are the olympics really that important?


Forum devoted to track & field items of an historical nature.

are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Wed Oct 01, 2003 6:43 pm

Should olympic wins really be considered that important in comparing the careers of athletes? Is it that important that Skeets, Ryun, whoever else, never won an Oly title? I realize it's a major goal of an athlete's career, but it is only one meet (albeit the biggest meet) out of every four years. Would/should we think of Ryun's career, for example, to be more significant if he had won the olympic 1500?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Wed Oct 01, 2003 7:01 pm

The Olympics have been the biggest meet around for the past 100 years. Had Jim Ryun won the Olympic gold at 1,500, of course this would be of great significance for his career. Ryun was a fantastic miler. In my mind, one of the greatest ever. He had so much talent, however he ran in three Olympic Games at 1,500 meters and "only" came home with a silver medal. That alone is a big part of his story. As for raw talent, I think Ryun would be in the top five of all time. That, of course, has nothing to do with his tactics or his mental concentration.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Wed Oct 01, 2003 7:05 pm

>Should olympic wins really be considered that
>important in comparing the careers of athletes?
>Is it that important that Skeets, Ryun, whoever
>else, never won an Oly title? I realize it's a
>major goal of an athlete's career, but it is
>only one meet (albeit the biggest meet) out of
>every four years. Would/should we think of
>Ryun's career, for example, to be more
>e significant if he had won the olympic 1500?

Absolutely,

Especially in Ryun's time. There were no world championships and track & field is about winning & competition, not necessarily fast times. If we discount the importance of the Olympics, Ron Clarke is great, but he was not a great racer, just a great runner. Winning is the most important thing and winning on the biggest stage against the best competition is significant.

There are only a handful of great athletes who have never won an Olympic gold. Many of them due to circumstance, world war, boycott, injury, etc. But as every athlete points their training toward the Olympics, it is the most important competition to win. It is hard to crown an athlete as one of the event's greats without their possessing an Olympic gold.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Wed Oct 01, 2003 7:11 pm

>The Olympics have been the biggest meet around
>for the past 100 years. Had Jim Ryun won the
>Olympic gold at 1,500, of course this would be of
>great significance for his career. Ryun was a
>fantastic miler. In my mind, one of the greatest
>ever. He had so much talent, however he ran in
>three Olympic Games at 1,500 meters and "only"
>came home with a silver medal. That alone is a
>big part of his story. As for raw talent, I
>think Ryun would be in the top five of all time.
>That, of course, has nothing to do with his
>tactics or his mental concentration.

Is his losing in those three (i thought it was two but now I'm not sure) Olympics a fair assessment of his tactics or mental concentration? He won so many othjer races that it would be hard to say that he lacked those attributes. It's seems more reasonable to look at those meets as aberrations from the norm. Is it?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Wed Oct 01, 2003 7:24 pm

Ryun ran in Tokyo, Mexico City, and Munich. The Olympics are about pressure and back in 1964 - 1972 when there were no world championships, the Olympics was it. Of course Ryun was a great runner. He was way ahead of his time, however I don't think he had the mental "toughness" of Herb Elliott or Peter Snell. Had he, I believe he would have won an Olympic gold medal. He had the ability, but something always got in the way. I still rate Ryun as one of the all time best milers in the world. I just think the Olympic gold medal is worth a lot.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:04 am

A contrary opinion: I've felt for a long time that the Olympics is an important event (duh!), but NOT the be-all and end-all of the sport. It's wonderfully impressive, of course, when a great athlete rises to the occasion and wins the big one on the designated day: Elliott, Snell, Walker, Coe, etc., etc. But there's also alot of luck involved, and the simple vagaries of timing. If the Olympics had been held in 1978 instead of 1976/80, then Henry Rono would have been a double (or triple??) champion; ditto for Bannister in '54; and so on, endlessly. Any objective look at the roster of Olympic gold medalists over the past 20 years or so reveals a curious mixture of appropriately "big" names and an equal bunch of guys who just got "lucky" on the day. It's fine to be lucky, but I just don't think these wins have much more significance than that--luck. Is Peter Rono the best 1500 guy of the late 1980s? Hardly! The Olympics is just another meet--a big meet, granted, but by no means the only one that matters...
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:38 am

