Final Thoughts on Swimming and Trials

The Olympic Trials in the United States’ two most successful sports are complete, and the week was full of fantastic moments. There are few smiles like those of someone who has just become an Olympian, and fans saw dozens of those this week. I won’t lie – more than a few tears trickled down my cheeks when watching the trials. A few disparate thoughts before I go to bed:

– Tyson Gay’s fall in the semis of the 200m broke my heart. First, the manner in which he fell reminded me of when I fell running (very short, very terrible dalliance into the sport) and dislocated my knee (why I stopped.) I was very happy to hear it was not that serious. Secondly, I hate that he won’t be running the 200 for the US. However, I do not think that the misfortune of one man is a reason to change an entire system that quite frankly, works just fine. There are two reasons why the trials for track work. One – the United States is loaded. We have tons of talent. Secondly, track (and swimming for that matter) is an objective sport – who is the fastest. No judges, no degree of difficulty, no petitions or lawsuits. If you run the fastest, you’re in. I have no worries for the United States in track and field. We will do just fine, even with Tyson Gay only running 100m.

– Dara Torres was the cause for many of my tears this week. How could she not be? A 41-year-old mom who is swimming at her best? I tend to believe people, sometimes causing me to be gullible. Pat Forde doubts that Dara has come by her swimming renaissance fairly, and I am embarrassed to say that it never even occurred to me that she didn’t.

– The broadcasts for both swimming and track were very good. The announcers were careful to explain qualifying procedures, back stories, athletes’ accolades and the nuances of each event. The puff pieces were kept to a minimum, but still good. The broadcasts weren’t perfect – the post-event interviews were always a little weird, but still, these broadcasts far outpaced gymnastics.

Now, we wait. Most Olympians have been decided, though some gymnastics team members are still up in the air. The Games kick off in a little more than a month. For now, we can just sit back and enjoy the hype.

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6 Responses to “Final Thoughts on Swimming and Trials”


  1. 1 Tuffy July 7, 2008 at 11:19 am

    The throttle’s been sticking on my hype machine. If you have time, could you please take a look at it? Thanks!

  2. 2 Krista July 12, 2008 at 5:01 am

    First off, I just want to say that I just found your blog and I LOVE it!! I too am obsessed with the Olympics and watched all the trials faithfully. Your coverage is great…I look forward to reading your posts all throughout the Games!

    Now to my real comment…I was initially gullible about Dara Torres too, smiling and tearing up for when she won her swims. Then my fiance pointed out the similarity between her accomplishments and those of certain baseball players who supposedly peaked in their 40s. I will be heartbroken if we learn later that she’s dirty. Just like I was heartbroken when Marion Jones went to jail. I just don’t know if I can believe Dara, as much as I want to.

  3. 3 Chitown Chick July 12, 2008 at 10:41 pm

    Thanks, Krista. I took some time off from the Games this week, but don’t worry, I’ll have lots to write about in the coming weeks.

    With Torres, everything I’m reading now is that she made a concerted effort to meet with Anti-Doping officials to avoid even the appearance of impropriety, so hopefully, all will be well.

  4. 4 Marina H. Valentine January 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    – Tyson Gay’s fall in the semis of the 200m broke my heart. First, the manner in which he fell reminded me of when I fell running (very short, very terrible dalliance into the sport) and dislocated my knee (why I stopped.) I was very happy to hear it was not that serious. Secondly, I hate that he won’t be running the 200 for the US. However, I do not think that the misfortune of one man is a reason to change an entire system that quite frankly , works just fine. There are two reasons why the trials for track work. One – the United States is loaded. We have tons of talent. Secondly, track (and swimming for that matter) is an objective sport – who is the fastest. No judges, no degree of difficulty, no petitions or lawsuits. If you run the fastest, you’re in. I have no worries for the United States in track and field. We will do just fine, even with Tyson Gay only running 100m.

  5. 5 Cyrus E. Hammond January 24, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    The girls with the larger leg muscles are, usually, involved in another sport as well. Most of my old high schools track team females were involved with basketball and volleyball. If you’re just running track you’re only using certain muscles over and over again – if you’re doing other sports the “non-track” muscles get a chance to work and, in turn, get stronger/bigger. I wouldn’t be worried about your leg muscles getting larger. After all, you should be joining track because you like it – not because of how your legs will look.

  6. 6 Jame Hodges November 23, 2013 at 11:18 pm

    When John and Robert Kennedy next saw their father, Joe Kennedy , he told them signing Johnson as running mate was the smartest thing they had ever done.


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