Thursday, May 18, 2006
All a matter of perspective
The New York Times reported that Justin Gatlin set the world record in the 100 meters last Friday at a Grand Prix meet in Doha, Qatar, winning the race in 9.76 seconds.
Gatlin, a 24-year-old native of Brooklyn, took a hundredth of a second off the time Asafa Powell of Jamaica ran June 14 in Athens. In a conference call with reporters Gatlin said:
"It hasn't hit me yet, I'm astounded. I went out there and put together a pretty good race, and I put a lot of heart in the race... Even halfway through the race, I said to myself, Be patient; get to the transition phase."
I found myself smiling reading that last paragraph. It took longer to read than Gatlin did to run the race, and five seconds into that race he was saying to himself, "Be patient; get to the transition phase". By the time he had said that, he would have been 2 seconds from the finish line.