>A contrary opinion: I've felt for a long time
>that the Olympics is an important event (duh!),
>but NOT the be-all and end-all of the sport.
>It's wonderfully impressive, of course, when a
>great athlete rises to the occasion and wins the
>big one on the designated day: Elliott, Snell,
>Walker, Coe, etc., etc. But there's also alot
>of luck involved, and the simple vagaries of
>timing. If the Olympics had been held in 1978
>instead of 1976/80, then Henry Rono would have
>been a double (or triple??) champion; ditto for
>Bannister in '54; and so on, endlessly. Any
>objective look at the roster of Olympic gold
>medalists over the past 20 years or so reveals a
>curious mixture of appropriately "big" names
>and an equal bunch of guys who just got
>"lucky" on the day. It's fine to be lucky,
>but I just don't think these wins have much more
>significance than that--luck. Is Peter Rono the
>best 1500 guy of the late 1980s? Hardly! The
>Olympics is just another meet--a big meet,
>granted, but by no means the only one that
>matters...

I absolutely agree. Very well put. The element of luck and timing involved in any given meet has to be considered. So, with that in mind, performance over time should very heavily outweigh olympic performance. Olympic losses or wins shouldn't add that much weight to our consideration of a person's career with regards to comparing it with another athlete's career.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 6:43 am

I
>absolutely agree. Very well put. The element of
>luck and timing involved in any given meet has to
>be considered. So, with that in mind,
>performance over time should very heavily
>outweigh olympic performance. Olympic losses or
>wins shouldn't add that much weight to our
>consideration of a person's career with regards
>to comparing it with another athlete's career.

There are lucky Olympic champions. However wonderful the accomplishments of Bannister or Rono. Some guys peaked in non-Olympic years, other in Olympic years. Had FloJo peaked in 1987, instead of 1988, she would not have the some standing in the sport. However, that being said, athletes who can dominate for a quadrennium (sp?) or more eventually do win a gold medal. Rono had the bad luck of back-to-back boycotts. Had the Olympics started in 1895, Greg Foster would be a triple Olympic champion....maybe. Remember, athletes sit out or curtail their efforts in non-Olympic years. Why did Edwin Moses take off 1985 & '82, not 1980 & '84? Injuries, sure, but he did take some time off the rest and recuperate. (He also did not compete at half-strength). Is Paraskevi Patalidou better than Gail Devers? No. Is Shirley Strickland de la Hunty better than Gail Devers? I'm not sure. Gail's lack of a 100H gold does not help her in judging the best of all time.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 8:19 am

>Gail's lack of a 100H gold does not help her in judging the best of all time.<

But she has three 100H golds. They just happen to have been in the WC, rather than the OG. The fact is that today, the WC are just as important. They have the same athletes, the same format, the same participation, the same level of officials. The feel in the stadium, the level of competition and the excitement, are the same--and I've been to both.

No doubt, before 1983, the evaluation of an athlete's career had to consider success (or lack of success)in the OG and there was nothing else that mattered as much. But today, I think you have to look at both OG and WC, and you should look at them as equals.

To be sure, Devers's record even by that standard is not unblemished. But she did win three big ones and the fact that thty weren't OG big ones shouldn't matter very much in assessing her career.

I guess my answer to the subject question is yes, the really are that important, but so are the World Championships.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 8:59 am

Currently the Worlds are at best half as important as the Olympics, since they occur twice as often. Additionally, what are the chances that Marion (or any other female athlete) would have taken maternity leave in an Olympic year? Female athletes tend to have babies (when they are planned) in a post-Olympic year, so the worlds in the year after an Olympics are of even less signifcance than the year before, in my opinion.

I would love to ask a sample of world class athletes which they would rather have, two world golds or on Olympic gold?

I still find it hard to dub an athlete as an all-time great without their having an Olympic gold, unless there is significant evidence from the balance of their career OR they were victums of events beyond their control (mainly boycott).

Additonally, winning is important, but the presumption is that if an athlete fails to win Olympic Gold, then they LOST. Either in the games or at the trials. The best athletes win the vast majority of their competitions, especially at their peak. Take Harald Schmid, he lost much more than he won. He lost to Moses, he lost to Harris, he beat most of his European competitors, but his career is full of silver & bronze, not gold. As good as Merlene Ottey was, she lost most of her big races. Frankie Fredericks has been a terrific sprinter, but he lost 4 Olympic finals to 4 different men.

