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PROFILE: What it takes to beat Usain Bolt

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  • PROFILE: What it takes to beat Usain Bolt

    3 years ago from my hospital bed, I watched as LSU's Xavier Carter made NCAA track history by winning 4 events at nationals. He was a mid 44 open performer, and a month later in just his first pro 200m, hit 19.63- from lane 8!
    I called someone and told them," that's the kinda guy that can beat Jeremy Wariner". Unfortunately, X's career has been marred with injuries, and hasn't allowed him to live up to his marvelous potential. Then, along came LaShawn Merritt. Same 400m ability...and also speedy. I knew that it would take someone with as much endurance as JW had, but with more foot speed. Yes. It would take speed. In essence, somebody in Michael Johnson's mold. So when Merritt dropped a sub 20, I said again" that's the guy!"
    And he did it.
    So what of Usain Bolt?
    What's it going to take to slay this beast? Afterall, we're talking about a FREAK who ran 9.69- the last 20m with arms stretched out & pounding his chest. A guy who hit old wr's throughout the rnds as though jogging. A guy who's making the world's fastest men look like children. Like some daycare supervisor during recess racing a bunch of 5yr olds. Alien. Martian. Whatever you wanna call him, Usain Bolt will probably go down as the greatest sprinter of all time by the end of his career. He could potentially take down the 400m wr if he got serious about it, and own every sprint record there is. I thought Wariner could go his entire career undefeated unless someone MJ-esque stepped forward. It happened. So what kind of animal would stop Bolt in his tracks? Afterall, he doesnt have Drummond or Greene's rt/start. I think it's somebody who can get away from him enough at the start without expending anything their tank, and of course, have the top end to hold him off. What's your take?
    Let's see your profile.

  • #2
    Tyson Gay type of runner in both the 100m and 200m, in particular a 100% Gay type of runner.

    Let me expound, again the thing that was and maybe still is amazing about Bolt's 9.69 was the 41 strides it took, never seen before. Can he continue to duplicate that stride pattern and if he does he will be very difficult to beat.

    Tyson is a fanstastic finisher in the 100m, his top end speed, again IMO is unmatched Bolt included, if Tyson nails his start, he can certainly defeat Bolt. So in other words, the type of runner who can beat Bolt, nail the start, extend top end speed and great maintenance.

    As far as the 200m, that runner must run a strong curve, can sustain his maxV....be a 400m type of runner with very good speed endurance, and foot speed. But also Tyson again can compete with Bolt in this event, because his strength in both these events is his finish, that's gives him a fighters chance at the end.
    on the road

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Speedfirst
      Tyson is a fanstastic finisher in the 100m, his top end speed, again IMO is unmatched Bolt included
      You really think so? I thought Bolt's strength was his top-end and once he got there it was only a matter of time. The only time they have raced in the 100m with Bolt being in the kinda form he is now is in New York last year. At the 50m mark the race seemed even, once Bolt's superior top end speed allowed him to pull away from Gay.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by TrainerPhil
        Originally posted by Speedfirst
        Tyson is a fanstastic finisher in the 100m, his top end speed, again IMO is unmatched Bolt included
        You really think so? I thought Bolt's strength was his top-end and once he got there it was only a matter of time. The only time they have raced in the 100m with Bolt being in the kinda form he is now is in New York last year. At the 50m mark the race seemed even, once Bolt's superior top end speed allowed him to pull away from Gay.
        No again it's Bolt's 41 strides, not so much his top end speed being superior to Tyson's. I'm not talking about so much that race, but again Bolt's 9.69, Tyson wasn't in that race to draw any comparisons.

        Tyson isn't called Mr. Top End Speed, for nothing 8-)

        Also I would definitely submit to you that Bolt was in better race form for Beijing than that Reebok race and also Tyson would've been for Beijing, that was evident at the trials.

        Also I would question very seriously if Bolt were at top end speed at 50m, too soon for top end.
        on the road

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by TrainerPhil
          Originally posted by Speedfirst
          Tyson is a fanstastic finisher in the 100m, his top end speed, again IMO is unmatched Bolt included
          You really think so? I thought Bolt's strength was his top-end and once he got there it was only a matter of time. The only time they have raced in the 100m with Bolt being in the kinda form he is now is in New York last year. At the 50m mark the race seemed even, once Bolt's superior top end speed allowed him to pull away from Gay.
          The race in New York was over from the gun as Bolt got an amazing start, by the 50 meter mark he already HAD a lead,, but the key thing is Bolt was NOT pulling away from Gay at that point on in the race.

          I think it remains to be seen that Gay has more topend speed than Bolt. But Bolt

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Speedfirst
            Tyson isn't called Mr. Top End Speed, for nothing 8-)
            It's all relative. I have not seen faster 10m splits than those posted for Bolt in the Olympic final last year. Also, he sustained those top end splits for longer than usual.

            Originally posted by guruof track
            but the key thing is Bolt was NOT pulling away from Gay at that point on in the race.
            Did he need to?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Speedfirst
              Originally posted by TrainerPhil
              Originally posted by Speedfirst
              Tyson is a fanstastic finisher in the 100m, his top end speed, again IMO is unmatched Bolt included
              You really think so? I thought Bolt's strength was his top-end and once he got there it was only a matter of time. The only time they have raced in the 100m with Bolt being in the kinda form he is now is in New York last year. At the 50m mark the race seemed even, once Bolt's superior top end speed allowed him to pull away from Gay.
              No again it's Bolt's 41 strides, not so much his top end speed being superior to Tyson's. I'm not talking about so much that race, but again Bolt's 9.69, Tyson wasn't in that race to draw any comparisons.

