Tuesday, May 27, 2008

BEIJING 2008 Athletics: Track

PART 1: 100m-800m

If we were to discuss the finer points of all 15 track events at the Beijing Games I would be old and grey by the time we finished. So here's a brief overview of each.

100m: Jamaica's Asafa Powell is the world record holder mon but Tyson "I'm Not" Gay is the 2007 World Champion. There is speculation that Powell chokes on the big stage, finishing a disappointing 5th at Athens when favourite and being beaten into 3rd at the World's by Gay. The Americans seem to be trying to convey some sort of subliminal sexual message with Walter Dix joining Gay at Beijing. Australia are a fat, slow and generally white nation. We are without individual representation and relay teams in the both the 100m and 200m in both the men's and women's. Shirvo and Patrick Johnson are our fastest runners and they are old and not really that fast. Shirvo is white and Johnson is not black enough. Tough times.

100m/110m Hurdles: In the 100m hurdles (women's) Sally McLellan is being tipped as a dark horse for a medal for Australia. In the 110m (men's) we are once again too slow. Hopefully there are some awful stacks with faceplants and body parts getting tangled up in hurdles; have a sneaky fiver on McLellan "doing a Bradbury".

200m: "I'm Not" Gay is also 200m favourite. His main opposition comes from Usain "In The Membrane" Bolt and Wallace Spearmon. And where there's Gay, Dix seems to follow. After running the second fastest 200m ever last year, look for Gay to give Michael Johnson's WR a nudge. Australia's last chance to scrape into Beijing in this event was disqualified for turning up to his final tryout like this:

Australia's Daniel Batman; playing silly buggers when he should be trying to crack 20.75s...

400m: This is expected to be a one act affair. Watching this guy blitz his opposition is even more fun with a Swedish race-caller. Go to Youtube and type in Jeremy Wariner, Stockholm for a look. Wariner is tipped to go close to Michael Johnson's WR of 43.13 at Beijing. Aussies John Steffensen, Shaun Wroe and Joel Milburn will be looking to cause a massive upset. In the women Tamsyn "Jana Is Such A Bitch" Lewis will compete for Australia though the 800m is her pet distance.

4x400m: The Aussie squad includes the three guys mentioned above as well as Dylan Grant and Clinton Hill. Thanks to Hill's kick-ass final leg at Athens, the boys were able to grab silver which they'll be looking to emulate. Chance of beating the U.S and grabbing gold...zero.

400m Hurdles: Jana "Tamsyn Is A Slag" Rawlinson's event. She is two time World Champion but is still looking for that Olympic gold after her well publicised injury dramas before Athens. Loves the camera does Rawlinson. Waiting for another poorly timed soap opera before Beijing. Otherwise should be in the mix for the Gold medal.

800m: The best thing about the 800m at Beijing is:

Tamsyn Lewis

Although Tamsyn is the reigning 800m World Champion, she'll start as underdog with the bookies behind Yelena Soboleva. No doubt will start favourite amongst teenage boys though. Australia also are represented in the men's by Lachlan Renshaw.

Next edition: 1500m+

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