The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements


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The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby rhymans » Fri Nov 23, 2012 12:22 am

Now that the 2012 season is well and truly over, it might be time to look at a couple of areas where the US Olympic Trials could be improved.

The women’s 100 meters saw an interesting situation turn into a major furore, but history could have acted as an aid in solving the problem. In 1952 and 1960 there had been ties for third place in the men’s 100. In 1952 Jim Gathers and Dean Smith tied for third, and the situation was simplified in part when Gathers also placed third in the 200. The 2 men had met in the AAU which Smith won, with Gathers 5th, which made it easy for the selectors to choose Smith for the 100, with Gathers running the 200. 1960 was slightly different as the situation wasn’t settled until 6 weeks after the Trials and 3 weeks prior to the Olympics. Paul Winder and Dave Sime had tied for third, and over the next few weeks Sime beat Winder 3-0, and was duly selected, placing as the best American in the Olympics with the silver medal.

The 2012 team was settled by the end of the Trials. This was partly to satisfy the needs of Television. However, the needs of TV and what’s best for the US team are not always the same. In the case of the Women’s 100 meters the sensible solution would have been for the selectors to wait and determine which athlete was in better form as the Games approached, making their choice after the last Diamond League meet prior to the Games.

The decision to select the team in full by the end of the Trials meant that certain athletes missed out on the Games, and were replaced by athletes with a qualifying mark achieved in favourable circumstances. A good example was the Javelin where Humphreys (81.86) and Crouser (80.80) both set personal bests in the Trials, but missed reaching the A standard of 82 metres. Two others who had reached the A standard, but failed to make 78 meters in the Trials, were selected, and placed 32nd and 37th in London. With the USATF having more discretionary control the two top athletes could have had 2 or 3 chances to reach the 82m standard in the lead up to the Games. Failure to do so would have left the way open for the athletes who were eventually selected, but this system would have given the best competitors in the Trials a greater chance to compete in the Games.

Hopefully, these discretionary improvements can be adopted for the 2016 Trials.
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Re: THE OLYMPIC TRIALS AND POSSIBLE IMPROVEMENTS

Postby Marlow » Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:51 am

rhymans wrote:the two top athletes could have had 2 or 3 chances to reach the 82m standard in the lead up to the Games. Failure to do so would have left the way open for the athletes who were eventually selected, but this system would have given the best competitors in the Trials a greater chance to compete in the Games.

I agree. If you allow mark-chasing, and someone does get an A, then at least the more competitive (at the Trials at least) person gets to go (not that they will be competitive at the OG, but who knows). I like the extra drama of chasing. If Suzy Powell had had a chance to chase a DT mark, she would have made the team this year, I bet.
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Re: THE OLYMPIC TRIALS AND POSSIBLE IMPROVEMENTS

Postby decafan » Fri Nov 23, 2012 7:27 am

Ditto Marlow. One of my major beef's with modern track and field is our obsession with marks instead of place finishes. One's ability to compete is absolutely essential. The athletes who compete well at the Trials should be given the opportunity to get their A standard.

On a side note, I also believe that only first place finishes should result in records. No more getting dragged to national records- or world records if you are a woman competing with men.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby gh » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:52 am

rhymans wrote:....
The 2012 team was settled by the end of the Trials. This was partly to satisfy the needs of Television.....


No, this was done (as it was in '08) entirely because it was mandated by the USOC, which remains in overall control of the picking of the teams in all sports.

It's their position, as I understand it, that they need that much time to process the world's largest (yes?) overall team.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:39 am

Getting rid of the Post-Trials-A-chasing-standard-wild-goose-chase was the best thing to happen to the Trials.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby aaronk » Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:48 am

Conor Dary wrote:Getting rid of the Post-Trials-A-chasing-standard-wild-goose-chase was the best thing to happen to the Trials.


Conor, you and I need to go to "couples counseling"!! :lol:
Seems we almost always come out with opposite opinions of each other!!

Anyway, I'm all FOR mark-chasing!!
(As I'm all for MARKS!!!)

