On this day 28 years ago, Andy Whitney ’79 won the Newsday Long Island Half Marathon in a time of 1:09:23. Here is the recap of the run from Joe Krupinski of Newsday.
Long Island Marathon: Old, New Faces Dominate Run – Whitney First in Men’s Half
Andy Whitney and three fellow members of Long Island’s elite running society provided some name recognition for the 13th Annual Newsday Long Island Marathon yesterday on a day in which many new faces emerged on a new course.
In the day’s most exciting race, Whitney won the 13.1-mile event, leading almost start to finish. Whitney, 28, won in 1:09:23, beating Chris Webber, 38, of Sayville (1:09:40), Brian Ronan, 20, of Baldwin (1:10:23), and Bob Giambalvo, 40, of Shirley (1:11:10). Pat Petersen, another star in the local running scene, did not compete, having run the London Marathon April 22.
A stiff wind hit the marathoners in the face heading back to the park on Wantagh Parkway. “The wind was vicious,” one runner said. “We had been warned about it, but I didn’t imagine it could be that bad.”
A total of 8,712 runners caused a mob scene at the starting line. Almost 2,000 opted to run the full marathon. Whitney was the strongest of the half-marathoners. A two-time marathon runner-up, Whitney finished second behind his 30-year-old brother, Mark, in the full marathon in 1988, but didn’t enter last year’s event.
“It was pretty nice to win after finishing second twice in a row,” said Whitney, an operations supervisor for an elevator company. “It was a pretty competitive race.”
“Andy was too strong for us today,” said Webber, who shared the half-marathon championship in deliberate dead heats with running partner Mark Bossardet in both 1985 and 1986. “I traded the lead with him back and forth early, but those were tough conditions on the way back.”
“I let Brian [Ronan] set the pace for the first eight miles,” Whitney said, “and even drafted off him in the wind. Then I gradually picked it up and took the lead from there.”