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Craziest, Strangest, Most Bizarre Things in Track & Field

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  • #16
    Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

    Yes, indeed -- remember the scene from It:s a Wonderful Life when George falls into the pool? Same school.

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    • #17
      Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

      The decathlon at the NCAAs in '78. Hayward didn't have lights then, so when things got dark, it got weird. The problem was the field size and the PV. They had two pits, but they were using a single runway. They thought(?) that vaulters with lower PBs would be able to do with a shorter runup. Well, not really. So they just had one monster flight, which lasted roughly forever. It got good and dark. UofO did have a new scoreboard, so someone figured out how to turn on all the lights. That helped, but not enough. Next, they asked the fans to drive their cars onto the outer lanes of the track and turn on headlights. Better, but not good. 10PM and it's javelin in the dark time. Have fun spotting that sucker. This is old model, flat throws and all. One kid told the official that he had hurt his shoulder and wouldn't be throwing his usual distance. Helpful. But he wasn't next in the order. The field official moved in, and whoops, the javlin went flying waaaay over his head. And then he did a strange thing. He chased the inflight jav (which had pretty much disappeared). I had visions of impalement. But nobody died. Except Steiner in the 1500. A truly wacky evening. It ended about midnight, forstalling a 3 day deca.

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      • #18
        Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

        I will have to add our steeplechase star, Ida Nilsson:s recent "Swedish record", to the weird and wacky of track and field. Something about our steeplers and strange events: 31 years ago the European Cup in Nice, France, Anders Gärderud was not recognized as having set a new European record due to the waterpit being just a few centimeters too shallow!

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        • #19
          Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

          Another odd, but true, fact (from The Weekend Australian):

          THE Commonwealth Games is the most extraordinary event in the sporting calendar.

          Its logic is not geography, like football's European Championship or like the Pan-American Games. It is not a global event, in which all who wish to play are invited, like the Olympics, the World Athletic Championships or the World Cup. It is based on politics.

          In other words, all nations that have sent representatives to Manchester were once colonised, conquered, exploited, enslaved and subjected by the host nation. So it is a bit odd that the nations choose to come here for a jolly festival of running, jumping and splashing about. >>

          http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/co ... 84,00.html

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          • #20
            Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

            Looking for a cool band? Try: http://www.trackandfield.org.uk/ ... uh...

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            • #21
              Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

              Walt, Is the elbow tactic legal? Witnesses something similar at NCAA Western Regional and was wondering if throwing elbows during a race is legal?

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              • #22
                Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                Regarding odd tracks, back in the 70's, Lee County (Kentucky) had a triangular shaped track that surrounded their baseball field. The "home stretch" was flat, with the other two legs either going down or coming up. The most unique feature of this track, though, was the fact that the 120 yard high hurdles featured a sharp curveof around 60 degrees. Kind of tough to keep your steps during the race.

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                • #23
                  Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                  I believe there used to be (and perhaps there still is) a track in Yonkers, NY, that was shaped like a D. It had a single home straight and the rest of the track was one long curve.

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                  • #24
                    Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                    Did anyone prefer Stanford:s old track to their new one? I could not stand running such long curves!

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                    • #25
                      Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                      A few years ago at some meet, didn't a female runner run off the track during a race, down the street, and jump off a bridge? Maybe she didn't jump off a bridge. Does anybody remember that (or some of it)?

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                      • #26
                        Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                        My college track was shaped like a pear; one bend almost of indoor specs and one massive wide one.

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                        • #27
                          Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                          that was an elite female collegian with severe emotional issues, whose name escapes me now, but she was one of the top distance runners in the country. I'll remember later, but someone will know.

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                          • #28
                            Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                            Had a couple of wacky incidents myself. Hit the upright with my head while warming up in Edmonton due to fluctuating gale-force winds. Warming up in torrential rain in Sweden in a GB vs Sweden meet: as I took off my foot aquaplaned and I fell ass over backwards with legs on pit and upper body on the track! Event was postponed a day. Memorable also as it was the first time I'd seen Sjoberg. Watching him after I was eliminated I clearly remember talking to my teammates and saying, "future WR holder". He was about 17. (Several years later, in LA, got a little inebriated with him and persuaded some chicks in Westwood we were judo medalists; tall, skinny but with unbelievable reach!...sorry if I'm repeating stories)

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                            • #29
                              Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                              Kathy Ormsby was the runner who jumped from the bridge in the middle of the 10k.

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                              • #30
                                Re: Craziest, Wackiest, Strangest Things in Track & Field

                                Since we got off to weird track shapes, the Oly stadium at Stockholm is (was?) one of the strangest. I was at the US-Nordica dual in '83. The stadium was old (at least 1912) with crenellated walls, a couple of towers. Looked a bit like a castle. The track had 6 lanes only and appeared to be roughly square. For the straightaway races, there wasn't much of an extension, so pretty immediatly after the finish, the sprinters/hurdlers had to make a turn, pretty sharp. I don't know if the stadium is still in use for Dagens Nyheter Games or if something new has been built. It would be hard to redo the track without rebuilding the stadium.

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