classic T-shirt nights. Then I saw a Vintage runnning t-shirt contest on Competitor.com and decided that I should enter a shirt.

First off all my most memorable race t-shirts were made into a hanging quilt by my wife many years ago, so I can't enter those. It hangs in my basement behind my computer reminding me of the best of my competitions and that way no one has to see it but me.

Top to bottom left to right:
1980 Falmouth Road Race -my hometown and favorite race- also my first ever road race in 1975
New England Triathlon Series- Fairlee Vt. 1987 -I did all the New England Triathlon series races the first few years it was held. There was a race in every state. In 1987 my car died on the way home. One year one of the Triathlon magazines did a cover story on this race and the cover was a picture of the start. My wife and friends who came to cheer me on were seen in the photo. I was just one of the masses with an orange swim cap on. 
1976 New York State Section 11 Cross Country State Championships. I worked hard to make varisty my senior year at the Stony Brook School. We finished 3rd in the state in our division at the Bear Mountain race and I was the 4th guy in on our team. This is probably the shirt I am most proud of because you had to earn it and it wasn't easy for me.
Bud Light U.S. Triathlon Series Boston 1986. I qualified to compete at the National Championships to be held at Hilton Head at this race. Too bad no one told me until I got the results booklet (after the National Championships had already been held- no internt in those days!).
1985 Lakeville Triathlon. I won this thing and beat a couple of guys who were sponsored triathletes.
1980 Gil Dodds Marathon. Held for only one year at Wheaton College. I finished in 2:50:07 (7 seconds short of qualifying for Boston). This was the most comfortable shirt ever given at a race. It was a football style jersey.
1985 Bay State Triathlon  Used to love this race. One year I ran with Dave Scott for about 1/8 mile-he was lapping me however!
1981 Lake County Heart Fund Marathon 19th place 2:48:36 finally qualified for Boston.
86th Boston Marathon 1982 My first Boston and the most painful race I ever finished.
1986 Cape Cod Endurance Triathlon I did this race the first 5 years they had it (1983-1987) and absolutely loved it!
1985 New England Triathlon Series Sharon, Ma. I loved this race series. One year that I did this race a competitor drowned.
1985 Green Mountain Steel-Man Triathlon. was a 1/2 Ironman distance race in the mountains of Vermont. My bike computer showed that I hit a maximum speed of 62 mph going down the mountain roads (that will happen when you copy pictures you had seen of Tour de France riders and put your chest on the handlebar and nose down by the front wheel-butt in the air). I liked the cow shirt!

The quilt is also good for sticking pins onto and the dowels make a great place to throw those medals you get at various races.

So I had to decide what shirt to enter into the contest. I had some older shirts, but decided to enter the 1982 Gurnet Classic Beach Run shirt beacuse it was such a classic New England race. The race was held in Duxbury, Ma. between 1975 -1988 and went out and back on the beach. It wasn't a race I did anything special at in fact it was the first race I did after recovering from broken and cracked bones in my ankle and heel. I ran my first Boston Marathon in 1982 and severely dehydrated in the heat. Six days later I ran my fastest 5 miler 26:36 and the next week broke the bones sliding into a base during a softball game. How was I to know the base was a sack of sand? The Gurnet Classic Beach Run was a race that would see the greatest road runners in the world show up to run (most of them were from New England): Bill Rodgers, Alberto Salazar, Bobby Hodge and others. I believe Bob Hodge won the year that I ran it.

photo from 1975 race: Al Salazar, Mark Duggin, Vin Fleming, Bill Rodgers, Bob Hodge

Article on 1978 version of the race (photo above)
Another article and iterview with Bob Hodge.

So here is my shirt and the finisher card I got that said I finished in 74th place. I am going to send it to the contest. It says you can also vote on your favorite shirt, but I don't see how. There are only two shirts pictured on the site now. Once I get mine up, you can vote if you like, but even better, enter your own vintage t-shirt. The winner gets a pair of Saucony shoes, so the odds right now are pretty good. The contest ends of July 31 Go here.

Trying to sneak the Gurnet Classic Beach Run hat on
during a family picture.

1 comment:

Laura said...

I finally had most of my t-shirts made into a quilt and I actually use it as a quilt. Makes me happy each time I see the various shirts and remember the races. Occasionally I look for a shirt to wear and remember it is in the quilt!