I want to go on record that I truly respect Simon Magakwe. His story is a “rags to riches” feel-good story. Everyone loves underdogs and heroes.
I wrote about Simon Magakwe way back in 2009, and I’m happy to see him still at it.
What I don’t like is inaccurate journalism, which is the point of this article.
Make no mistake, Simon Magakwe is fast and he deserves to be in the sub-10 club and make the Olympic or World Championships final.
Image credits: SYDNEY SESHIBEDI
My gripe is this. I am referring to this article where they claim:
For the last 60m of his race, Magakwe was “right up there with the very best in the world”, apart from Bolt, said Helen Bayne, a bio-mechanist at the centre.
From 40m to 60m, Magakwe took 1.74sec, the same as Bailey and three-hundredths of a second slower than Powell. The South African ran the final 40m in 3.42sec – identical to Powell.
His problem area was the first 20m, which he covered in 2.98sec, six-hundredths of a second slower than Bailey and Gay, seven-hundredths behind Powell and nine-hundredths slower than Bolt.
“Magakwe’s top speed doesn’t rival Bolt’s, but is certainly in the same league as any other sprinter,” said Bayne.
“To further improve on his 9.98 he will need to improve his start and maintain the speed he currently has at the end of the race.”
Looking at the chart below, you know those numbers don’t add up.
Here is how they really stack up:
|Simon Magakwe||Asafa Powell||Usain Bolt|
From the table above, we can see Simon Magakwe is “up there” with the big boys, but clearly Usain Bolt is in a league of his own.
A sub 10 is an awesome feat, something I never accomplished for me or my athletes, but running 3 rounds with a sub 10.05 in the semi finals just to make a Major Championship Final is another story.