Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Track and Field 2011: A glimpse and reminder of potential competitors in the 2012 Summer Olympics

By Evan Troxel (Associate Editor of Sports Content)
To begin with, instead of talking about Track and Field and why it’s so great let’s first talk about the negatives of it.  First, Track and Field like any Olympic sport is rarely nationally televised except when it’s the annual National Championships (except in Olympic years when it’s a nation’s Olympic Trials) and the Olympics itself.  Second and finally, a person probably won’t know what goes on in Track and Field except when newspapers and online articles show in big bold letters that someone broke some record. 
Now let’s look at the positives of Track and Field.  Currently, the world-record holder for the 100 meters is Usain Bolt of Jamaica with a time of 9.58 seconds.  The closest USA Trackster to Bolt is Tyson Gay with a time of 9.68 seconds which he set on June 29, 2008 during the 2008 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.  The tail wind speed was 4.1 m/s which is a wind aided time and I think wind aided times should be world records no matter how fast or slow the wind is blowing—God’s in control! This was the fastest 100 meters in history until Bolt ran faster on August 16, 2009 at the World Championships in Berlin.  Bolt’s time of 9.69 seconds at the 2008 Summer Olympics technically wasn’t a world record because Gay had the “wind aided” record but he didn’t get credit for it from track officials because the wind blew too much. 
Honestly, I think Usain Bolt can run faster than he did at the 2008 Summer Olympics and I think he can still run faster now that he’s the reigning 100 Meter All-Time World Record Holder.  I bet Usain Bolt can run at least 8.99 seconds (maybe even faster) for the 100 Meter Dash (if he really tries and gives it his all).  I’d love to see how fast he can run 400 meters and/or the mile.   
Before Bolt and Gay set world records, Carl Lewis ran a time of 9.78 seconds at the 1988 US Olympic trials in Indianapolis but it was wind aided, so that didn’t count according to track officials which I think it really did.  Obadele Thompson of Barbados ran a wind-aided 9.69 in El Paso, Texas in April 1996 which stood as the fastest ever 100m time for 12 years until Tyson Gay's June 29, 2008 performance.
Now, the 200 Meter Dash World Record is 19.19 seconds again by Usain Bolt.  Michael Johnson of the United States is 2nd on that list by running 19.32 seconds.  Tyson Gay is 3rd on that list with a time of 19.58 seconds.
The best 400 Meter Dash time is by Michael Johnson with a time of 43.18 seconds.  Jeremy Wariner also of the U.S.A. is third on that list with a time of 43.45 seconds.  The fastest 800 Meter run is by Kenya’s David Rudisha with a time of 1 minute and 41.01 seconds.
The fastest mile ever ran is by Hicham El Guerrouj of Morocco in 1999 which was timed in 3 minutes and 43.13 seconds.  The fastest 5,000 meters ever ran is by Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia in 2004 with a time of 12 minutes 37.35 seconds.  Finally, the best marathon time ever is 2 hours 3 minutes and 59 seconds held by Haile Gebrselassie of Ethiopia which he set on September 28, 2008 in Berlin, Germany.
I thought it would be neat to bring the best running times of all-time together in this article.  I like to run and that would be cool to someday run within a minute behind the all-time world record mile and/or run within an hour behind the all-time marathon world record if I don’t break these records myself.
I like sports a lot and I even don’t pay much attention to Track and Field.  So by not getting into more detail with Track & Field, to conclude this article let’s relive the greatest moments from the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China.  One moment was when the Men’s and Women’s USA Basketball Teams won the gold medal.  Arguably the coolest moment of the Olympics (for USA fans) is when the USA Men’s 4 x 100 freestyle relay swimming team beat the French and took gold.  Finally, we all remember that Michael Phelps won 8 gold medals at a single Olympic games.

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