Call me old school, but the 2011 Daegu World Championship’s new improved schedule doesn’t appeal to me.
I’m referring to the swapping of the relays. The men’s 4x400m finals are on Friday, the women’s 4x400m are on Saturday, and both 4x100m finals are on Sunday, the last day.
It’s obvious the IAAF is catering towards having Jamaica and Usain Bolt as the grand finale to the meet. I can’t blame them for that. But I can guarantee if Glenn Mills and Jamaica puts Bolt on the 4x400m relay, they wouldn’t touch the schedule! Jamaica will have a hard time beating the Americans despite the rising stars of Jermaine Gonzales and Ricardo Chambers.
What bugs me is the men’s 200m semi-finals are also on Friday, about 80 minutes before the 4x400m relay. With that in mind, you can throw out any chance of a 200m sprinter running the 4x400m. This isn’t high school or College track.
I like the 4x400m as the final event. Why? First, because anything goes. Second, it’s the event where you can tap your 400m specialists, as well as 200m, 800m, 400m hurdlers, and even the rare 110m hurdlers (remember Allan Johnson?). Third, it’s the LAST event of the meet so you give it a full 100%. No saving yourself for Zurich. (Sorry, Suzy)
Now granted, the IAAF World Championships isn’t a national championships nor a state meet, but the relays are the ONLY team events in Track and Field (other than team scoring). Some call it a showcase of Elite track and field.
If Track and Field is going to move forward, then they will need some creative marketing ideas, and not rely solely on Usain Bolt. I’m not referring to the no-false-start rule or limiting the throws and jumps to only 4 attempts, which I think is CRAP.
Maybe a 3000 or 5000 meter pursuit where the last runner at each lap is immediately disqualified? This will certainly bring back the 1956 Vladimir Kutz style to racing!