Let’s face it, 55 meters is an odd distance.
So when high school sprinter/football player Marvin Bracy ran 6.08 for 55 meters, a lot of people just took it as a new High School National Record. And they should!
How fast is that?
“Rocket” Raghib Ismail (another sprinter/football) of Notre Dame University ran 6.07 for 55 meters in Jan 1991, while Lee McRae (a true sprinter) of Pittsburgh holds the world record at 6.00 seconds set in 1986.
So 6.08 is damned fast.
Was it a False Start?
But was it a false start?
Was it a true “IAAF 0.100 reaction time” false start? For more information starting blocks and reaction times, read The Rocket Sprint Start.
We don’t know for sure, and we’ll never know, as electronic sensors were not used in this race.
Here is the video on YouTube.
Take a look at the video below. After the race in real time, the video is slowed at 50% speed.
Take a close look at the smoke from the gun, and see who reacts (or anticipates) to the gun. A frame by frame analysis (using NTSC at 29.97 frames per second) showed Marvin Bracy moved 0.06 seconds from the visual smoke, which means he heard it a fraction slower. (sound takes longer to travel than light)
So if electronic sensors were installed, it would have triggered a false start being less than 0.100 seconds.
I’m not taking anything away from Marvin Bracy, as he would have demolished the field no matter how good or bad his start.
Instant replay for Track and Field, anyone?
Or just better Officials?