Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Piotr Kurylo - Spartathlon 2007 2nd Place Finisher
Sasha Brewis (was involved with the original race in 1983 - 1985) was at the Spartathlon this year and asked why I didn't give more attention to 2nd place finisher Piotr Kurylo from Poland (pictured above from Kathimerini Newspaper). Apparently Kurylo walked for 6 weeks to get to the race in Greece from his home in Poland, UNREAL! Also, since he is not a wealthy man, his friends and family put together a collection of money for his entry. What an inspiring story of determination! Piotr Kurylo is a fine example of an every day person doing something absolutely extraordinary; Congrats Piotr!
Sasha also provided me with a bit of interesting trivia I thought you all might appreciate as follows:
"By the way, did you know the name Sparthalon comes from Sparta - Athens - London in tribute to John Foden and the other 2 RAF (Royal Air Force) runners from the UK who originally tested the course in 1981 on learning Phidippides had left Athens at sunrise and arrived the following day at sunset to ask for help with the battle of Thermopylae?
Foden got in touch with Mike Callaghan and John Leatham and convinced them to help make it race. Those of us involved in the initial first 1983 Race were very proud that Yannis Kouros won. He was a local guy who worked as a guard at Nemea and would regularly run across Sangas Mountain to have a coffee in Nestani. We heard about him when we did the check on the route for water holes and asked the coffee shop in Nestani to let him know when we were holding the first race.
Kouros turned up for the briefing, having not been in time to register and it was to the credit of the other international athletes that agreed he should be allowed to run."
As most of you know Kouros holds the course record finishing in an amazing 20 hours and 25 minutes back in 1984.
Hope all of you are well and Happy Running,