One athlete in particular I think of is Natosha Rogers.
She made swift and massive improvements in her 4 10K races, up to and including the Trials!!
Who's to say that if she'd run in Paris or London (the DL meet, not the Games!!), that she wouldn't have slashed her time down even more??

And so many others too!!
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:13 am

Sorry, but anyone in that women's 10k trials who didn't get the A standard gets zero sympathy from me. Conditions were ideal and they knew what they had to do and yet they let it flutter away. The non-As ran a dreadful race.

Meanwhile the men's 10k is a prime example of where having the present rules set up a great race.

Standards chasing after the Trials is for the birds.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby rhymans » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:20 am

GH's point re the USOC is taken and noted, and apologies to USATF (if any are required in this regard), but one wonders at how competent the USOC is at its job. It was able in 2004 to deal with tighter deadlines, and should be able to understand and effect changes that might be beneficial to the US team in 2016 - ie - allowing for the possibilty of athletes placing in the top-3 in the trials beig able to achieve qualifying marks before official entry deadlines close. Presumably the USOC has the best interests of the athletes as one of their targets.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 10:30 am

It should be noted---obviously, Mr. RH already knows this---they allowed the A chasing standard in the not so distant past. Besides setting up a confusing Trials it never really worked. Either the athletes never got the standard or, in the rare case, when they achieved it did squat in the Olympics.

I really soured on this race chasing back in New Orleans 1992 in the Men's 10k. Looking forward to an exciting race, it just occurred to us in the stands that only 3 guys had the standard. Todd Williams was the only guy who wanted to run fast. The others including Ken Martin puttered along. Martin, a non A, got in the top 3. But in the end never got the A. All in all it made for a rather disappointing race.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Marlow » Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:16 pm

gh wrote:It's their position, as I understand it, that they need that much time to process the world's largest (yes?) overall team.

Which, frankly, is pathetic. We're talking about hundreds, not tens of thousands of people. If the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA OLYMPIC COMMITTEE can't cut the red tape and get the team processed in a timely fashion, then they just aren't trying. Everyone and their sister's bureaucratic cousin should be on-board with streamlining the process.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 3:54 pm

Conor Dary wrote:Sorry, but anyone in that women's 10k trials who didn't get the A standard gets zero sympathy from me. Conditions were ideal and they knew what they had to do and yet they let it flutter away. The non-As ran a dreadful race.

Meanwhile the men's 10k is a prime example of where having the present rules set up a great race.

Standards chasing after the Trials is for the birds.


The difference in the cases was the one of the A was a teammate of the best candidate non-A and was willing to assist. In the women's race, the best runners did NOT want anyone to get the standard. Look at the women's 5000.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 18.99s » Fri Nov 23, 2012 3:56 pm

This year there was only something like 1 week between the end of the trials and the deadline for submitting entries, so standards-chasing after the trials didn't make sense.

However, for resolving other issues such as the Felix-Tarmoh dead heat, they had weeks to work out something instead of forcing a resolution so soon, given that both were going to London anyway with one as the alternate.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:47 pm

26mi235 wrote:
Conor Dary wrote:Sorry, but anyone in that women's 10k trials who didn't get the A standard gets zero sympathy from me. Conditions were ideal and they knew what they had to do and yet they let it flutter away. The non-As ran a dreadful race.

Meanwhile the men's 10k is a prime example of where having the present rules set up a great race.

Standards chasing after the Trials is for the birds.


The difference in the cases was the one of the A was a teammate of the best candidate non-A and was willing to assist. In the women's race, the best runners did NOT want anyone to get the standard.


All true. But, it showed what could have been done. The female non-A's still blew it. They might have as well stayed home. And still not a reason to change the present rules.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby gh » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:14 pm

Marlow wrote:
gh wrote:It's their position, as I understand it, that they need that much time to process the world's largest (yes?) overall team.

Which, frankly, is pathetic. We're talking about hundreds, not tens of thousands of people. If the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA OLYMPIC COMMITTEE can't cut the red tape and get the team processed in a timely fashion, then they just aren't trying. Everyone and their sister's bureaucratic cousin should be on-board with streamlining the process.


