Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Happy 70th Birthday, Pre

Collapse

Unconfigured Ad Widget

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Happy 70th Birthday, Pre

    Today.
    He was a month younger than I.
    I saw him run the epic 1969 PAC-8 CC championship duel on the Stanford Golf Course with Lindgren when we were callow frosh.
    That race made me a life-long fan, and while I mourn his passing when we were 24 (the year I got married), I sure am thankful he was a 'part' of my life.
    Go Pre!
    Last edited by Atticus; 01-25-2021, 09:17 PM.

  • #2
    Nice post, Atticus. I, too, was at the Stanford Golf Course in 1969 for that cross country race. What a race it was. Another Pre race that really stands out for me was the 1972 Olympic Trials 5,000 in Eugene. It was maybe the loudest crowd noise I ever remember at Hayward Field. Both Pre and George Young wouldn't give in and the Eugene crowd, I think, helped Pre to a new American record (13:22.4). Young ran about 13:29. Pre's Olympic race in Munich was also a lot of fun, however I believe he made a couple of costly mistakes with 800 to go in that final (I think it cost him an Olympic medal). Pre, as most know, loved to lead in a race. That worked well in the U.S., however the Olympic final was a lot tougher race. Great memories. Thank you, Atticus.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by DoubleRBar View Post
      I believe he made a couple of costly mistakes with 800 to go in that final (I think it cost him an Olympic medal).
      I think he went as hard as he could for as long as he could, which is why we loved him. He knew he couldn't out-kick the kickers, so he had to try and break them. I always felt that 4th was his fate. In 1976, the plan was to get out so far, no one could catch him. I like to think he did.

      Comment


      • #4
        Have to love a guy who would say, "I'm gonna go out at world record pace and then pick it up in the last mile and put crap in their legs"

        As opposed to everybody today, with "Well, I finished 13th, but I ran my very best so I'm really happy and proud."

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post
          As opposed to everybody today, with "Well, I finished 13th, but I ran my very best so I'm really happy and proud."
          Or, 'I'm going to sit in this pack that's going slower than a Junior High pace, and I really think I can outkick all the people that I know for a fact have better kicks than me.'

          Comment


          • #6
            After the Munich race. Pre was quoted as saying the terrorist attack shook him up so badly, it affected his performance. With all the respect I have for him, that quote, if accurate does not do his reputation proud.

            Comment


            • #7
              Perhaps watching Dave Bedford's failure to run away from the field in the 10,000 influenced Steve Prefontaine's tactics in the 5,000.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by noone View Post
                After the Munich race. Pre was quoted as saying the terrorist attack shook him up so badly, it affected his performance. With all the respect I have for him, that quote, if accurate does not do his reputation proud.
                ??!! . . . unless, of course . . . it IS true.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Atticus View Post
                  I think he went as hard as he could for as long as he could, which is why we loved him. He knew he couldn't out-kick the kickers, so he had to try and break them. I always felt that 4th was his fate. In 1976, the plan was to get out so far, no one could catch him. I like to think he did.
                  The consensus seems to be by those of you that knew him best and knew the era that he ran, that 4th was quite a good outcome considering the quality of the field in Munich.

                  But having watched only the video of the race more than a few times I cant help but think that he did make a few tactical errors and used up vital energy that cost him quite a few yards in that final lap. What is he doing running half the race in lane 2, its just not wise. Viren is always at all times tucked into the rail, when he makes a move to take the lead, he steps on the gas and goes to the lead, then he he lets others pass him always keeping his rail position. Viren knew how to control the pace without costing himself much at all. Contrast that with Pre who runs the entire race in lane two, putting himself in an uncomfortable jockying position. Its just heart breaking.. He effectively decided that he should have to run 5020m while his competitors run 5000m.

                  I think he could have medaled had his head been a little more cold and careful.

                  We had Billy Mills, Jim Ryun and Pre all within 10 years..your generation was spoiled !!!
                  Last edited by user4; 01-26-2021, 09:07 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Good analysis, user4. I was in Munich for the 1972 Olympics and I agree with your thoughts. Pre did run too wide for too long and wasted a lot of energy doing that. In the final 800, he made two major sprint moves, I believe, too far from the finish line (one about 600 to go). I also believe he could have taken that bronze medal had he run a smarter race. As it was, he "died" with about 150 to go and did not have his usual strong finish. He left that strong finish on the opposite side of the track with about 600 meters to the finish line.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It's not only Prefontaine 's 70th birthday. The holder of the oldest world record turned 70 today.
                      ​​​​

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Jarmila!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yep Jarmila

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There will always be speculation about what Pre might have done on and off the track if he had lived.

                            On the track, would he have moved up to the 10,000 in 1976 and maybe medaled? And after the 1980 boycott, would he have stuck around for the inaugural WC in 1983 with the 1984 OG in L.A. his swan song in 1984 at Age 33?

                            Off the track, he would have been furious about the 1980 boycott. That might have given him impetus to testify before Congress in the late 1970s as Shorter did in order to get the Amateur Sports Act of 1978 passed.

                            Maybe he would have gotten involved with the athletes in the formation of TAC/USA (now USATF) in 1980. Bowerman did not get involved in TAC/USA much but knew the players and could have advised Pre. The main NCAA coaches at the beginning of TAC were Carnes, Giegengack, and Tuppeny.

                            Ultimately, would Pre have become CEO of USATF instead of Craig Masback in 1997? And would he still be involved today as an elder statement? We will never know.
                            Last edited by Halfmiler2; 01-27-2021, 01:14 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              "Pre did run too wide for too long and wasted a lot of energy doing that."

                              Perhaps a more severe example of such running was the 1976 Olympic 5000 when Dick Quax was in lane 2 rounding the last turn and Rod Dixon was almost in lane 3.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X