>>Gail's lack of a 100H gold does not help her in
>judging the best of all time.<

But she has
>three 100H golds. They just happen to have been
>in the WC, rather than the OG. The fact is that
>today, the WC are just as important. They have
>the same athletes, the same format, the same
>participation, the same level of officials. The
>feel in the stadium, the level of competition and
>the excitement, are the same--and I've been to
>both.

No doubt, before 1983, the evaluation
>of an athlete's career had to consider success
>(or lack of success)in the OG and there was
>nothing else that mattered as much. But today, I
>think you have to look at both OG and WC, and you
>should look at them as equals.

To be sure,
>Devers's record even by that standard is not
>unblemished. But she did win three big ones and
>the fact that thty weren't OG big ones shouldn't
>matter very much in assessing her career.

I
>guess my answer to the subject question is yes,
>the really are that important, but so are the
>World Championships.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby larwood » Thu Oct 02, 2003 9:28 am

The mention of Peter Rono shows how
irrelevant the Olympics are now. His name is
a small blip on the historical radar screens.
The Olympics certainly had a larger sense 40 years
ago---would they have made that horrible movie
`Running Brave' if Billy Mills had lost
to Ron Clarke/
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 9:36 am

One more thing. In discussing the "Olympics" we're actually talking about a very complicated phenomenon. It's far more than "just" a track meet--and that's a big part of the problem for me. A big track meet is just that: a track meet. The Olympics is a gigantic media/nationalistic/pop culture event. Some people love that; I don't. I can't fully separate Olympic competition from the tidal wave of hype, promotional blather, and banal feel-good rhetoric that surrounds the actual sporting events. The Olympics INCLUDES track competition, but in itself is NOT a track meet. One of the reasons that athletes value the Olympics so much is that celebrity there has a chance to transcend the (obviously limited) track world--it can result in a much broader, popular renown (Flo Jo, et al.) It's for this reason--not really because they think the Olympics is somehow more intrinsically meaningful than a WC--that athletes still put such stock in this odd, once-every-four-years media carnival.

Is that being too harsh?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 9:39 am

>I would love to ask a sample of
world class athletes which they would rather
have, two world golds or on Olympic gold?<

Good question. How about you? Which would you choose--what you think is the highest honor that can be bestowed in your profession (assuming that it is not something like the Nobel Prize, which carries a cash award), or would you rather have the second highest honor plus $120,000 cash?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Slowrunner » Thu Oct 02, 2003 10:29 am

>The mention of Peter Rono shows how
irrelevant
>the Olympics are now. His name is
a small blip
>on the historical radar screens.


So any sporting event in which there is an upset is "irrelevant"?

To think that the Olympics are less meaningful in any sense than the World Championships is clearly irresponsible.

By the way, Rono did have a great deal of luck in winning that race. The only "great" runner in the race was an underimpressive and maybe even a bit over-the-hill Cram. Also there was a definitely past-his-prime Steve Scott. With Aouita and Cruz dropping out after the heats and Bile out due to injury. Give credit to Rono, the race fell right into his hands and he capitalized. He won the race everyone else wanted to.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 11:06 am

"To think that the Olympics are less meaningful in any sense than the World Championships is clearly irresponsible."

I don't think that's quite the way to phrase it. You seem to be implying some sort of moral judgment.

It's interesting that your comments that follow simply prove the point: Rono got lucky in a shockingly low-caliber race. Why should we pretend that that race was any better than 50 other 1500s that year?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 12:15 pm

YES, the Olympic Games are VERY important. It is not just a sport event, it is a cultural event, and it is an IDEA. Naïve as it may sound today, the ancient tradition to stop all wars during the Games reveals the essence of the Games. If only we could do the same today. Not force such a requirement but if we could only, all people and governments in the world, voluntarily stop any kind of violence during the Games. Just the mere thinking of such possibility makes the Olympic Games VERY important. I know it’s all money those days but I am still romantic (or foolish?) enough to believe that all those athletes that can’t wait until it is an Olympic Year again to excel, it is because they do believe to the Olympic Idea and they do want to be remembered as Olympic Champions, not as World Champions or World Record holders.