This "analysis" is so pathetic that I shan't even waste the time responding to it.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Marlow » Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:05 pm

Major corporations expedite passports, travel arrangements, shipments, room and board, etc.. all the time, but the USOC can't?

The vast majority of the OG contingent (all sports) is known well in advance. Few sports can even have a 'chasing' protocol. Even the T&F team is mostly set at the end of the Trials. There's not many that are even in a 'chasing' position. So you're saying the USOC can't handle a later deadline for those few who are chasing (and being chased)?!
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby rhymans » Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:50 am

Hold the Trials a couple of weeks earler relative to the Games and athletes then have the possibility of reaching the A standards prior to the USOC cut-off. For 2016 hold the Trials at the end of June and there's an extra few weeks available
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby DrJay » Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:14 am

Conor Dary wrote:It should be noted---obviously, Mr. RH already knows this---they allowed the A chasing standard in the not so distant past. Besides setting up a confusing Trials it never really worked. Either the athletes never got the standard or, in the rare case, when they achieved it did squat in the Olympics.


Succinctly and well put. I like the way they did it this year. In general, if you ain't got the A standard by the OT, you ain't gonna do much in the OG. It's kind of like turning your homework in on time.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby bushop » Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:23 am

18.99s wrote:This year there was only something like 1 week between the end of the trials and the deadline for submitting entries, so standards-chasing after the trials didn't make sense.

It would in field events.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Mighty Favog » Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:32 am

Question: how many athletes who finished in a top-three position at this year's Olympic Trials yet did not have the A standard at that time ended up achieving that A standard later in the season? And of that very small subset, how many would have had any real chance if finishing in the top 8 or do at the Olympics?

In my mind, the difficulty in achieving said standards by the not-quite-stars is structural, not procedural. There's precious little domestic competition in May or June for post-collegians who aren't good enough to get into overseas meets or who can't afford to travel to the Caribbean meets. The Canadians are addressing this issue with their NTL, we need to too.

The thing I would most want to change about the Olympic Trials is a difficult nut to crack. How do you make it less stressful for the stars, especially those who double, yet maintain the essential idea of fairness?
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Nov 24, 2012 8:16 am

Mighty Favog wrote:

The thing I would most want to change about the Olympic Trials is a difficult nut to crack. How do you make it less stressful for the stars, especially those who double, yet maintain the essential idea of fairness?


We actually discussed this quite a bit in the lovely 'Shorten the Trials' thread. My idea was a sort of copy of the FA Cup in England. Over there all 72 pro teams play in it but the lower divisions play 3 rounds before the big boys show up.

In the Trials version the top 8 in each event would get a bye to the OT Finals, which in the 3000st and above would be a straight final. For the 1500 and below a semi final and a final. The other 8 qualifiers coming from a semi Trials the weekend before. The Finals weekend I think would be fine in 5 days, since there are only 2 rounds at most for each event.

The stars get a bit of a break, but still have to prove themselves. And it would be 5 solid days of track. And also the Non-A's get a chance in the semis to get the A standard while only having to finish in the top 8.

How to pick the top 8 is another matter, but at least it is not selecting the team by committee.
Last edited by Conor Dary on Sat Nov 24, 2012 8:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Nov 24, 2012 8:25 am

bushop wrote:
18.99s wrote:This year there was only something like 1 week between the end of the trials and the deadline for submitting entries, so standards-chasing after the trials didn't make sense.

It would in field events.


Yes, I think allowing the field events a bit of leeway might make sense. Though the fairness of it all, with 2 different qualifying periods, might not be quite such a hot idea.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:56 am

Conor Dary wrote:
In the Trials version the top 8 in each event would get a bye to the OT Finals,

How to pick the top 8 is another matter, but at least it is not selecting the team by committee.


So, if you are not picked you cannot run in anything below the 1500 and in that event only four others get in? Clarify, a bit, but my understanding here leads me to the conclusion 'count me out'.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Mighty Favog » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:57 am

Conor Dary wrote:
Mighty Favog wrote:

The thing I would most want to change about the Olympic Trials is a difficult nut to crack. How do you make it less stressful for the stars, especially those who double, yet maintain the essential idea of fairness?


