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    AS
    Senior Member

  • AS
    replied
    Originally posted by paulthefan
    ... But the regression of AUS in sprinting seems to go well beyond this.
    Let's look for genuine statistical evidence of a decline:
    from http://www.athletics.com.au/community/s ... gs/alltime

    Men's 100m:

    Fastest 100m runners prior to 1980
    10.1h Gary Holdwsworth (1967)
    10.1h Greg Lewis (1973) - also ran 10.46 in 1974
    10.1h Graham Haskell (1973) - also ran 10.42 in 1974
    7 x 10.2h, plus a 10.42 & 10.44

    Australia had 3 men rank in TFN Top 10 between 1947-56 (Treloar, Degruchy & Hogan) and 1 in the 1960s (Holdwsworth).

    Fastest 100m runners since 1980
    1 sub 10s
    2 more sub 10.10
    5 more sub10.20
    10 more sub 10.30
    13 more sub 10.40

    I don't believe Australia has had a TFN Top 10 ranking man in this event since Holdsworth (TFN site has not been updated since 2001)

    Men's 200m:

    Fastest 200m runners prior to 1980
    20.06 Peter Norman (1968)
    20.53 Greg Lewis (1968) - also ran 10.46 in 1974
    20.4h Paul Narracott (1979)
    20.6yh Jim Carlton (1932)
    20.5h Peter Fitzgerald (1976)
    3 x 20.6h

    Australia had 3 men rank in TFN Top 10 between 1948-52 (Treloar & Bartram) and 1 in the 1960s (Norman).

    Fastest 200m runners since 1980
    2 sub 20.20
    3 more sub 20.40
    7 more 20.50

    Capobianco and Marsh ranked in TFN Top 10 in 1990s

    Men's 400m:

    Fastest 400m runners prior to 1980
    45.40 Rick Mitchell (1976)
    45.61 Ross Wilson (1970)
    45.7h Steve Longden-Gee (1974)
    45.7h John Higham (1978)
    45.86 Colin McQueen (1979)

    Australia had 3 men rank in TFN Top 10 between 1948-57 (Curotta, Carr & Gosper) and 1 in the 1970s (Mitchell).

    Fastest 400m runners since 1980
    1 sub 44.50
    6 more sub 45.00
    9 more 45.50

    Mitchell and Clark ranked in the 1980s, and Steffensen has in the 00s.

    Women's 100m:

    Fastest 100m runners prior to 1980
    11.20 Boyle (1968)
    11.33 Dianne Bowering-Burge (1968)
    11.0h Denise Robertson-Boyd (1973)
    11.35 Helen Edwards-Davey (1979) - and 11.1h (1979)
    11.4e Marilyn Black (1964)
    11.50 Pam Kilborn-Ryan (1968)
    2 x 11.2h, 5 x 11.3h

    Australia had 18 women rank in TFN Top 10 in the years 1956-76.

    Fastest 100m runners since 1980
    3 sub 11.20s
    5 more sub 11.30
    5 more sub 11.40 (including Breen's 11.33 from weekend)

    I don't believe Australia has had a TFN Top 10 ranking woman in this event since Boyle in 1976 (TFN site has not been updated since 2001)

    Women's 200m:

    Fastest 200m runners prior to 1980
    22.45 Boyle (1972)
    22.88 Jenny Lamy (1968)
    23.18 Black (1964)
    22.9yh Margaret Burvill (1964)
    23.0h Bowering-Burge (1968)
    23.0h Sue Jowett (1976)
    23.2yh Betty Cuthbert (1960)

    Australia had 16 women rank in TFN Top 10 in the years 1956-78.

    Fastest 200m runners since 1980
    3 sub 22.40
    3 more sub 22.80
    6 more 23.00

    Gainsford-Taylor and Freeman ranked in TFN Top 10 in 1990s & 2000s

    The huge drop in times in women's 400m makes that discussion a less useful one (and I must get back to work ), but it is worth noting that that Australia had 5 women in TFN Top 10 prior to 1980 and 2 since.

    All in all, the story would seem to be one of much greater "decline" on the women's side than men. And I would argue the support for a decline on the men's is pretty weak. Interestingly, Boyle was really the last of the women before Gainsford-Taylor and Freeman revived the fortunes. There was a huge "bubble" in the women's side during the 1950s and early 1960s, which as I argued perhaps reflects Australia's relative unscathedness from wartime loss.

