100 metres - Gatlin wins/UK crowd boos

Discussion in 'All Other Sports' started by The_Blindside, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/athletics/40842008

    Thought it was an interesting discussion between Steve Cram and Michael Johnson yesterday on BBC after Gatlin won and he was booed after the race and at the medal ceremony. Thoughts?

    I think they both have strong points well made. MJ saying that Gatlin shouldn't be the only one singled out because of his drugs past, and being presented as the villain and Bolt the saviour. Cram was guilty of this in his commentary 2 years ago alluding that Bolt beating Gatlin may have saved the sport. But Cram firing back saying that Gatlin, no matter how much he dislikes this, is front face of athletics running in the marquee event compared to a discus throwe who is a drugs cheat who finishes 12th.

    For me Gatlin winning just highlights how tainted the sport is and him winning shows how bad the system is letting him back in. I have no problem with him winning, as the rules allowed him to. Bolt just didn't run well enough, you could tell he was really struggling in the earlier rounds. He got away with it 2 years ago in Beijing when Gatlin choked at the finish, but didn't this time. The fact it was his farewell (still to be convinced) is beside the point.
     
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  3. ncurd

    ncurd Senior Member

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    I've no problem with him serving his ban and competing again (and winning) there has to be a level on any charge where someone deserves to come back. If he'd been twice banned as a professional (the first ban was before he was pro and was quashed) he should of served a life ban. 4 years however was entirely reasonable especially as he then acted as whistle blower.

    However that said being allowed to return doesn't mean he gets the instant respect from the fans and they are fully within their rights to boo. Gatlin and others may not like it but he tainted his own brand and the reality is despite his ban many don't want him to win. He has to accept that it will take a very long time for people to accept him probably beyond his career considering his age. Be content he can compete and win then just live with it. Actions have consequences his is he couldn't compete for 4 years, probably can't command endorsement money like he once did and that crowds don't like him. Considering he still probably earns more than the rest us thats a pretty small price to pay.
     
  4. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    Yohan Blake was also banned for drugs cheating, came back to race and finished 4th. But he wasn't booed by the UK crowd. In fact Gatlin raced in 2012 in the Olympics and was also not booed then.

    Is it just a case the media have just created this narrative of Bolt is clean and therefore hero and Gatlin = 2x cheat and villain now beats Bolt and crowd don't like it without understanding the wider implications of PEDs in sport and the system needs overhauling?
     
  5. ncurd

    ncurd Senior Member

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    I don't think many people liked Gatlin in 2012 but yes the booing is new. But I think back in 2012 Bolt was untouchable so it was less of a story.

    In addition I imagine the makeup of the crowd was very different. I know people who went to the final whereas I didn't in 2012 the tickets would of also cost far less. So I imagine atmosphere wise it was completely different. Having been part of the Olympic bubble 5 years ago would skewed my perception though.
     
  6. Old Hooker

    Old Hooker Senior Member

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    Main thing with Gatlin is that he's been done twice. Most fans of the sport, me included, think that should be a life ban; in fact most of us don't even believe in a second chance.

    Then there's the school of thought that PEDs can benefit performance years after taking them. Maybe the difference a decade on where margins are 1/100ths.

    Plus he's got the Dwain Chambers syndrome of not being the fluffiest of bunnies.

    And by beating Bolt in his farewell he's the man who shot, dismembered, and then ate, Bambi.

    The crowd didn't know who they were booing though. Gatlin may have been the lightning rod, but he, and others, was only there thanks to the smartass lawyers who've made it virtually impossible to impose life bans.
     
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  7. Every Time Ref

    Every Time Ref Senior Member

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    Booing's the least of it, he's unbelievably lucky that he's there to be booed at all. I don't believe in lifetime bans for a first offence, but for a second, absolutely 100% you have forfeited the right to compete in any elite sport ever again.

    I don't agree with ncurd that the first ban counts for less because he was not a professional - that's irrelevant to what he did, not being paid doesn't make it any less despicable. (Disclaimer - I don't follow athletics closely and know all the ins and outs of his case, but as I understand it there is no question of his being guilty in both cases. Happy to reconsider if my information is wrong)

    I know that doping in sport is a complex issue, I know there are massive obstacles in terms of culture within certain sports, I know that the solutions are difficult and complicated and stretch way beyond simplyhandingbout bans. And I know it's naive to assume that every drugs cheat is a monster and that decent people don't get corrupted by the environment - nonetheless, I absolutely cannot condone giving convicted drugs cheats a THIRD chance (outside of truly exceptional circumstances). I mean for ****'s sake, he did it, got caught, faced all the shame and humiliation of being labelled a cheat within the sport, served the ban, came back ... and said "you know what, hand me those roids, imma juice my way to gold again!"

    **** Justin Gatland, seriously
     
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  8. ncurd

    ncurd Senior Member

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    Details of first ban which was a 'minor' offence. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/athletics/40847986
    Reality is your right he should of learned something from that incident and not done it ever again. However part of me does thing he was 19 the first time and 24 the second, he's now 35....but been competing again since 28.

    I think the problem comes down to the length and details of the first ban he was essentially given a slap on the wrist as it was probably a technicality. However it probably tempted him into doing it again at a relatively young age. If he had a heavy ban the first time the second time may never have happened.
     
  9. Every Time Ref

    Every Time Ref Senior Member

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    I suppose there are some possible mitigating circumstances there, but the "I took some cold medicine with steroids in" bullshit has been around a long time and precedent has been well and truly set that a professional athlete is responsible for everything he puts in his body and should check any medication out very carefully. Sad to say I think it is orders of magnitude more likely that a professional athlete is dishonest enough to dope than that one would be lax enough to take a medicine without checking it carefully for banned substances.