              Tyson isn't called Mr. Top End Speed, for nothing 8-)

              Also I would definitely submit to you that Bolt was in better race form for Beijing than that Reebok race and also Tyson would've been for Beijing, that was evident at the trials.
              How do you distinguish the two. Obviously it takes Bolt less strides to cover the 100m than the rest of his competition. But I thought top-end speed would be defined as the speed at which a runner is moving once he has stopped accelerating. It would appear to me that Bolt's top-end is superior to everyone in history, including Gay. BTW, no knock on Gay. If there was no Bolt, Gay would be THE star in track and field. He's an unreal talent...........

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Daisy
                Originally posted by Speedfirst
                Tyson isn't called Mr. Top End Speed, for nothing 8-)
                It's all relative. I have not seen faster 10m splits than those posted for Bolt in the Olympic final last year. Also, he sustained those top end splits for longer than usual.

                Originally posted by guruof track
                but the key thing is Bolt was NOT pulling away from Gay at that point on in the race.
                Did he need to?
                No he didnt need to, but if he doesnt get that start when they face each other again the results could be very different.

                Thats my point.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Daisy
                  Originally posted by Speedfirst
                  Tyson isn't called Mr. Top End Speed, for nothing 8-)
                  It's all relative. I have not seen faster 10m splits than those posted for Bolt in the Olympic final last year. Also, he sustained those top end splits for longer than usual.
                  I think you're confusing how I'm looking at top end speed, I'm not talking about running faster in maintenance, it's not about who is delecerating the slowest, so if you're in fact running faster at that point, you're slowing down faster.

                  Again the key to Usain time in Beijing was the 41 strides, let' look at this from a biomechanical and physics perspective. Each time you touch the track you're breaking, so if Bolt is touching the track 3-4 strides fewer than everyone else, this will result in him producing faster times, less ground contact/breaking.

                  So again if Bolt cannot maintain those 41 strides he allows the field back in the race and to compound that, if his start isn't a good one, there will be a race.
                  on the road

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by guruof track
                    but if he doesnt get that start when they face each other again the results could be very different.
                    Possibly. I don't have any 10m splits for a fast Gay race, so I don't know what his top end speed is like, but in Bejing Bolt strung three 0.82 splits together (See the figure below from speedendurance.com). That is unreal. None of the other great sprinters sustain the top end speed like that.



                    Originally posted by Speedfirst
                    it's not about who is delecerating the slowest, so if you're in fact running faster at that point, you're slowing down faster.
                    I'm confused. Surely it is all about getting your top speed AND maintaining it. Bolt appears to be better at both than all those listed in the figure above. Anyone got any 10m splits for Gay?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Daisy you coined it in your last phrase, sustain. Top end speed isn't sustaining, top end speed is maxV, there is a difference. Once you hit top end speed, you're now decelerating/maintenance, again the fact Bolt hit 41 strides was the big difference in that race, the sole reason for that race.
                      on the road

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Speedfirst
                        Top end speed isn't sustaining, top end speed is maxV, there is a difference.
                        I know they are distinct. But if he has the best ever top end speed AND he sustains that speed better than anyone else both make him the best yet.

                        This argument only makes sense if there is evidence that Gay is better at one of those phases. Is there evidence to suggest he has a better top speed or can sustain his top speed longer than Bolt when running a full effort race?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Daisy
                          Originally posted by Speedfirst
                          Top end speed isn't sustaining, top end speed is maxV, there is a difference.
                          I know they are distinct. But if he has the best ever top end speed AND he sustains that speed better than anyone else both make him the best yet.
                          Not splitting hairs, I'm not the one who has coined Tyson Mr. Top End Speed. Tyson extends his top end speed, as part of both his drive/acceleration phase to produce a longer top end speed, thus shortening his maintenance. Does top end speed mean only producing the faster times, no it doesn't it's about extending that was well. For example if you hit top end at 50m, now you have to maintain for 50 meters, but if you can hit it at 60-65m, now only 35-40 to maintain, I'll take that everyday over 50m.

                          If you ask any sprinter worth their salt, what would you want most, they will tell you to extend top end speed. This is in part why Tyson is called Mr. Top End Speed. Why he can make up for a not so great start.

                          I would venture to say that in Bolts 9.69 race, those 41 strides, middle to the end of that was benefitted as a result of the 41 strides. Can he duplicate this, we'll see.
                          on the road

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Daisy
                            Originally posted by Speedfirst
                            Top end speed isn't sustaining, top end speed is maxV, there is a difference.
                            I know they are distinct. But if he has the best ever top end speed AND he sustains that speed better than anyone else both make him the best yet.

                            This argument only makes sense if there is evidence that Gay is better at one of those phases. Is there evidence to suggest he has a better top speed or can sustain his top speed longer than Bolt when running a full effort race?
                            Tyson isn't considerd Mr. Top End Speed, simply off one race, he has established this trait in many races. Bolt's Beijing race may have been one of kind (41 strides) never to be duplicated. Bolt hasn't displayed routinely he can do this. Again Tyson extends his top end speed, creating a shorter maintenance phase. Again it's not just about who can get to top end the faster, but who can extend and even more importantly now maintain it more effectively. I still say Tyson is the best at that, certainly folks can decide to disagree with that.


                            Mr. Top End Speed is below:
                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijnmQb0Yk9c
                            on the road

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Speed is simply turnover x stride length. Gay has A+ turnover and A stride-length. Bolt has A turnover and A++ stride-length. All things being equal (which they NEVER are), Bolt wins. But those who think Bolt is unbeatable, make the same mistake Eldrick always did, assuming an athlete is a machine that cannot make mistakes. Bolt CAN be beat if Tyson is on his A+ game and Bolt is just on his A game. But . . . Bolt proved last year that he DOES rise to the occasion (as opposed to AP, who sank), so yes, Bolt is still the prohibitive fave.

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