We actually discussed this quite a bit in the lovely 'Shorten the Trials' thread. My idea was a sort of copy of the FA Cup in England. Over there all 72 pro teams play in it but the lower divisions play 3 rounds before the big boys show up.
This is more or less what the Canadians have gone to doing. The stars qualify straight to semis for sprints/hurdles/800, straight to finals for distance/field, and make up about half of those fields. The muggles go through q-rounds to fill out the semis or finals.

The predicted objection from the knuckleheads in Indy is that athletes need to learn how to run rounds and this will rob them of that. My response is that this isn't as important as in the 70s or 80s; if you go to the OG without ever having run in a Worlds, you're screwed anyway.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:05 am

26mi235 wrote:
Conor Dary wrote:
In the Trials version the top 8 in each event would get a bye to the OT Finals,

How to pick the top 8 is another matter, but at least it is not selecting the team by committee.


So, if you are not picked you cannot run in anything below the 1500 and in that event only four others get in? Clarify, a bit, but my understanding here leads me to the conclusion 'count me out'.


No. There were would be 8 auto qualifiers---picked by fastest times, honors won, etc..---and then the 8 from the previous weekend semi final. 16 altogether in all races 1500 and below. 2 rounds. The distance races a straight final.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:12 am

Mighty Favog wrote:
Conor Dary wrote:
Mighty Favog wrote:

The thing I would most want to change about the Olympic Trials is a difficult nut to crack. How do you make it less stressful for the stars, especially those who double, yet maintain the essential idea of fairness?


We actually discussed this quite a bit in the lovely 'Shorten the Trials' thread. My idea was a sort of copy of the FA Cup in England. Over there all 72 pro teams play in it but the lower divisions play 3 rounds before the big boys show up.
This is more or less what the Canadians have gone to doing. The stars qualify straight to semis for sprints/hurdles/800, straight to finals for distance/field, and make up about half of those fields. The muggles go through q-rounds to fill out the semis or finals.

The predicted objection from the knuckleheads in Indy is that athletes need to learn how to run rounds and this will rob them of that. My response is that this isn't as important as in the 70s or 80s; if you go to the OG without ever having run in a Worlds, you're screwed anyway.


Interesting, so the Canadians are doing something like this already.

Never understood the 'knucklehead' objection. There is little evidence supporting it. No other country does it and they seem to do alright. It sort of made sense 40 years ago, but not anymore.

It is sort of like proving that the only way you can climb Mount Everest is by first climbing Mount Everest.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby kuha » Sat Nov 24, 2012 11:57 am

Conor Dary wrote:
Mighty Favog wrote:
Conor Dary wrote:
Mighty Favog wrote:

The thing I would most want to change about the Olympic Trials is a difficult nut to crack. How do you make it less stressful for the stars, especially those who double, yet maintain the essential idea of fairness?


We actually discussed this quite a bit in the lovely 'Shorten the Trials' thread. My idea was a sort of copy of the FA Cup in England. Over there all 72 pro teams play in it but the lower divisions play 3 rounds before the big boys show up.
This is more or less what the Canadians have gone to doing. The stars qualify straight to semis for sprints/hurdles/800, straight to finals for distance/field, and make up about half of those fields. The muggles go through q-rounds to fill out the semis or finals.

The predicted objection from the knuckleheads in Indy is that athletes need to learn how to run rounds and this will rob them of that. My response is that this isn't as important as in the 70s or 80s; if you go to the OG without ever having run in a Worlds, you're screwed anyway.


Interesting, so the Canadians are doing something like this already.

Never understood the 'knucklehead' objection. There is little evidence supporting it. No other country does it and they seem to do alright. It sort of made sense 40 years ago, but not anymore.

It is sort of like proving that the only way you can climb Mount Everest is by first climbing Mount Everest.