    Added to which, the second offence casts significant doubt on the first doesn't it? If Justin Gatland had never doped again I'd be more inclined to accept the first was a genuine mistake
     
  10. ncurd

    ncurd Senior Member

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    Agreed which is why I think he was originally given at 8 year ban which IMHO was too significantly reduced due to cooperation with authorities in saying how fellow athletes were at it.
     
  11. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    That's the problem. I'm a huge Bolt fan, but even I can see he is now past his best. But he has been made out to be some Demi god who has a god given right to finish as a winner. Had Coleman won gold there wouldn't have been a problem. But the fact it was Gatlin and what he "represents" and that he had the temerity to beat Bolt with his history. It is the rules that stink, not Gatlin. This whole drugs issue can't be lumped on his shoulders, and Bolt shouldn't be made out to save the sport, as he will be gone after this week from Athletics. The fact this is the 100m the no.1 headline act in Track and field doesn't help, of course. Gatlin winning was poetic justice to remind Athletics that PEDs tarnishing their sport is not going away and no one man can save it from the problem.

    Anyone want a decent read have a look at "the dirtiest race in history" by Richard Moore covering the 1988 100m Olympic final.
     
  12. Old Hooker

    Old Hooker Senior Member

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    Read it! Away from rugby, athletics and cycling are my two main sports.....been rough times in both.

    Have long though before elite rugby starts getting a problem? Drastically increased money and a never ending pressure to be bigger and faster is a toxic recipe......in fact I'm very sceptical that it's only been lower level players that have been caught up to now.
     
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  13. Which Tyler

    Which Tyler Senior Member

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    We have a problem, we just haven't had to face up to it yet... IMO the principal area for the problem (in England at least) is teenage boys piling on the punds to get that first contract.
    They're playing at a level where they'd get the biggest benefits from doping for a few months and the least chance of getting busted.
     
  14. Every Time Ref

    Every Time Ref Senior Member

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    It is the rules and Gatland. Whatever we say about doping, the rules around it and their application, it takes nothing away from Justin Gatland's choice to cheat.
     
  15. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    Who is this Justin Gatland? Related to Warren?;)
     
  16. George Ford

    George Ford Senior Member

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    It's just unfortunate how Gatlin's marvelous victory is marred by his past but - like it or not - the record will state he is now the 100m world champion. He beat the GOAT and I shall applaud him the same way as anybody else for his achievement.

    Not scripted and perhaps just what Bolt needs to re-think his retirement. His sheer dominance in sprints for almost a decade goes unprecedented in athletics history and there is no guaranteeing we'll ever witness this kind of feat by future generations, even if his records will surely be broken.

    On the race itself, I think the Americans was just that much better prepared (and determined) than Bolt, in spite of what the Jamaican said of his shape prior to the race. He had a lot of ground to make up for his typical bad start and he was gaining on them towards the end, albeit little too late.

    Form and temperament are crucial factors on a sprinter's performance on the day and I think this whole last race and retirement thing took away that edge of competitiveness and mental toughness leading up to the event. He came 3rd with a time of 9.95s and it's his season's best? His prior races didn't even feature any Olympic finalists hence he boasted SB of 10.05s prior to the events.

    I still think he has more in that tank of his and the mere fact that he got beaten by a competitor 4 years his senior (now a rival) could perhaps only motivate him to go another one up on his rival again.

    But at the same time to be able to retire at a fairly young age of 30 after a star-studded career is, perhaps, a dime of a feeling in itself. 2018 is an off year for major athletic events (like 2014 was) and the next major one is the 2019 IAAF World Champs in Qatar, followed by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. My guess is the next headline he makes is announcing his comeback few months before the world champs leading up to the Olympics.
     
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  17. TRF_Olyy

    TRF_Olyy English Arrogance

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  18. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    Yep I also think it was a mistake for Bolt to announce beforehand this would be his last championships. But I think injuries to his back and hamstrings have taken their toll and as he has said the training is no longer fun any more. If he's no longer training 100% then that be a big explaination in his decline. I remain skeptical, however, that this will be his last and he won't come out of retirement in time for Tokyo (ala Phelps after London and then went onto Rio). A year or two away from training may well remotivate him and allow old injuries to heal.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
  19. themole25

    themole25 Senior Member

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    i find it oddly suspicious how few high level PED suspensions there have been in rugby

    New Zealand apparently has only suspended one player for PED use and it was a teenager... i know it's huge in American rugby and we don't even take the sport that seriously
     
  20. The_Blindside

    The_Blindside Senior Member

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    Interesting read, but old as it dates back to 2008. I will give the benefit of the doubt to Bolt until proven otherwise. I like to think, however, sceptical I can be, there is a little bit of nativity within me that still wants to believe he is clean. You say zero chance of him being clean but this doesn't take into account what a freak Bolt was at his peak and that he can cover the 100 metres in 41 strides compared to the average of his competitors who run it in 45/46 strides. And match the frequency of the strides of his competitors. That's what gave him the distinct phyisiological point of difference, which his competitors could not match when he got into his full stride between 50 and 85 metres.

    Maybe it is a conspiracy to hide Bolt's "cheating", for if ever proven he is using, it would be the final nail in the coffin for athletics and the 100m.

    They should keep hold of his urine, blood, Biological passport long after he's retired and test it when testing techniques catch up.
     
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  21. TRF_Olyy

    TRF_Olyy English Arrogance

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    I, too, would love him to be clean.

    I imagine they will keep testing his samples, they've caught some high profile cheaters from the last few Olympic games recently by testing old samples.


    His comments about using them to level the playing field are interesting. How some athletes have naturally high testosterone levels so everyone else is at a disadvantage and juices to catch up.
     
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