Sunday, June 24, 2012

2012 Olympic Trials - Day 3

I assumed that today's truncated event schedule would be anti-climactic, so I added some other activities. Literary license, you understand.

And I was exhausted last night after a 9 mile run and 8 hrs on the track (all in rain), so I expected to take a day off today. But I felt fine upon waking up, so I went out for an easy trot.

And now, back to the track....

First order of business was to find Mike Holloway, Olympic Team Coach and Head of the University of Florida track team. Go Seminoles! No, wait, it's the Gators...

For some reason, he kept calling me Josh. And it turns out he knows someone from my hometown. Small world!

I handed the camera to a woman under an umbrella (the sun actually made an appearance). Then I did a double take; the woman was Valerie Briscoe, tremendous runner who was Michael Johnson before Michael Johnson, winning the 200m/400m double in the 1984 LA Olympics.

Next up; someone told me to find Kellie Wells, 2nd place in the 100m hurdles. She needs to see a doctor before she sprains her face from smiling so much.

Right after Kellie, some guy in the food court asks me where the smoking area is. I tell him it's in Boise. He wasn't amused.

I was.

Curtis Beach! Duke sophomore, and a guy who delivered what may be the classiest act I've ever seen in the middle (ok, the end) of a race. He was well out in front of the decathlon's last event, the 1500m, but was not going to qualify. So he jogged the last straight and stepped aside to let Ashton break the tape for a world record. 

The aforementioned Mr. Beach
Nice job, CB. You'll get your chance.

Women's 400m final. Sanya Richards-Ross has been running very smoothly, so she'll probably win easily. A track luminary from years' past, one with whom I am peripherally acquainted, sidles up to me and asks my prediction.

"49.2 seconds," I say. Fastest in the world this year.

The luminary shakes his head. "49.8 at best," he says.

Sanya takes off, hits the jets with 100 to go, and crosses well out in front. The luminary looks at the scoreboard.

49.28 seconds.

He turns to me, open-mouthed. I shrug my shoulders, palms up, as if to say, "Told you so." 

Luminary Fred Newhouse, my childhood hero, and 1976 Olympic Gold Medalist in this very same event, points at me and yells, "YOU CALLED IT!!" Then he slaps me a high-five.

There are times when you wish parts of your life were captured on camera. Those 10 seconds were one of those times.

Yesterday's women's 100m produced a dead heat for third place. Photo-finish cameras could not place one runner ahead of the other. Indecision. What to do?

Today we get a long-winded resolution. If both runners agree, we'll flip a coin. All other options lead to a run-off. Then it's a dozen ridiculous and hypothetical questions from reporters who didn't listen to the explanation. Lots of repetitive answers.

So I yell my solution: Rock, Paper, Scissors! For an Olympic Berth. How cool would that be?

Not sure if this gentleman agreed, but I had to include the picture.

The 2012 Trials are leading the league in world-class dreadlocks.

Olympic Trials - Day 2

1 comment:

  1. Nothing about Max?

    Thought you were a Local, bra!