Citing growing costs, triathlon cuts 7-year ties to Baltimore

Bill Tanton ... ..

August 15, 1991|By Bill Tanton

The annual Bud Lite triathlon is history in Baltimore.

"It's gone," says Lyn Brooks, who was the local director of the swim-bike-run event that was held here for the seventh and final time on June 23.

"It just became too expensive with all the charges we're being hit with. Flo Bryan [of the U.S. Triathlon Association] said she's not even going to apply for Baltimore for next year."

"We're really sorry to see Baltimore lose it," says George Acton, general manager of Winner Distributing, which handles Budweiser in this market.

"Not only was it a world-class event that brought a lot of fun and excitement here once a year. The economic impact has been considerable.

"Of the 2,000 participants who took part in it every year, 80 percent came from out of town. They and their families had to stay somewhere. They had to eat somewhere. They had to buy gas somewhere. This is a sad day."

This year's event nearly was called off over last-minute disagreements between triathlon organizers and city and Baltimore County officials over things like the cost of

police protection.

"We expect to pay the cost of the extra police required for the event," Brooks says, "but we're still getting bills for things like meetings and site inspections. I question whether the city and county -- especially the county -- really want to do special events."

Replies Carol Hirschburg, of Baltimore County's office of communications:

"It's not true that we're not interested in doing special events. We're putting together a fee schedule now for things like ethnic events that we hope to hold in the future.

"The problem with the triathlon was that it required emergency services that took away services from other parts of the county. Also, there was a tremendous outcry from residents who couldn't get out of their driveways to get to church because of the triathlon. After all, it's their county."

There has been speculation that Brooks will take the triathlon to Ocean City in '92 but she is ruling that out.

"Ocean City is already too congested on a Sunday in June to hold a triathlon," she says. "I'm looking for another site somewhere in the Mid-Atlantic region, some place with a nice bike course."

* The Orioles have added one of baseball's great names to their organization: another MacPhail.

This one is 22-year-old Leland S. MacPhail IV. He's working in scouting and player development with Doug Melvin and minor-league director Roy Krasic.

Lee's great-grandfather was Larry MacPhail, who ran the Reds, Dodgers and Yankees. His grandfather is Lee MacPhail, once the general manager of the Orioles and Yankees and president of the American League. His uncle, Andy MacPhail, is GM of the Minnesota Twins.

"I've been permanent for over a month," says MacPhail, who interned with the Orioles during summers until he graduated this year from Lafayette. "I love the work. This is what I've always wanted to do."

One of MacPhail's duties has been to attend major-league scouting meetings with other Orioles officials. At the last one, he asked special projects director Ken Nigro when it would be appropriate for him to speak out.

"Never," Nigro told the neophyte.

The MacPhail in the young man is already bursting to come out.

* One of the most colorful figures in baseball, Broadway Charley Wagner, has been a regular at the stadium during this Orioles' homestand.

Wagner, a natty-looking 78-year-old, has been employed by the Boston Red Sox for 56 years, first as a pitcher, later as coach and minor-league manager. He's a scout now.

Wagner, known as Broadway for his flashy wardrobe, was asked how a man can stay happy working for one employer for 56 years. There's interesting psychology in his answer.

"In all these years," he said, "I've never felt that I was going to work. I've said I had to go to the ballpark, but I never said I had to go to work."

* Johns Hopkins is becoming to lacrosse what Miami of Ohio has been to football -- a producer of coaches. This summer four Hopkins players of recent vintage have been hired as assistant coaches at other colleges.

Dave Pietramala is the No. 1 assistant and recruiter for Baltimore native G.W. Mix at Penn. Brian Voelker, a first-team All-America defenseman, is the new top aide to Bill Tierney at Penn. Billy Dwan joined Dave Cottle's staff and will go to graduate school at Loyola. And Scott Marr has been hired by Bob Shillinglaw at Delaware.

* Either Navy's second-year football coach George Chaump has an unusually open mind or he can't make a decision.

At press day at Annapolis yesterday he was asked who'd be his quarterback. "We have 13 of them," he said, "six returnees and seven plebes." And who will be his kicker? "That," Chaump said, "is up for grabs."

The Middies open at home against Ball State Sept. 7.

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