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Sprint Relays a Modest Proposal


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  • Sprint Relays a Modest Proposal

    I realize that this is supposed to be for non-WC matters, but I didn't want to do it on both 4x1s.

    With the US's continuing miseries on the sprint relays, maybe it might behoove USATF to add a 4x100 event in their championships which select WC teams and, of course, the OT. Instead of selecting from the required 4 top finishers, plus others who participate at the meet, why not select the team which wins the meet? The athletes could form their own teams (I suppose shoe contracts might make this a non started), but those individual teams could become just that, a team. It might forego WRs, but those are probably out of reach, in my lifetime anyway. If the team can't get the damn baton around the track, they can't medal, so times are kinda immaterial.

    Even with that, still a pretty damn good meet. If this seems a bit incoherent, sorry. I have just finished a 24 hour trip back from Berlin, and I'm really not sure what time zone I'm in. Zoned is probably the word. And, so to bed.

  • #2
    4x100 at USATF

    Mike , This idea was brought up in 1996 by Carl Lewis. He said they could pick teams and for example his team would be SMTC. Mike Marsh, Leroy Burrell, Floyd Heard , and King Carl. VS . A team of Jon Drummond, Maurice Greene, Michael Johnson, and Dennis Mitchell. The winner represents the US. The two alternates would be any two from the team. No one listens, but i thought it was a great idea.


    • #3
      So Tyson Gay signs a big contract with, say, the Chinese shoe company, and nobody else does. So he never competes in the OG/WC relay? Bad idea.

      We won't even get into the adding of more racing to the meet, when over-racing is already a paramount concern for some people.


      • #4
        I say bring back the Relay Program. I believe USATF was a little hasty in getting rid it in the first place.

        While it probably could've been tweak'd, I believe it exposed a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't receive this type of consideration to the expectations of the National coaching staff (particularly the relay coaches). I believe the folks who underwent this process became familiar with those expectations so when they actually made a National Team they knew what was expected of them. A lot of our current names who made the last couple of Nationals Teams (as well as the Olympic Team) got some great experience out of that program.

        The question now is the current hit/miss structure we're currently operating under doesn't seem to be working. What will the new paradigm be? How do we get people familiar with the ways our relays are supposed to work when they're spread out all over the country? I believe this is these are the questions that need to be addressed and answered in order to come up with a concrete policy on establishing relays and leaving the politicking on who runs what out of the process. National Team Coaches (or whatever the current policy is) should be establishing the relay order...NOT agents or proxies.

        Just my two cents.... :wink:


        • #5
          Wont help. American athletes already run more relays than any other nation thanks to NCAA.
          The solution is practise and better coaching