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|Subject: ||RE: HUGE INJUSTICE at USA's|
I just don't get what the USATF was doing here with the 800's.
If the goal is simply to identify the 3 qualifiers for the Worlds teams, they could have a tighter A standard, only take 16 athletes and run only two rounds.
If the goal is replicate the three rounds of the WC's, as others have pointed out, those rounds will be full heats, so USATF should have taken 32 for the men like the did for the women.
If the goal is to make sure the races and qualified athletes are truly competitive, they went about it backwards with the men and the women. The 2:05.00 A standard for women was nearly six seconds slower the 3rd qualifier, while the men's A was just over three seconds slower than Jock's 3rd place. And yet only one B was taken for the men while six B women were taken "...for competitiveness" as the USATF says in their guidelines. I cannot see how the women's races were made more competitive but taking comparatively less accomplished athletes than the men who were sent home.
The biggest question is: Why is this subjective at all?
And I can't come up with a good reason. Our sport is about exactness and precision. You don't arrive at a meet wondering if we're going to run 750, 800, or 820 today. Our current system seems designed to the maximize arbitrary of the committee.
Here's what I'd suggest instead.
- When the A and B standards are published, publish the field size as well.
- When deciding the field size, fill all the damn lanes, in the name of both competitive equity, and in the name of getting more people into the meet. The competition in the men's 800 was not improved by having 5 empty lanes in the first round.
- Allow additional athletes to come to the national meet as alternates if there are late scratches so the lanes are full.
More people in the meet means more food sales, more ticket sales, more hotels paid for, more everything. An official was quoted earlier in the thread as saying if they accept more athletes into the meet that means more free tickets for athletes and coaches. Hey, genius official, the people you don't accept into the meet don't come anyway and buy tickets - they stay home. As do their coaches and families, and other supporters.
Come on USATF, do better. Please.
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