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  • paulthefan
    Senior Member

  • paulthefan
    replied
    Originally posted by AS
    Originally posted by rasb
    AS,
    Did I miss something? You referred to Aussie female achievements, I believe.
    Are you overlooking Landy, Elliott, Clarke, and several other World leaders in Men's distance running from Australia? ....
    Australia did "overperform" in men's distance during the 1950s and 1960s, as did the US. Then the rest of the world (i.e. Europe) recovered from WW2 and the Africans appeared. The pool was very, very shallow in that period (as much as we like to glamorise it).

    Elliot was a giant in any era... he would be a 1500m champ today, and he never reached his potential.

    Leave a comment:

  • AS
    Senior Member

  • AS
    replied
    Originally posted by rasb
    AS,
    Did I miss something? You referred to Aussie female achievements, I believe.
    Are you overlooking Landy, Elliott, Clarke, and several other World leaders in Men's distance running from Australia? I don't think either this wave, or the wave of Kiwis from the 60's and 70's fall conveniently under your title of exceptionalism. There was a time when a couple of small nations from "way down under" took the world by storm in Men's distance running, and it was not a matter of 1 or 2 individuals, as much as a culture of excellence in these events.
    Australia did "overperform" in men's distance during the 1950s and 1960s, as did the US. Then the rest of the world (i.e. Europe) recovered from WW2 and the Africans appeared. The pool was very, very shallow in that period (as much as we like to glamorise it).

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  • paulthefan
    Senior Member

  • paulthefan
    replied
    Originally posted by AS
    The problem with all of this discussion is the issue of exceptionalism...

    The gist of the problem appears to be that somehow Australian athletics has "failed" for not producing another Raelene Boyle...

    The same could be said for a lot of nations:
    - NZ had failed to produce another John Walker or Yvette Williams
    - Russia has failed to produce another Valerie Borzov
    - Tunisia has failed to produce another Mohammed Gammoudi
    This fact was mentioned previously in this thread. A nation can not duplicate its absolute best year in and year out and we have mentioned this fact above. But the regression of AUS in sprinting seems to go well beyond this.

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  • rasb
    Senior Member

  • rasb
    replied
    AS,
    Did I miss something? You referred to Aussie female achievements, I believe.
    Are you overlooking Landy, Elliott, Clarke, and several other World leaders in Men's distance running from Australia? I don't think either this wave, or the wave of Kiwis from the 60's and 70's fall conveniently under your title of exceptionalism. There was a time when a couple of small nations from "way down under" took the world by storm in Men's distance running, and it was not a matter of 1 or 2 individuals, as much as a culture of excellence in these events.

    Leave a comment:

  • AS
    Senior Member

  • AS
    replied
    The problem with all of this discussion is the issue of exceptionalism...

    The gist of the problem appears to be that somehow Australian athletics has "failed" for not producing another Raelene Boyle...

    The same could be said for a lot of nations:
    - NZ had failed to produce another John Walker or Yvette Williams
    - Russia has failed to produce another Valerie Borzov
    - Tunisia has failed to produce another Mohammed Gammoudi
    - Greece has failed to produce another Spiridon Louis

    Clearly Panama has revived its fortunes by nurturing the rise of Irving Saldino.

    These are all farcical examples, as these athletes were often exceptions in there own lifetimes (or curious historical anamolies).

    As was noted earlier, Peter Norman lowered a 36 year old record. Sometimes in smaller nations with smaller pools of possible champions we might have to wait around a generation or two for the "next big thing". Australia is not a powerhouse athletics nation. And it rarely has been. There was a decade or so of over-performance on the women's side in the 1950s and early 60s which reflected in many ways the post-war hardships and small competitive pool for that gender. Ever since, Australia's periodic flashes of brilliance have typically been simply because a very talented exception popped up (plus some oportunistic "early adopting" of new events and concentration on less popular events).

    The "rare talents" (I'm excluding imports such as Markov):
    - Boyle, Freeman, Darren Clark, de Castella, Steve Hooker, McLellan, Rick Mitchell, Ralph Doubell, Pam Ryan, Pittman, Mottram, Lisa Martin/Ondieki

    The "early adopters":
    - Emma George, Melissa Rollinson


    The "early adopters"

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  • Mennisco
    Senior Member

  • Mennisco
    replied
    Originally posted by Speedster

    We tend to get one great female sprinter every generation, with us being spoilt for choice leading into Sydney. If Sally focuses on the 100m for a season we might see her get close to 11.00 as she has the start, strength and mental attitude to get her there, however I am not sure she would be keen to move away from the hurdles where she has had such great success.
    Much talk of Boyle's exploits in 1972 on this thread, and Germans, Ossie and Western [1976]. McLellan finally took the Aussie record under the winning 12.59 from Munich 1972, achieved by East German Annelie Ehrhardt. Still no Aussie to run better than the winning 11.07 from '72. McLellan is such a damn good hurdler she'd be nuts to stray from that event, though I won't be surprised when she takes the Oz record sub 11, which I predict she'll do this winter with a 10.99. Following that, she'll break the world indoor 60 hurdles record.