Ms Patoulidou was asked after her win in 1992 if she was going to continue running the hurdles. She simply responded that there is no need for her to do so anymore. How can you top it she said? Whatever I do after now it can’t be compared to that moment.

And yes, I do love and admire Ms Gail Devers. She is the best of the best. She is one of the most accomplished 100m hurdlers in the last 15 years. She was (is) definitely a better, stronger athlete than Ms Patoulidou. But if Gail is still running today (that’s just my humble opinion) it is because she too wants to once be called “The Olympic Champion”. And I assure you that I will be there next year in the Olympic Stadium in Athens cheering and screaming for her because she deserves it. And 80,000 Greek or not spectators will do so as well.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby 6 5.5hjsteve » Thu Oct 02, 2003 12:25 pm

We all have discussed over and over the sad fact that 99 % of the US populace does not even know how to spell Track & Filed, much less be fans.

When is thre ONLY time, every four years, that this is not true ?

Johnny Lunchbucket can win 8 straight WC's over a 14 year period, but if he does not win the OG once, he is not on the US radar screen.

OGs is The Big Ball Game. Not so much to all of us, but to that other 99 % out there. Unfair, but reality.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 12:31 pm

>YES, the Olympic Games are VERY important. It is
>not just a sport event, it is a cultural event,
>and it is an IDEA. Naïve as it may sound today,
>the ancient tradition to stop all wars during the
>Games reveals the essence of the Games. If only
>we could do the same today. Not force such a
>requirement but if we could only, all people and
>governments in the world, voluntarily stop any
>kind of violence during the Games. Just the mere
>thinking of such possibility makes the Olympic
>Games VERY important. I know it’s all money
>those days but I am still romantic (or foolish?)
>enough to believe that all those athletes that
>can’t wait until it is an Olympic Year again to
>excel, it is because they do believe to the
>Olympic Idea and they do want to be remembered as
>Olympic Champions, not as World Champions or
>World Record holders.

Ms Patoulidou was asked
>after her win in 1992 if she was going to
>continue running the hurdles. She simply
>responded that there is no need for her to do so
>anymore. How can you top it she said? Whatever
>I do after now it can’t be compared to that
>moment.

And yes, I do love and admire Ms Gail
>Devers. She is the best of the best. She is one
>of the most accomplished 100m hurdlers in the
>last 15 years. She was (is) definitely a better,
>stronger athlete than Ms Patoulidou. But if Gail
>is still running today (that’s just my humble
>opinion) it is because she too wants to once be
>called “The Olympic Champion”. And I assure
>you that I will be there next year in the
>Olympic Stadium in Athens cheering and screaming
>for her because she deserves it. And 80,000
>Greek or not spectators will do so as well.

I wasn't asking whether the Olympics were important as a multinational, multicultural group hug, or even whether or not they are important to individual athletes as a career goal. Most people, i would guess, think they are.

I was interested in whether or not the olympics are that important as a factor in comparing and ranking the careers of athletes. Olympic success seems to carry a great deal of weight in that endeavor (ranking the the sports historical heirarchy, that is). For example, Renaldo Nehemiah, although he dominated the 110H like few (if any) others have would not be considered as the greatest hurdler ever by many simply because he never won an Oly title. Is that reasonable?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby 6 5.5hjsteve » Thu Oct 02, 2003 12:52 pm

In Nehemiah's particular case, no, it is not reasonable to "penalize" him. Same with Warmerdam. They both would have won in 1980 and 1940 respectively w/o taking off their sweats.

But's it's fair to "penalize" those that had an OPPORTUNITY, such as Clarke, Ryun, and EL G.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Pego » Thu Oct 02, 2003 12:59 pm

My answer to you, Steve is that, yes, OG are THAT important, or even more. They transcend all humanity, they are bigger than anything else. They are not just competition or culture. Jimmy Carter elevated himself above the Olympiad and suffered the greatest blemish of his political career
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 1:22 pm

>My answer to you, Steve is that, yes, OG are THAT
>important, or even more. They transcend all
>humanity, they are bigger than anything else.
>They are not just competition or culture. Jimmy
>Carter elevated himself above the Olympiad and
>suffered the greatest blemish of his political
>career

Pego, c'mon man. Don't beat around the bush. Do you REALLY think they are important :)
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 1:35 pm

>In Nehemiah's particular case, no, it is not
>reasonable to "penalize" him. Same with
>Warmerdam. They both would have won in 1980 and
>1940 respectively w/o taking off their
>sweats.