Yes, very interesting. Once again, the Canucks are way ahead of us. At the risk of re-re-re-redundancy, I've been one of the most vocal naysayers on the whole long-OT thing. The notion that there is any ATHLETIC benefit to following the full Olympic schedule in the Trials is just lunacy. First, OT rounds don't really have much to do with OG rounds--in the OT the early rounds are often nothing but a formality; in the OG, that's rarely the case. So we absolutely should NOT "train" our athletes to treat the first round of anything as a mere warmup. Second, what kind of world-class idiot would NOT "know" how to run rounds--and to train to run rounds? We might as well have mandatory seminars in tying shoe laces or catching the bouquet of flowers. Rounds aren't rocket science, and its 60 years since Bannister was surprised by the extra round in Helsinki. (And if he was surprised, so be it! The race had a winner after all.) In every other country, the Trials are a necessary step to the OG--and are treated, efficiently and concisely, as such. Only in the US do "we" have this wacky fetish about Track Woodstock, er, I mean the Trials--which ends up (for too many) as the be-all-and-end-all.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 18.99s » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:20 pm

bushop wrote:
18.99s wrote:This year there was only something like 1 week between the end of the trials and the deadline for submitting entries, so standards-chasing after the trials didn't make sense.

It would in field events.

Why does the type of event make a difference? If there is only one week between the end of trials and the IAAF/IOC deadline to submit entries, an athlete being in a field event doesn't change the logistical and administrative activities (and drug testing, to the extent possible within the time frame) that are to be completed on their behalf by the deadline.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Marlow » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:30 pm

18.99s wrote:Why does the type of event make a difference? If there is only one week between the end of trials and the IAAF/IOC deadline to submit entries, an athlete being in a field event doesn't change the logistical and administrative activities (and drug testing, to the extent possible within the time frame) that are to be completed on their behalf by the deadline.

The point was that there is virtually no recovery time needed in a field event. You could have a meet 3 days later with no detriment.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby bushop » Sat Nov 24, 2012 1:14 pm

18.99s wrote:
bushop wrote:
18.99s wrote:This year there was only something like 1 week between the end of the trials and the deadline for submitting entries, so standards-chasing after the trials didn't make sense.

It would in field events.
Why does the type of event make a difference?

I meant performance wise... not considering the logistics of it.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Mighty Favog » Sat Nov 24, 2012 2:51 pm

Unfortunately I do believe the Trials must serve two masters. It is the biggest domestic competition in any four-year period and the only one that mainstream sports media pays any attention to. So to minimize its length or spectacle in not in the interest of US t&f as a professional spectator sport. I mean, when was the last time we've gotten 15,000 people in a stadium for a meet that did not include either high schoolers or the word "Olympic" in its title?

But if we use the Canadian model, we can still have that big-time event without wearing out the stars. I don't think the issue is the number of days nor the number of rounds so much as the number of rounds that the stars have to go through. If Felix has to run four races in ten days, that's not a big deal for her. Ditto for Rupp doing two races or Claye doing two jumps finals. More than that and you're starting to ask too much of the stars--and it's not like there's any drama that fans are going to miss in a breeze-through first round.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 3:14 pm

I still do not like it.

It requires some combination of a committee selection the athletes. With as little of play as there is we have seen people in charge exercise it in ways that have displeased a number of fans.

To the extent it uses a performance list to get its top-8, there will be massive venue shopping which aids the rich athlete over the up-and-coming one. If it looks like it is a mountain too high then a lot of people will not bother to pursue the sport as a profession.

What if an athlete clears 5.80 at a secondary meet. How do you know it is completely legit without homer assistance. How do you deny it as well. How much are you going to wind and altitude adjust the marks?

The law dudes might like this because it is ripe for litigation.

How do you seed those semis. Take the 200, the athletes that ran the real heats deserve the lane draws that come with it. That will not be allowed, so what we will get is that the semis are where the random lane draws occur. You could well knock out your favorite for the 200 by having them in Lane 1 in a heat with a lot of fast athletes.

If I can come up with this many issues in three minutes, I am sure that there are others. I would be interested in what gh has to say.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby bushop » Sat Nov 24, 2012 4:32 pm

Mighty Favog wrote:But if we use the Canadian model, we can still have that big-time event without wearing out the stars.

