Clay suggested that someone put together an all-time World Cup matchup. The school year is winding down, so I'm the Rockefeller of free time.
The first part is to put together the eight teams competing. Traditionally, there have been teams representing the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific, along with the USA and the top two teams in the European Cup. The all-time men's medal leaders at the European Championships are Russia/USSR and the UK, so we'll go with those two.
Hoff was good, but Kozak set WRs, ranked #1 four times, and won an Oly gold. Hoff set WRs and was the world's best vaulter for at least four seasons and probably would have won the OG in 1924 had he not been hurt, but that's speculation. Kozak gets extra style points for flipping off the Soviets.
Kozak set 2 WRs -- in Milan on 5/11/1980 (by 1 cm) and in the 1980 Moscow Olympics (by 3 cm). Hoff set 5 WRs which improved the standard by a total of 16 cm, and as a pro exceeded the amateur record once more.
As I go through my files, I see that Hoff was undefeated in four seasons (1922, '23, '25, and '26). In the first three he was far better on marks alone than the rest of the world, but by 1926 they began to catch up with him. Gurdgingly, I'll admit you probably have a point. But Kozak just looked so cool!
Our final field event on the first day of the All-Time World Cup is the discus throw.
Africa: Frantz Kruger
Americas: Luis Delis
Asia: Li Weinan
Europe: Adolpho Consolini (not a solid choice over Danek, Schult, Reidel et al)
Pacific: Les Mills
UK: Robert Weir (great musician, too!)
USA: Al Oerter
USSR: Romas Ubartas (can you believe he's their only DT man ever ranked #1?)
1) Oerter, of course
Team scoring through 4 events:
>Kozak raised the WR once by 1cm. Hoff raised it
>five times in a four-year period before being
>banned. Total raising was 16cm. He redefined
>the event, which Kozak didn't do.>>
Hoff also set 11 WRs indoors to Kozak's 1. But the main thing to be considered is that Hoff was redefining the event at a a time when there was no (to my knowledge) technological advancement going on in the pole department. I'm willing to bet that the pole that Kozak set his WRs on didn't even exist when he first made the World Rankings.
The final event of the first day, the 10 000 meters:
Africa: Haile Gebreselassie
Americas: Arturo Barrios
Asia: Toshihiko Seko
Europe: Emil Zatopek
Pacific: Ron Clarke
UK: Brendan Foster
USA: Billy Mills
USSR: Vladimir Kuts
And the results:
3) Clarke (outkicked again!)
Before anyone gets on me about Zatopek vs Gebreselassie, let me say that Zatopek simply stomped his competition. In his four major championship wins (2 OG, 2 EC) his average margin of victory was 40 seconds, each time defeating the year's #2 ranked 10k man.
Team scores at the conclusion of the first day:
Mr.Squire: this is reallllly a great thread. One of the best the board has seen yet. But..... (other shoe dropping).... could you please make each event a different thread? There was a very instructive discourse about the pole vault going on and then it's interrupted by a bunch of other events. Just a thought.
Let me help you see it. 1980 Olympic 800 - Coe 2nd, 1982 European Championships 800 - Coe 2nd, 1984 Olympic 800 - Coe 2nd. To be sure, Kipketer has lost a few big ones. However, he not only broke Coe's record but also won three world championships (plus one indoors), a much better success record in major competition than Coe's. It goes without saying that double Olympic gold medalists Snell and Whitfield outrank Coe, who too often came up short when it counted the most.
Bear with me Squire,I cant't resist adding a few lines about Charles Hoff since I grew up in that country.
He was without a doubt one of the greatest athletic talents in the world in those days. Since he could not compete in the vault in Paris in '24 due to injury he ran the 800 and finished 8th in the final.
He was also quite a showman and once vaulted 13'2 wearing tailcoat.
In 1931 he even talked Figure Skating great Sonja Henie into coming out for track. Hoff coached her and she ran some good junior 100m on Bislett during that summer.
Meanwhile I can't wait for tomorrows competition.
Does Brumel realize that guys are flopping now?
>I like the thread myself..would you take Matete
Um, last night I suddenly realized that I'd completely forgotten about Akii-Bua. Which of the two you pick depends on how much empahsis you put on consistency. Akii-Bua ran a stunning WR in 1972 but never got reasonably close to it again. Both athletes ranked #1 in the world twice, while Matete took the runner-up spot four times to Akii-Bua's one. Matete's record in big championship meets isn't stunning (one gold and two silver) but Akii-Bua only won the '72 OG.
It boils down to this: Akii-Bua wouldn't come to mind as Africa's greatest 400 hurdler if not for a single race. Is that race enough? I don't know how to answer that.
from Clay Parker: Coe in 4th place...I can't see it
He's right! I can't see Coe finishing 4th, either. The British selectors would go for a proven competitor, not a fast time-trialer. They'd select Doug Lowe (OG gold '24 & '28), or even Tommy Hampson (OG '32 gold and WR, CG '30 champ).
Coe was a pussycat when it came to major 800m competiitons. Meow!
>from Clay Parker: Coe in 4th place...I can't see
He's right! I can't see Coe finishing 4th,
>either. The British selectors would go for a
>proven competitor, not a fast time-trialer.
>They'd select Doug Lowe (OG gold '24 & '28), or
>even Tommy Hampson (OG '32 gold and WR, CG '30
Yep, I rate both Lowe's and Hampson's careers as better than Coe's. I figured that I'd be crucified for skipping over him, though, considering how much furor was raised by my attitude that Keino's OG gold and silver tops Ryun's OG silver.