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What is your favorite Olympic men's 1500?

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  • What is your favorite Olympic men's 1500?

    Garry Hill poses the question in his editorial today. With advance apologies if he or someone else already planned to post this, I will be the first to answer.

    1. 1984 ... Seb Coe's "Now believe in me!" victory
    2. 1968 ... Keino's incredible start and never really let up
    3. 2016 ... not a fan of sit and kick, but Centro's performance was really a masterpiece in doing what he had to in order to win.

    Unlike some other threads ranking best or worst OG performances, this is a "favorite" performance, so purely subjective.

  • #2
    Herb Elliott in Rome, 3:35.6 WR

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    • #3
      1936, 1964, 1976
      Not sure why 😁😁

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      • #4
        I have to agree with gh that Centro's win was one of the best, if not the best. The hugely negative splits made it more impressive. Going back to the WC in 2011, Centro never looks stressed in big races. To close in 50.5, apparently just doing enough calmly to hold off a mob of challengers, when you know it must have been a supreme effort, was a thing of beauty. And he was almost barged off the track late in the previous lap.
        Aside from that, being Irish, Delany in 56 has to be high up there for me. It didn't look like much, but that high knee stride at the end was so effective. Then falling to his knees and looking up with the face of a Dublin boy who didn't really know what he had just done ...

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        • #5
          My sentiments exactly, Berkeley! I was hugely happy when Delany won in in 1956, and a small country like Ireland must have been more than proud.
          For some reason, many have the idea that Centro's victory was a "sit and kick", but it's worth watching the video again to see how he'd dominated the race!
          Another favorite for me was the late Peter Snell's great victory in Tokyo. I've often felt that the other finalists in that race were so intimidated by Snell that they virtually handed him the gold medal.

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          • #6
            The Centro win still has me shaking my head.
            As I was watching and giving my wife unasked-for live commentary, my take was

            * Good for him for getting to the lead; it'll keep him out of traffic and on the rail.

            * Hmm, he's still in the lead. but that's OK cuz they're not going fast.

            * OK, 400 to go, here comes the stampede. Dudes are gonna pass him on the back stretch and he's gotta try and hold the lead to the next curve - big ask!

            * On the curve, still in the lead, but what did this surge cost him?

            * On the home straight; there's no way he can hold off the big kickers. Can he still medal?

            *At finish line . . . wait, what? . . . what just happened? . . . why did no one pass him? . . . did he just win the Olympic EFFIN Gold? I'm confused.



            She just looked at me and said, 'Babe, he was winning the whole way; isn't that what you're supposed to?'

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            • #7
              The key was pushing past Suleiman. He'd end up eighth if he got swallowed up. Once he took the lead back he had control and then Kiprop screwed it up for everyone else by getting in the way. Without Kiprop he likely medals but maybe not gold.

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              • #8
                Athens 2004 hands-down.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by DrJay View Post
                  Athens 2004 hands-down.
                  The combo of 2000 and 2004 a great double bill (unless you are Lagat).

                  Best part of this thread is rewatching these great races.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by noone View Post
                    Herb Elliott in Rome, 3:35.6 WR
                    I have to agree. Has anyone dominated a race more plus set an amazing World Record.

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                    • #11
                      Mexico City 1968.

                      Least favorite may have been Munich 1972. It was very anticlimactic without Ryun.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Chicago View Post
                        Mexico City 1968.

                        Least favorite may have been Munich 1972. It was very anticlimactic without Ryun.
                        I think the most blood-curdling shriek I've ever heard came when he went down in the heats; his wife Ann was sitting about a half-dozen rows behind me.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by noone View Post
                          Herb Elliott in Rome, 3:35.6 WR
                          That would be high up on my list.

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                          • #14
                            I lean toward was Montreal in 76. Probably biased because I was there in the crowd, but it was very cool that Walker owned the race so completely. A strong field but once Walker made his perfectly timed shift of gears on the backstretch it was clear no one would catch him.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by jc203 View Post
                              I lean toward was Montreal in 76. Probably biased because I was there in the crowd, but it was very cool that Walker owned the race so completely. A strong field but once Walker made his perfectly timed shift of gears on the backstretch it was clear no one would catch him.
                              Funny but this one is one of my least favorites. I thought he was a prohibitive favorite and at no point did I think he'd be beaten during the race. So the only thing, for me, that it came to was maybe a really fast run which it wasn't.

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