Hartrick Wins Mayor's High Five Award
at Philly Marathon
BY DAVID BLOCK
PHILADELPHIA, PA--At the 22nd running of the GORE-TEX Philadelphia Marathon, Half Marathon on November 22, and the Rothman Institute 8K on November 21, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter stood in his usual spot near the starting line high fiving the runners as they passed him. Because his mayoral term ends January 2016, this was his last time doing that.
"I will miss high fiving the runners," said Mayor Nutter to this Runner's Gazette writer. "But the race is what's important. Seeing these runners experiencing their joy is what this race is all about. The coordination with all the city departments and agencies, the sponsors, everyone actively involved makes a big, big difference. I love this race."
When asked to share a high-five memory, the mayor smiled: "On one occasion," said Nutter, "I was trying to move because I thought a runner was about to run into me, and knock me down. But he just wanted to hug me. I gave him one."
Since 2010, a specific Philadelphia Marathon participant has received the Mayor's special High Five Award, because of their difficult effort just to be able to run the race.
The 2015 recipient was Glenn Hartrick, 34, of Jersey City, New Jersey. Hartrick was a triathlete who could clock a 2:57 marathon and 1:18 half-marathon. Unfortunately, his whole life changed June 12, 2014. "It was 6:30 in the morning," said Hartrick. "While biking in New Jersey just south of the George Washington Bridge. A car made an illegal U-turn and ran right into me. I was instantly paralyzed from the chest down."
At first, he thought he would recover.
"It took a while for people to tell me that I was going to be paralyzed forever," said Hartrick, "because they didn't want me to give up the fight [of recovering]. I had to figure it out for myself. At first I thought, it's just for now. When I realized it was reality, I said, 'it is what it is.' I got into the space of being the same old Glenn I'd always been. I started training for the next part of my life."
He decided to hand cycle, even though the doctors tried to discourage him.
"They didn't recommend it because of the extent of my injury," said Hartrick, who sustained broken ribs, a collapsed lung, and who lost 35 pounds. "The doctors didn't think it was wise for me to do active things like that, especially this fast, but they were talking to the wrong guy. I like to prove people wrong, especially when they say I can't do something. Being an elite high-level athlete, I know my body better than doctors. I know the difference between pain and injury."
At the Philadelphia Marathon, Hartrick was the third hand cyclist to finish; he clocked 1:39:08. He was happy because his goal was to finish in the top five.
Hartrick said that he was grateful to the Challenged Athletes' Foundation who provided him with the hand cycle and encouragement to be physically active again.
After the gun sounded, Deneke grabbed the lead and went unchallenged until Mile 10 near Lansdowne Ave. and Memorial Hall. There, a small group of runners caught up. But at Mile 24 on Kelly Drive, Deneke broke away and ran the last two miles alone.
"I wanted to push," said Deneke in broken English. "I felt confident [about winning]," he continued. The runners were not his biggest challenge. "It was windy and cold I want to come back [to Philadelphia]. "The people are very nice."
Olalde dominated the women's field from start to finish. Olalde said that she is not at her best. Her best marathon time to date is 2:35:43 when she won the Birmingham Marathon in February 2014. Olalde gave birth this past March. She's confident that she will reach her peak again.
1 2:17:44 Teklu Deneke
1 2:40:05 Gisela Olalde
HALF MARATHON MEN
HALF MARATHON WOMEN
1 1:09:49 Aliphine Tuliamuk-Bolton KEN