Bolt blew it (Read 2037 times)

    No, reacting to the gun is not what's causing false starts and no I don't see "timing the gun" as reducing false starts either.  Probably it would create even more incentive for the guys that are just outside medal contention to gamble and see if they can get a jump without false starting, if the gun was exactly standard and they could get really good at timing it.  For a guy who's the 6th fastest guy in the field it might be worth a 50/50 risk of a false start to try and get a jump and get as close to the 100ms limit as possible without going over and so it might actually increase false starts.

     

    ***

     

    It should be noted that the zero tolerance rule has worked as advertised: there are fewer false starts than there used to be.

     

    The only thing I would add to this is that they should exactly standardize the start, eliminate the 100ms "cushion," and keep the zero tolerance rule. With an exactly standardized start, there should be no excuse to false start, but it would assume that sprinters are no longer reacting to the gun but timing the start.

      Everyone keeps saying that reacting to the gun is a "fundamental skill" in racing 100m. Yes, it has always been an important skill, but it seems very difficult to argue that this is a fundamental skill in racing 100m. In fact, the best 100m runner we've ever seen (Bolt) isn't that great at reacting to the gun. So, (as everyone knows by now) I just don't buy this argument. In fact, this point is never argued; it's just asserted as if it is totally obvious, and my suspicion is that it is treated this way precisely because the only argument for it is something like "we've always done it this way."

      In my view, the 100m has always required that one start well, accelerate well, have a high top speed, and lean well.  One needn't be the absolute best in the business at every one of those aspects (but it helps!); the athlete who can put together the best total package wins.  [FWIW, I don't think Bolt is slow to react to the gun, he just takes longer to unfold that 6'5" frame than guys 6-12 inches shorter.  IIRC, Carl Lewis had the same issue at 6'3".]  "The fastest man alive" title isn't applied to the guy with the highest top end.  It may be circular to you, but it's applied to the guy who wins the 100m dash ... a race that includes skills beyond greatest maximum velocity.

       

      Will you argue that the finishing lean should be replaced with, say, drawing vertical lines up from the hips in the finish photo and awarding places based on that?  What the hell does leaning have to do with being the Fastest Man Alive anyway?  We should totally standardize that.

       

       

      I thought the main topic was whether the current zero-tolerance false-start rule was better than its "first one charged to the field" predecessor.  I don't see it as a substantial change; previously there was incentive to false under the old system and, once that occurred, it became the same zero-tolerance scenario that we have now.

      “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

        In my view, the 100m has always required that one start well, accelerate well, have a high top speed, and lean well.  One needn't be the absolute best in the business at every one of those aspects (but it helps!); the athlete who can put together the best total package wins.  [FWIW, I don't think Bolt is slow to react to the gun, he just takes longer to unfold that 6'5" frame than guys 6-12 inches shorter.  IIRC, Carl Lewis had the same issue at 6'3".]  "The fastest man alive" title isn't applied to the guy with the highest top end.  It may be circular to you, but it's applied to the guy who wins the 100m dash ... a race that includes skills beyond greatest maximum velocity.

         

        Will you argue that the finishing lean should be replaced with, say, drawing vertical lines up from the hips in the finish photo and awarding places based on that?  What the hell does leaning have to do with being the Fastest Man Alive anyway?  We should totally standardize that.

         

         

        I thought the main topic was whether the current zero-tolerance false-start rule was better than its "first one charged to the field" predecessor.  I don't see it as a substantial change; previously there was incentive to false under the old system and, once that occurred, it became the same zero-tolerance scenario that we have now.

         

        Goddamn it, the lean isn't creating any problems, which is why we are not discussing it.

         

        (I'm really not mad, just totally perplexed as to how people are addressing this!)

          It is for the guys who can't lean for crap.  Unfair!

           

          (Aside: the first time I used a bib chip, I instinctively leaned at the finish mat.  This was in a half-marathon.)

          “Everything you need is already inside.” -- Bill Bowerman

            I chuckle.

            Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.

               No one is arguing that the current start system is unfair.

               

              It is for the guys who can't lean for crap.  Unfair!

                Will you argue that the finishing lean should be replaced with, say, drawing vertical lines up from the hips in the finish photo and awarding places based on that?  What the hell does leaning have to do with being the Fastest Man Alive anyway?  We should totally standardize that.

                 

                 

                Why draw a line up from the hips - why not just say that your entire body has to be across the finish line.  And for that matter, maybe they should make it so that your entire body has to be behind the start line too.

                  Why draw a line up from the hips - why not just say that your entire body has to be across the finish line.  And for that matter, maybe they should make it so that your entire body has to be behind the start line too.

                   

                  Give 'em 10 or 20 meters behind the starting line to get going, then if they time it right, their bodies will be behind the starting line when the gun sounds.

                  Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.

                    Also have flames shooting out of the ground at the finish line.  They're going fast enough that they shouldn't get burned but it would make for better tv.

                    Runners run.

                      Also have flames shooting out of the ground at the finish line.  They're going fast enough that they shouldn't get burned but it would make for better tv.

                       

                      Can we put a shark in the steeplechase pool too?


                      Feeling the growl again

                        The only thing I would add to this is that they should exactly standardize the start, eliminate the 100ms "cushion," and keep the zero tolerance rule. With an exactly standardized start, there should be no excuse to false start, but it would assume that sprinters are no longer reacting to the gun but timing the start.

                         

                        This logic says you are more OK with someone getting lucky and starting to go early, resulting in a takeoff 0.001s after the gun, than everyone having to wait and have to react to the same starting stimulus.  Slower sprinters will have every incentive to try and jump the gun to make up for a lack of speed.  I still don't understand the logic behind this.

                        "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                         

                          This logic says you are more OK with someone getting lucky and starting to go early, resulting in a takeoff 0.001s after the gun, than everyone having to wait and have to react to the same starting stimulus.  Slower sprinters will have every incentive to try and jump the gun to make up for a lack of speed.  I still don't understand the logic behind this.

                           

                          Timing it right would be due to skill, not luck, if the start were standardized. That's the logic. 

                           

                          I apologize for my total lack of clarity on this thread.

                          JimR


                            Timing it right would be due to skill, not luck, if the start were standardized. That's the logic. 

                             

                             

                            It would actually be skill for some, luck for others.  There will be sprinters willing to risk the DQ to beat a competitor to the punch and maybe make it to the podium.  That's what it introduces and that's what officials would like to avoid.

                              It would actually be skill for some, luck for others.  There will be sprinters willing to risk the DQ to beat a competitor to the punch and maybe make it to the podium.  That's what it introduces and that's what officials would like to avoid.

                               

                              That's why you keep the zero tolerance rule, to discourage this. If a sprinter wants to risk a DQ, so be it.

                               

                              I believe that this would lead to fewer false starts, as sprinters could really learn to time it well given the standardization, but perhaps I am wrong about this.

                              Scout7


                              CPT Curmudgeon

                                That's why you keep the zero tolerance rule, to discourage this. If a sprinter wants to risk a DQ, so be it.

                                 

                                I believe that this would lead to fewer false starts, as sprinters could really learn to time it well given the standardization, but perhaps I am wrong about this.

                                 

                                You give a lot of credit to the sprinters.....