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  • Speedster
    Senior Member

  • Speedster
    replied
    Boyle had the two elements needed to be a great sprinter. She had the physical gifts to run fast AND she had the right mental attitude and strength to run the rounds and win. Australia hasn't really had anyone with that double since Freeman. Boyle also had the technique that would put Australia's current crop of sprinters to shame, there is a great photo of her in her bio in a great sprint position.

    We tend to get one great female sprinter every generation, with us being spoilt for choice leading into Sydney. If Sally focuses on the 100m for a season we might see her get close to 11.00 as she has the start, strength and mental attitude to get her there, however I am not sure she would be keen to move away from the hurdles where she has had such great success. Maybe Mel Breen will be the next one to take up the challenge?

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  • Mennisco
    Senior Member

  • Mennisco
    replied
    Originally posted by eldrick

    she didn't break 11.2 in that meet...........21.7 can't be done off 11.2
    I agree, 21.7 is a far stretch. But she said herself she had trained exclusively for the 200, and 100 champion Richter said the Germans considered her the favorite for the 200. Her 11.23 in the dead air of Montreal with a 0.0 wind was sufficiently better than her 11.23 in Munich to project a significant improvement over the '72 22.45; she'd likely have won the gold with ~ 22.30, or maybe even a WR.

    Compare Boyle's 11.23 on that Montreal track with Marlies Gohr's 11.17 3 years later, behind Ashford's 11.06. The 1979 times were hindered by a slight headwind. Another thing: Boyle running the 100 when her best event would have easily been the 400 makes it easy to misunderstand how great a 200 sprinter she was. She nearly mowed down Stecher in the Munich homestretch. 10 meters out, it was either "girl's" race.

    There's not been one single Yankee white girl who was remotely the calibre of Raelene Boyle. Funny, given how many Irish-Americans there are.

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  • paulthefan
    Senior Member

  • paulthefan
    replied
    Originally posted by eldrick
    apologies to carr, 20.36 auto on cinders is maybe 0.4 - 0.5s quicker on synthetic making him an ~ 19.86 - 19.96 guy back in '64

    as for decade rule, i see no problem with a coupla og cycles after any run being part of contemporary era - hence any clockings between '72 - '80 will be contemporary for comparison purposes - you just have to decide what cycles you want to use ( '64 - '72, '68 - '76, '72 - '80 )
    agree on Carr, I was going to say the same above but thought it would only get us off the issue. Carr was a giant and as we have said together many times his performance in '64 is not appreciated enough.

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  • eldrick
    Senior Member

  • eldrick
    replied
    apologies to carr, 20.36 auto on cinders is maybe 0.4 - 0.5s quicker on synthetic making him an ~ 19.86 - 19.96 guy back in '64

    as for decade rule, i see no problem with a coupla og cycles after any run being part of contemporary era - hence any clockings between '72 - '80 will be contemporary for comparison purposes - you just have to decide what cycles you want to use ( '64 - '72, '68 - '76, '72 - '80 )

    Leave a comment:

  • paulthefan
    Senior Member

  • paulthefan
    replied
    Originally posted by eldrick
    paulie & mennie
    - i'd say carr's 20.3 on cinders was worth a 20.0 - 20.1 on a synthetic track - better value than norman's 20.06A ( probably a 20.2 basic )
    your arguments are scatological, no one ever said Norman was Carr's equal only that your ad-hoc "decade" rule was useless.

    - x-man may be behind King/deloach because of lack of metal, but 19.6 at aged 21y & if fit, reason to believe he wouda improved, means i don't see any reason why his talent is significantly inferior to those 2
    xman behind king.....that is an understatement. Deloach was young too.. .. all we have are the results. you dont see xman behind them, but Xman is .4 off the WR and King and Del were at or better than it.


    - boyle had pbs of ?11.23/22.45 - they were good for early 70s, but if you look at that "era" of the '70s, they are not outstanding - richter was 11.01 by '76 ( & another coupla quick fgr gals ) & evelyn 11.05, irene did 22.21 in '74 & by decade end, leaving out ddr, evelyn was down to 21.83 !
    You have no point it seems?... No one said Boyle was Ashford's equal, .. the argument here is whether Boyle was far far ahead of todays AUS crop of sprinters. It is the case that Boyle is/was far far superior to what AUS is producing now. Your use of the red-herring is quite effective, but the readers here are not dogs and wont fall for it.

