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The USA 4x1 Debacle


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  • #16
    Re: The USA 4x1 Debacle

    Originally posted by Marlow

    Back on topic: all a good relay team needs is some good old-fashioned trial & error. What seems to be the correct take-off mark and take-off speed works completely differently in the real-world with fast opponents putting pressure on you. The ONLY way to prepare is in battle, preferably at lower stakes than a global championship.
    I completely agree with you on that part.

    From your original post the only part I disagree with is your first point about Doug taking the blame for the relay teams being disqualified. Yes the teams need to practice their handoffs in competitions during the season. But whether they do 10 relay races or just 1 during the season, the fact remains that once the baton is on the track, all responsibility is now with the athlete. The coaches and higher up have done everything they can up to that point. They are in no control of the baton going around the track.


    • #17
      The economic reality is that the top runners follow the money and since that often sends them (relay team mates0 in different directions, it is going to be impossible to get them all together for any extended length of time. Furthermore, where are 10 elite track meets where the 4X100 is run and how are you going to get other nations to those meets? Perhaps they need to include the 4X100 relay in the Diamond League or some type of series specifially for the relay like they do the marathon.

      A event that only really matters once every 2 to 4 year is not going to matter as much as an athlete's bread and butter event - ever.


      • #18
        Originally posted by jpaule
        Furthermore, where are 10 elite track meets where the 4X100 is run and how are you going to get other nations to those meets?
        I was being hypothetical with the 10 meet thing...


        • #19
          Re: The USA 4x1 Debacle

          Originally posted by Marlow
          Let's do some CONSTRUCTIVE criticism, i.e., where do we go from here?


          1. Doug Logan must personally take responsibilty for this. Of course it is not his fault, but by taking personal responsibility, he can fully appreciate what must be done by HIM to rectify the situation. If heads need to roll, HE rolls them. If results are not forthcoming, HE makes changes. The Captain always goes down with the ship. He paid high LIP-service to instituting change, but when London rolled around, it was business as usual. Of course that was a complicated situation, but this is a complicated problem and needs a thorough re-booting, nay, a reformatting of the hard drive. Maybe all new hardware and software!

          2. I think the glass is clearing half-EMPTY now. Our previous successes were SERENDIPITY - sheer blind luck (not that we don't always have the raw speed). Even if my last statement is false, we should ASSUME it's true, so the necessary paradigm shift can take place.

          3. We need athletes who will commit to not only the practice time, but a MINIMUM of 3 (THREE) high level meets outside of the USA. You can NOT simulate big meet pressure anywhere but in big meets.

          4. Barring injury we can't 'save' athletes for the Final. Part of the necessary chemistry is running with the people who will be there in the Final.

          This current situation would be embarrassing for a high school team. You can sit there and blame everything on just bad timing, bad luck, complex personnel (and personal) issues, but what will that get you? Right back where we are now. This is NOT Rocket Science. We can do this. As a very minimum we need to try and we simply have NOT. Boo on us.
          I think you missed the main advice
          If you will look at American miss ups they are mostly in the qualification rounds and usually involves the alternate member. It doesn't meter if you train the first team 10 times a year if you do not ran this team in qualification and never reach the final.
          Seoul 1988, Stuttgart 1993 (w), Athens 1997 and yesterday are only few example of this pattern.
          Allyson Felix should have been their yesterday and then most likely the US would advanced to the final and probably won.
          This is not to say that the first team do not get it wrong, but alternating teams increase the chances of a failure considerably.