How is the current Canadian model different than the US American model?
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 4:47 pm

The Canadian situation is fundamentally different than the US: Population is one tenth and in almost all events anyone in the top three is more likely to be constrained by the A" standard than by not being top-3 (women's hurdles notwithstanding and they might have had thee in the men's 10,000 if Birue's NR was set in a later interval). Of course, the Canucks have been known to throw additional roadblocks in the way. [That way there are more travel funds for the 'suits'. :mrgreen: ]
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby Conor Dary » Sun Nov 25, 2012 7:51 am

26mi235 wrote:I still do not like it.

It requires some combination of a committee selection the athletes. With as little of play as there is we have seen people in charge exercise it in ways that have displeased a number of fans.

To the extent it uses a performance list to get its top-8, there will be massive venue shopping which aids the rich athlete over the up-and-coming one. If it looks like it is a mountain too high then a lot of people will not bother to pursue the sport as a profession.

What if an athlete clears 5.80 at a secondary meet. How do you know it is completely legit without homer assistance. How do you deny it as well. How much are you going to wind and altitude adjust the marks?

The law dudes might like this because it is ripe for litigation.

How do you seed those semis. Take the 200, the athletes that ran the real heats deserve the lane draws that come with it. That will not be allowed, so what we will get is that the semis are where the random lane draws occur. You could well knock out your favorite for the 200 by having them in Lane 1 in a heat with a lot of fast athletes.

If I can come up with this many issues in three minutes, I am sure that there are others. I would be interested in what gh has to say.


Actually gh has already had his input with his recent editorial that the way to go is with a 6 day Trials spread over 2 weekends. While not ideal, certainly better than what is the present situation.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Sun Nov 25, 2012 8:19 am

I meant on the notion of giving some 'selected' subset a big advantage into the last round(s).
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby polevaultpower » Sun Nov 25, 2012 10:13 am

At the end of the day, it's about getting medals at the Olympics. Athletes who are chasing qualifying marks are pretty much never in contention to win a medal.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 18.99s » Sun Nov 25, 2012 10:23 am

polevaultpower wrote:At the end of the day, it's about getting medals at the Olympics. Athletes who are chasing qualifying marks are pretty much never in contention to win a medal.

Exactly.

And this is not about limiting the trials to 8 per event, it's only about giving 8 or so a bye past the early round(s). Those who couldn't compete often enough to get a top-8 time (or whatever criteria for a bye) would still have the opportunity to qualify for the trials via the usual top 32 or whatever number is allowed for their event. They'll just have to go through all the rounds like everybody does today -- that's not any major tragedy or injustice.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby j-a-m » Sun Nov 25, 2012 11:12 am

18.99s wrote:They'll just have to go through all the rounds like everybody does today.

Wouldn't they have to go through one more round than with the current system? They'd basically have to make it through rounds to the final, but then the final turns out to be just the semifinal because eight more get added?
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 18.99s » Sun Nov 25, 2012 4:42 pm

j-a-m wrote:
18.99s wrote:They'll just have to go through all the rounds like everybody does today.

Wouldn't they have to go through one more round than with the current system? They'd basically have to make it through rounds to the final, but then the final turns out to be just the semifinal because eight more get added?


No. If an event normally has 3 rounds, put the "top 8" straight into the semifinals and all the rest fight for the remaining spots in the semi, same 3 rounds overall.

Or if it's something with 2 rounds like the 5000, advance the top 8 directly to the final, and then everybody else fights for the remaining spots in the final.
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Re: The Olympic Trials and Possible Improvements

Postby 26mi235 » Sun Nov 25, 2012 10:03 pm

Tell me how you seed the semis, please (I can think of some rules but each has some issues). As an exercise, go back to the last trials and see how your mechanism works in ALL events. Note that the protocol for the OGs would have a random draw for the semis. This implies that in the 200 and 400 that some of the top stars could end up in lane 1 and refer to gh's comments about this being the lane of death. If it creates some problems in events that you have not focused on I think it will likely have trouble being something that would even reach the discussion stage. Remember, there are a lot events overall.

One major problem I see is that you are recommending that we have a first weekend sequence that is of little interest to the media or the fans. Then, you hand a big competitive advantage to the 'chosen eight'.
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