I think the small differential between Seberle's PR sum and actual deca-PR show what a good decathlete he was. He got the PR's when they counted.
When Sebrle set the WR 9026, he exceeded the sum of his previous decathlon event PR's (8995). He set 4 decathlon PRs, tied another, and was within 10 points in 3 other events. His worst event compared to decathlon PR was PV, 10cm below. Amazing. He bettered his previous decathlon total by 269 points. (He may have had open event PR's at the time superior to his decathlon PR's; if anyone knows, please comment or pm me). But that was a magical two days. Though as noted above his event PRs eventually summed to 9328, and though he hit 8800 or over an incredible 5 times in 2002-04, his best score after the WR was "only" 8893.
I really hope the three aces get through trials and to London injury free. The competition would be an all-time classic. Here is my (somewhat ignorant) assessment of the situation as off today (based on comp results, interviews, etc.):
Eaton: Continues to improve. It's really impressive that he is able to improve in his (no more) weaker events, while maintaining and even improving (the 400m) in his strong events. I saw in an interview that he was unhappy with a 46m discus throw at Mt. Sac, apparently he has thrown around 50m in practice. He seems to have a natural resistance towards injuries too. It is hard to find arguments against him being the winner in London. If he is to threathen Sebrle's world record he needs good weather, high jump around 2.07-2.10, and a javelin throw over 60m. Assuming his other events are at their usual high level. I think he will do it, but more likely at something like Götzis next year than in London.
Hardee: Seems to have an impressive control in the way he is building up towards the championships. He seems to be more vulnerable towards injuries than Eaton (tall and really explosive = injury vulnerability), and his elbow recovery is a question mark, but from what we can see and hear (interviews, videos) it is going as well as it can. I predict he will save the elbow a bit at the trials (throw 50m-ish, if his other events have gone as planned), and then go after it in London. The make or break events could be long jump/high jump. I hope he gets into that energetic and loose approach rythm we have seen when he has long jumped at his best. Shot put is an event where (from a fan's perspective) it seems like he has a lot more left in the tank. 16m from a stand in competition, should lead to 17m throws if he gets his balance and timing right. If his elbow can handle all out javelin throwing, he will battle side by side with Eaton.
Clay: Clay is impressing as well. His speed is as good as ever (speed endurance?), his disc and javelin as well. Again the long jump and high jump will be the deal-breakers, I think. He must have gained confidence considering how well most of his events are coming along (I thought the Drake Relays results where really good). And when a champion has ignited the engine (and his mental spirit), he will probably just keep gaining momentum. Improving in practice and competition is the best "mental preparation" you can have, so I'm sure he will make the team and not give away anything for free in London.
First, I'm a big fan of Eaton. He's local, he's a really nice human being and his upside seems almost limitless. But the guy who has won the last two World Championships can't be anything but the favorite in London, presuming his elbow is reasonably well healed. There's a big difference between PRs and potential versus performing on the big stage and Hardee showed us that last year in Daegu. The big question mark (apart from Hardee's recovery) is how much did Eaton learn last year in his first major decathlon? (I won't count Berlin 2009, since Eaton wasn't remotely considered a medal favorite). What I saw in Daegu was a lot of frustration on Eaton's part, beginning with a subpar performance in the 100. He had numerous opportunities to get back into the battle for the gold, but the frustration mounted and he never seemed relaxed. At this point we really don't know how he'll respond in his next major championship in London. Given his generally relaxed disposition and excellent coaching, along with the Daegu experience, I think he'll be OK and better ready to challenge for the Gold.
Daegu is worth considering with respect to a healthy Eaton versus a healthy Hardee. Hardee won in the big show. Istanbul is also interesting since it shows that Eaton was able to perform on a very large stage and may be getting better at it with more experience.
Given Eaton's continuing improvement in the throws and continued very high performance everywhere else, I would bet my $.02 on him winning in London and wouldn't bet against a WR either in Eugene or in London. That said, I won't be shocked to see him come home with silver against Hardee where they both score around 8700.
Caught up with Ashton Eaton at Tracktown Tuesdays this evening where he was one of the featured speakers. He addressed his Daegu experience quite candidly, admitting that he got caught up in the scores it would take to win a world title, rather than the actual competition. As his performances unfolded at numbers less than what he deemed would be gold medal worthy, he admitted to getting more and more frustrated (something we could all see in the stands or on TV) and vowed that we would never again see that version of Ashton Eaton, just as we'd never seen it before. He seemed very relaxed, but also excited about his JT PR at Stanford.
Saw Ashton this evening also. What a great guy and it was exciting just to watch him talk. He's got a lot of passion. I started thinking about how underestimated his 1500m is. This might be his greatest tool. If Trey or Clay is going to beat Ashton, they'll have to have approx. 200 pts on him going into the 1500. This should be epic.
DecFan wrote: But that was a magical two days. Though as noted above his event PRs eventually summed to 9328, and though he hit 8800 or over an incredible 5 times in 2002-04, his best score after the WR was "only" 8893.
This is the interesting point about some multi eventers; they'll often have one big score when everything goes right over the two days of competition, then their next best score is quite a bit lower. It seems to be more prevalent on the women's side: Ghada Shouaa's best was 6942, but her next best was 6780, a full 162 pts off, from the same season (96); Laris Nikitina's best was 7007 ('89)but her next best was 132 pts behind with 6875 (also from '89) Irina Belova's best was 6845 and next best was 172 pts less with 6673 - both from '92.
