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  • Very Close Competition

    Happy 57th birthday today (Tuesday) to an Olympic champion who won the Olympic gold medal by a very close margin.

    This athlete competed in two Olympic Games and placed fifth in the second of those two Games.

    Our birthday athlete won the Olympic gold medal approximately 5,679 miles (9,139 km) from this person's place of birth.

    It might help you to know that our birthday champion won a World Indoor gold medal and a bronze medal as well.

    Of course you can skip the hurdles when thinking of our birthday athlete's Olympic event.

    About seven months after turning 24 years of age, this athlete won the Olympic gold medal.

    Good luck with this one and please have fun with it. Who is this Olympic champion?

  • #2
    Claudia Losch, fair and square.

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    • #3
      Happy birthday today (57) to Claudia Losch and very good, Karl. You know Claudia won the women's shot put in Los Angeles (1984), but you may not remember that she won the gold medal on her final put (20.48). Mihaela Loghim (Romania) went 20.47 on her fourth put of the competition and had the gold medal until Losch beat her by one centimeter on Claudia's final put. Hard to get closer than that, but it has been done. Can you name some other very close Olympic competitions in any event?

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      • #4
        Devers/Ottey in '96 comes to mind.

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        • #5
          A propos shot put, Komar won by 1 cm in Munich 1972, and the 3rd and 4th also lost by only 4 cm to the winner. Also in Munich, Wolfermann beat Lusis by 2cm, which was the smallest possible difference in javelin then.

          But, in field events except vertical jumps, are there Olympic gold and silver medalists with the very same result (probably there are), with the 2nd best result deciding the winner?

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          • #6
            P.S. in Montreal, women's pentathlon medalists got 4745, 4745, and 4740 points, all representing GDR.

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            • #7
              Excellent answers! One of my favorites was the 2000 Olympic men's 10,000 where Haile Gebrselassie beat Paul Tergat by .09. They finished in the same order four year before in Atlanta, but there Tergat was beaten by .83!

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              • #8
                [QUOTE=Olli;2605057

                But, in field events except vertical jumps, are there Olympic gold and silver medalists with the very same result (probably there are), with the 2nd best result deciding the winner?[/QUOTE]

                It's moot now, but in '04, Belonog beat Adam Nelson on second best throw. They tied at 21.16/ 69-5 1/4; Belonog's 2nd best was 69-4 3/4 ( twice ) and Nelson's was zip ( 5 fouls ! ) But now years later Belonog is dq.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dukehjsteve View Post
                  It's moot now, but in '04, Belonog beat Adam Nelson on second best throw. They tied at 21.16/ 69-5 1/4; Belonog's 2nd best was 69-4 3/4 ( twice ) and Nelson's was zip ( 5 fouls ! ) But now years later Belonog is dq.
                  At the time I remember watching the TV broadcast of Nelson stepping over the line, what seemed like purposely, and I was wondering, "get a second legal mark already, just in case."

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                  • #10
                    If it had been that close to his best mark (which it would have had to be if it was going to beat Belonog's second best mark), I doubt that he would have stepped over the line.

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                    • #11
                      Nelson's last put in 2004 was a foot foul, but not intentional. He yelled at the officials, saying it was not a foul, but it clearly was a foot foul.

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