Patrick Peterson held American record in marathon for 13 years

Racing heart slowed down elite runner
Patrick Peterson, 53, once ran the London Marathon in 2:10, which was an American record. Peterson was 28 at the time. BY DAVE FREDERICK
March 21, 2014

Storied past - Halls of fame honor the past, but athletes are always reminded not to live in the past, to play it forward, to keep working at it. I have a sports joke which is, “You know, I think I used to be better than you used to be.” I saw Patrick Peterson run the Shamrock Shuffle 15K March 15, but really he was just some older guy in second who ran by my camera as I refocused on the next runner. Here is just part of 53-year-old Peterson’s athletic biography: Patrick was one of the top marathon runners in the United States, running a 2:10 in the London Marathon in 1989, an American record that stood for 13 years. His career was cut weird by atrial fibrillations or racing heart. (Yes, that is ironic, not to mention disconcerting).  His wife Bea has run a 2:45 personal best in the marathon. They have four children including two sons with autism.

Too Live Crew - The winter weather has been as nasty as it wants to be, which is cool if not cold, but spring athletes are shouting, “Enough already, we need fields prepared for practice; we have things to go over and personnel to evaluate!” A high-level meeting then usually occurs between Athletic Director Bob Cilento and Chief Custodian Bernie Bowden with Bernie handing Bob the keys to the Bobcat, saying, “You go tear up a million-dollar turf field if you want, but I ain’t doing it."  Bernie, Eddie Reese and Jay “Pop Pop” Kennedy have done incredible work getting the fields ready for practice, but everyone is now worn out with soggy soil and biting temperatures. Astronomical spring is here, and the best way to ensure comfort at a spring event is to watch it from the cab of a pickup truck.

Wall and hall space - Temple University’s McGonigle Hall on Broad Street in Philly has received a $60 million upgrade, and I can no longer find my picture on the wall with the 1965 football team. I was there for an indoor tailgate on a rainy March 19 following the Owls' dramatic comeback after being down 7-1 in the first half to beat Hofstra 9-8 in overtime. Many Long Island-based fans of The Pride thought the outcome was a result of a conspiracy of officials, like getting crosschecked in the back of the neck with possession is supposed to result in some free position game-winner. But seriously, I was wearing my Donny Brasco Under Armour action wear, and some parents - OK, one - was dazzled when I told him I played football for the Owls 50 years earlier, and now in 2014 I can actually pick my granddaughter out of a lineup.

Two pools - I am in two pools (Indian fat guy name), which is better than taking up two lanes in one pool, as the NCAA tournament is about to commence. I do absolutely no research; I just click a cursor and move on to the next round. The hardest part for me is remembering passwords so I can look back to see how I’m doing.

Snippets - Congratulations to Cape’s Jimmy Allen and Johnny Bishop for being inducted into the Delaware Legends Basketball Hall of Fame March 15 at a breakfast at the Embassy Suites in Newark. Jimmy and John were leaders on the 1975 team that went 25-0 and won the state championship. Many still consider that team the best high school team that has ever played in Delaware. Other inductees for the class of 2014 were Dave Sysko, Len Chasanov, John Irving, Charlie Rayne, Jim Doody and Gary Lumpkin. I know a person who is in 10 sports halls of fame but needs an arm lever and a spring-loaded recliner to propel him toward the kitchen so he can activate his omelet maker.

Real games begin Saturday, March 22, as Cape baseball is at Caravel while boys' lacrosse opens at Bullis Prep and girls' lacrosse is at Holy Cross. These are tough openers for all three teams.

Little League blended with travel ball - I honestly don’t know how they continue to coexist.

Who invented "Throwback Thursday"? I thought it was another fishing show. Go on now, git!

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