    Nevertheless I doubt that Boyle was incapable of sub 22 dashing, but that is not the point, the point is that today AUS should have sub 22 dashers but rather struggles to keep sub 23 dashers, something Boyle could run at 17years.


    if you want to knock 1/4s off boyle's 100m & 1/2s off her 200, then you'd have to extend those to like of irene/evelyn/richter - making them 10.75 - 10.80 ( evelyn did eventually run this 4y later ) & 21.3 for evelyn ( 21.71 for irene ) !
    Evelyn is probably the greatest 200m female of all time. We would have to look carefully at all the conditions of each of their PRs to know what to adjust to today.

    the argument for american/carib sprinters revolutionising the depth-pool is same as africans in middle distance running today - if you had the sheer numbers of kennster, geb, komen, tergat, etc like talent running in '70s ( talent was there ) as they have been in this era, there is little/no chance the likes of viren/puttemans/quax/bedford/pre/etc wouda got anywhere near a gold
    This argument may have some merit, but it does not answer the question posed by the thread: Why are AUS sprint performance levels degrading ? Could a Boyle compete (finalist) today? These are two closely linked questions.. The answer to the later is yes, that case has been made here and should be obvious. More importantly it has implications for answering the first.

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  • eldrick
    Senior Member

  • eldrick
    replied
    Originally posted by mal
    And when Boyle was false started out of the 200 in the big meet, she was ready to go 21.7
    ???

    she didn't break 11.2 in that meet

    no matter how "unalike" the 200 is to the 100, it is still determined by how fast your 100 ability is at the absolute extreme

    for an 11.2 gal, if she ran absolutely flat-out 1st 100, you'd have to add ~0.2 to 0,25s for the curve ( tight curves back then, more like 0.15 - 0.20 for modern tracks ) -> ~ 11.40 to 11.45

    for an "ideal" athlete, best 200 time off that is

    ~ ( 2*100m split ) - 0.95 = ~ 21.85 to 21.95

    fastest an 11.2 gal can theoretically run a 200 is about that & does require the impossible of putting in 100m pb effort on the curve & holding on for another 100m !

    21.7 can't be done off 11.2

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  • mal
    Senior Member

  • mal
    replied
    If Boyle had lived in a country where every move of an athlete had been reported, you'd have been more impressed than just reading her official record.

    She was 16 heading to Mexico. She was not allowed to leave Australia to compete in Europe pre-Munich. She came out of the winter and raced. That's how it was in those days in Australia.

    Comparing Oz athletes from the 70's is not just about the track and the timing. It's about the preparation and the opportunity.

    And when Boyle was false started out of the 200 in the big meet, she was ready to go 21.7. I was in her squad as she prepared. She was flying, and approaching her true potential.

    Raelene Boyle was one of the greatest competitors track has seen. If she'd lived in the UK or the US, she'd be given more credit than she currently receives.

    Whichever way you look at it, Australian sprinters have gone backward.

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  • eldrick
    Senior Member

  • eldrick
    replied
    paulie & mennie

    - i'd say carr's 20.3 on cinders was worth a 20.0 - 20.1 on a synthetic track - better value than norman's 20.06A ( probably a 20.2 basic )

    - x-man may be behind King/deloach because of lack of metal, but 19.6 at aged 21y & if fit, reason to believe he wouda improved, means i don't see any reason why his talent is significantly inferior to those 2

    - boyle had pbs of ?11.23/22.45 - they were good for early 70s, but if you look at that "era" of the '70s, they are not outstanding - richter was 11.01 by '76 ( & another coupla quick fgr gals ) & evelyn 11.05, irene did 22.21 in '74 & by decade end, leaving out ddr, evelyn was down to 21.83 !

    if you want to knock 1/4s off boyle's 100m & 1/2s off her 200, then you'd have to extend those to like of irene/evelyn/richter - making them 10.75 - 10.80 ( evelyn did eventually run this 4y later ) & 21.3 for evelyn ( 21.71 for irene ) !

    common-sense tells us such huge improvements are very unlikely - boyle nowdays maybe somewhere around 11.10/22.20 - these are times of ~ gevaert who has been best non-american/carib sprinter of past few years

    the argument for american/carib sprinters revolutionising the depth-pool is same as africans in middle distance running today - if you had the sheer numbers of kennster, geb, komen, tergat, etc like talent running in '70s ( talent was there ) as they have been in this era, there is little/no chance the likes of viren/puttemans/quax/bedford/pre/etc wouda got anywhere near a gold

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