But's it's fair to "penalize" those
>that had an OPPORTUNITY, such as Clarke, Ryun,
>and EL G.

I agree that both athletes would have been the closest thing to a shoe-in if they had been able to compete. But realistically something else could have happened. A smacked hurdle, failure to navigate wind conditions, a remarkably bad day.....it happened to Morceli in '92, El G (as you mentioned) '96 and '00, Bubka in '88 (I think it was '88). Had this happened to an athlete of Nehemia's calibre, how much would that hurt his place in the pantheon of hurdlers?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Slowrunner » Thu Oct 02, 2003 3:02 pm

and has been mentioned on other threads, Skeets shot himself in the foot big time by trying to play in the N.F.L. He was not at fault for missing '80, but is for missing '84 when he probably would have been a favorite, as he would have been 24 years old and entering his athletic prime.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 4:33 pm

"They transcend all humanity, they are bigger than anything else."

You're being ironic, I hope. If not...yeeeecccchhhh!
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 4:58 pm

Very sad that most of you guys see the Olympics as a "group hug". Very disappointing. Let's turn this forum to NFL forum.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:35 pm

>Very sad that most of you guys see the Olympics
>as a "group hug". Very disappointing. Let's
>turn this forum to NFL forum.


I am the only one who used this allusion as a way of encompassing all of the good will that surrounds and is embodied by the Olympic movement and spirit. I'm truly sorry if it offended you, that wasn't my intention.

The question initiating this thread was not meant to scrutinize the greater importance of the Olympic games as a whole. Rather, it was supposed to initiate discussion on the importance of an individual's performance in the olympics in context of his/her entire career performances.

By the way, what's with the NFL crack? It's my understanding that the NFL is involved in a lot of charities. Also, I don't think there are bribes involved in securing the Suberbowl site.

Try reading the entire thread before placing your two cents and looking down on the other posters.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Pego » Thu Oct 02, 2003 5:44 pm

Kuha1, you can play the cynic all you wish. I ain't kidding, the Games are the biggest positive thing on this planet. Call me naive, romantic or even an idiot, if you wish. I've been transfixed by the Olympics ever since I listened to the first Games on a radio in 1948 as a 9-year old tyke.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 6:03 pm

>Call me naive, romantic or even an idiot, if you wish.<

Or? Why not "and"? Why should we have to choose?
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 02, 2003 9:23 pm

The question initiating this thread was not
>meant to scrutinize the greater importance of the
>Olympic games as a whole. Rather, it was supposed
>to initiate discussion on the importance of an
>individual's performance in the olympics in
>context of his/her entire career performances.
>
Try reading the entire thread before
>placing your two cents and looking down on the
>other posters.

My dear friend,

I thought that I was indeed answering your question, thus the Gail Devers example.
My apologies for not answering that question directly then, but yes an individual's performance in the Olympics is very important of his/her entire career. Maybe a question could answer your question. Do you know of any high profile track and field athlete who did not attempt or refused to compete at the Olympic Games? Just name one. I have heard so many interviews and it is always the same thing. Some day making to the Olympics. If it is so important for the athletes, how can it be dismissed as not an important accomplishment? Of course if you take the whole concept of the Olympic Games away from the games, then it is indeed just a meeting every 4 years. In that case, continuous and high profile performances during the 4 years in between are more important than performing well during the OG.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Slowrunner » Thu Oct 02, 2003 10:18 pm

>
The question initiating this thread was
>not
>meant to scrutinize the greater importance
>of the
>Olympic games as a whole. Rather, it was
>supposed
>to initiate discussion on the
>importance of an
>individual's performance in
>the olympics in
>context of his/her entire
>career performances.
>
Try reading the entire
>thread before
>placing your two cents and
>looking down on the
>other posters.

