i FINALLY got around to watching the clips cited many posts back and two things shocked me about my main man, Tommie Smith, since I hadn't seen footage of him in years:
1. He's not nearly as smooth as I recalled him. Much more of the "gangly" sort than I remembered. Suspect that's because in the interim everybody else has smoothed out a lot and he was just ahead of his time.
2. Even though I know that it's impossible ("impossible"?), I swear that he lifts and accelerates--maybe even accelerates significantly--with 50m to go. The Tommie Jet gear in action. What strikes me is th at it isn't a gradual pull-way; he just suddenly stomps on it, and he's suddenly moving faster than every one else; surely everybody else couldn't have decided to slow at the same time!
(apropos to that last, I do recall Bud Winter once saying that Tommie was still accelerating at the end of his 19.5. He based that--true or not--on the fact that nobody else had run in that lane that day (on dirt) and he went out and measured every one of his strides for the whole race, and they were still getting longer at the end)
ps--I still say Tommie beats MJ, particularly if the lane draw is favorable.