Sabine Braun had the biggest differential between best and 2nd best; her pb was 6985 but her next best was a full 188 pts less at 6797 (however, she would have been mid 6800's in Barcelona if it wasn't for that disastrous LJ of just 6.02 when she was clearly in 6.6 form)
The elite men on the whole seem to be closer to their best scores - despite having 10 events and not 7 in which to lose pts - yet Sebrle does stand out with his second best being 133 less.
gh wrote:rumor du jour: Beach will try to get an 800 Q and run that at the NCAA, not do the dec until the OT.
That would be a foolish move on his part. Trading in a golden NCAA title opportunity for a 5th place at the Trials doesn't make much sense. Right now I would rate Clay, Eaton, Hardee, and Morrison ahead of Beach, whose PR is only 8084. Given his improvement during the indoor season, it's not inconceivable that he could score 8300 and with a couple of injuries or no marks by a couple of the guys ahead of him, perhaps he could sneak in, but it would be a longshot. Why not garner that initial NCAA Outdoor Title instead?
He's a decathlete and wants to maximize what he thinks is his best chance as a decathlete to sneak into the Olympics.
All it takes is him having a great meet and one guy to falter a little. I don't see Morrison that far ahead of Beach. I see Beach as a strong canidate for fourth. One NH from the top three and bam! Beach is in!
Fortius19 wrote:Because it's the Olympic Trials man!
He's a decathlete and wants to maximize what he thinks is his best chance as a decathlete to sneak into the Olympics.
Given his age (21), I think 2016/2020 would be a lot more realistic. Perhaps the NCAA crown doesn't mean much to him and he will have another shot at it next year if he stays in school, so maybe that's part of the thought process.
I was looking at the decathletes with the best PBs (from decathlon 2000) and examine the relation between success in one event to others. There are 28 decathletes and I divided them to two groups (top and bottom 10) in one event and then examine their average PBs in another event. I also examine the overall correlation of the 28 events. There are some results that I expected and some that I (as an armchair fan) found a bit surprising.
The highest correlation is between SP and DT. If we rank the 28 decathletes according to their SP the bottom 10 have an average mark of 47.7 compared with 52.2 for the top 10 (correlation of 0.7). BTW - Eaton has the lowest mark in SP from all top 28 decathletes.
There is virtually no relation between JT and the other two throws. The top 10 in SP have on average an advantage of less than a meter (roughly 12 points) compared with the bottom 10 in SP.
There is a strong an expected relation between the 100, 110h, 400 and LJ. For example the top 10 in the 100 have an average PB in LJ of 8.02 compared with 7.82 for the bottom 10 (a difference of 50 points).
There is no relation between HJ and LJ (!) both the top and bottom 10 have an average mark of 2.12. There is a negative relation between the 100 and HJ. The top 10 in the 100 have an average of 2.12 whereas the bottom 10 have an average of 2.16. There is also a negative relation between the PV and the HJ. In contrast there is a positive relation between SP and HJ (2.12 and 2.14). Not really sure what to make of these results.
The PV itself acts much more according to (my) expectations with positive relation with the 100 and the LJ.
There is hardly any relation between the 1,500 and other events. Regardless how you rank the decathletes the gap is roughly between 1-3 seconds and not always in the expected direction. For example, the top 10 in 400 are two seconds slower than the bottom 10.
That's some interesting stuff, Olorin. I'd be curious to see if the pattern was the same going back a bit further in time, say from 1960 to the present, especially regarding the relationships between the HJ/LJ, HJ/100, PV/HJ and SP/HJ. Those correlations just don't make much sense to either of us and I'm thinking a larger database might iron things out. I'm assuming you only calculated deca PRs and not overall PRs.
First of all, I love the decathlon and am not suggesting changing it; however, I do feel like the event favors the speed types. 100 is all speed, LJ/hurdles/400 all require a lot of speed and even HJ/PV/JT/1500 require a good amount of speed. I think a Dave Johnson or Mike Smith were phenomenal athletes that were hurt a little by their lack of 10.5+ speed.
bruce3404 wrote:That's some interesting stuff, Olorin. I'd be curious to see if the pattern was the same going back a bit further in time, say from 1960 to the present, especially regarding the relationships between the HJ/LJ, HJ/100, PV/HJ and SP/HJ. Those correlations just don't make much sense to either of us and I'm thinking a larger database might iron things out. I'm assuming you only calculated deca PRs and not overall PRs.
I started this exercise because I wanted to know if Eaton's JT is weak (before his last PB) considering his SP and DT. Then, I couldn't find any relation between the PB in JT and the PBs in DT & SP. So I decided to look at his HJ (another of his weaker events) and then couldn't find relation between PBs in HJ and PBs in jumping or sprint events.
BTW - according to the statistical analysis Eaton's PB in SP is low considering his PB in DT. Other decathletes that throw ~47 has on average a PB of roughly a meter longer than Eaton (~ 60 points).
Cato/Szmanda almost won the Big 10 PV, both just missing 5.36, with 5.26 being a PR for Cato. Cato is not doing the Deca until NCAAs (because he is worth more in the PV, 110H, LJ, 4X100 than in the Deca at conference); I suspect his throws are not yet good enough, but when they match his strength he might be at 8300. [He is a Soph who has only done one Deca and would have been 2nd at WIC; eventual college Deca PRs could be 10.6-/7.80/14+/2.13/48.6// 13.5/40+/5.40/50+/4:50]
Dave wrote:Do most non college Deca guys disappear until the trials at this point or are we likely to see more of Eaton, Clay, and Hardee before then?
Extremely doubtful any of them would compete in a decathlon this close to the Trials, but they've all been out there working on individual events and will probably continue to do so, though the opportunities are more limited, a problem recently addressed in a T&F News editorial.