My dear
>friend,

I thought that I was indeed answering
>your question, thus the Gail Devers example.
>
My apologies for not answering that question
>directly then, but yes an individual's
>performance in the Olympics is very important of
>his/her entire career. Maybe a question could
>answer your question. Do you know of any high
>profile track and field athlete who did not
>attempt or refused to compete at the Olympic
>Games? Just name one. I have heard so many
>interviews and it is always the same thing.
>Some day making to the Olympics. If it is so
>o important for the athletes, how can it be
>dismissed as not an important accomplishment? Of
>course if you take the whole concept of the
>Olympic Games away from the games, then it is
>indeed just a meeting every 4 years. In that
>case, continuous and high profile performances
>during the 4 years in between are more important
>than performing well during the OG.

It is easier to overlook an athlete who never won at worlds rather than one who never won the Olympics. Seb Coe for example (however, had worlds been held in '79 or '81...)
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby pickle47 » Thu Oct 02, 2003 11:04 pm

Bummer. I just typed a really long, eloquent treatise on this subject and, upon trying to post it, found I wasn't logged in. I ain't doin' that again.

Summary: Times have changed for the Games, for track and for the athletes. I think a race has to stand on its own, even if it has the name Olympics attached to it. Not all Olympic races are created equal. The stage is a factor, but the actors are the essence. Look at the marathon. I don't think of the Olympic marathon winner as the best marathoner any more. Every race has to be evaluated for what it is, taking all factors into consideration.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Fri Oct 03, 2003 4:33 am

"Call me naive, romantic or even an idiot, if you wish."

My dear Pego: If you insist, then indeed I shall. Thank you for your understanding.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby larwood » Fri Oct 03, 2003 5:37 am

`The biggest thing on this planet'
and all sold to the highest bidder.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:07 am

When it comes right down to it, if the top athletes are competing in the biggest meet of the year, what difference does it make whether it's the Olympics or the World Championships? As far as I'm concerned, the only difference is that at the Olympics, they're fencing, wrestling, and playing water polo somewhere nearby. And, oh yes, there's a torch. Big friggin' deal. The Olympics are important, but as a track meet, it's no better than the World Championships and the more people believe that, the healthier the sport will be.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Guest » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:23 am

Precisely.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby KevinM » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:34 am

Off topic, but reply to earlier post.

True, Ryun had three chances at the Oly games and came up only with a Silver, but let's look at the facts:

1964 -- Just a kid, just beginning SR. year in HS, pr is only 3:59.

1968 -- On the top of his game in '67, but runs into dual wrecking ball of mono and altitude. Silver to a phenomenal performance.

1972 -- falls. Can't really blame tactics for that, can you?

Any question that the guy didn't have it mentally or that his tactics were faulty is off base, IMO.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Pego » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:49 am

<The Olympics are important, but as a track meet, it's no better than the World Championships and the more people believe that, the healthier the sport will be.>

Who is naive here? Without the OG, T&F would not get even the sorry recognition by the media it is getting now. I've been a subject of ridicule for my "romantic" attachment to the OG in the past, so I am used to it. What surprises me is to receive it at this forum of T&F fans. After all, T&F is THE pillar of the Games. What surprises me even more is, that so far there has been not a single voice coming to my assistence. I just can't believe I am the only geek in this noble society who feels this way.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Slowrunner » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:53 am

>Off topic, but reply to earlier post.

True,
>Ryun had three chances at the Oly games and came
>up only with a Silver, but let's look at the
>facts:

1964 -- Just a kid, just beginning SR.
>year in HS, pr is only 3:59.

1968 -- On the
>top of his game in '67, but runs into dual
>wrecking ball of mono and altitude. Silver to a
>phenomenal performance.

1972 -- falls. Can't
>really blame tactics for that, can you?

Any
>question that the guy didn't have it mentally or
>that his tactics were faulty is off base, IMO.

Unfortunately, there is no evidence that Ryun could win the big meet. Could he have won a tactical kicker's race? I did not see much of him, so I can't say for sure. Ryun was largely a victim of bad luck which hurt his chances at success in the Olympics.
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby 6 5.5hjsteve » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:55 am

go back and read mine, Pego, you are correct. As I said in mine, without the Olympics, Track & Field to the typical American, or even typical American general sports fan would have the visibility of Table Tennis. So we TafNuts should treat the Olympics as our most treasured asset !
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Re: are the olympics really that important?

Postby Pego » Fri Oct 03, 2003 6:57 am

Thank you. I was beginning to think that nobody loves me anymore :-D
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