Forum postsTotal 6 posts found, here are 3 latest posts:
Joe, what you wrote is the stuff of an excellent article on the decathlon—in both content and spirit. You could reshape it into a piece for publication of great interest in any of the track and field periodicals. I appreciate the insight, especially your comment, “I would like to submit that maybe it is fear that plays a stronger role. Fear of the unknown, fear of pain, fear of many things actually.” You reminded me of how I broke my school age-group record in the high jump only in practice but did poorly in competitions: fear. It also made me realize how I did break my school age-group record in the long jump and did well in competitions: fearless. If I had become a decathlete, I would have had to overcome that fear.

Here’s my thought on your unarguably accurate sidenote about the generally weak 1,500 meter- performance of the premier decathletes. I have always known this fact, but I really don’t care about their relatively slow times—as long as that’s the best they can do. As an example, use Janvrin’s developmental and peak performance levels throughout his 22-year, 90+ decathlon career. His high-jump heights are not among the best in decathlon history, but he performed consistently. His 1,500-meter times are among the best in decathlon history, and he performed consistently. This is the main reason that Janvrin’s decathlon career is beyond reproach and the man himself is so respected among his peers. I don’t care whether he never won a world championship or Olympic medal. (He was, of course, a US and a Pan Am Games champion, and he won a mind-boggling 15 Drake Relays decathlons.) What I do care about is that he did his level best in all ten events whenever he stepped on that track—regardless of who showed up. By the way, Janvrin achieved most of his accolades while handling the full-time pressures of working as a college athletics coach. Joe, all the best in Indianapolis!

Thanks, Trey. Those training observations about Kilmartin are exactly what I’ve been looking for about him ever since I followed his peerless high school career, when he broke the national indoor pentathlon and outdoor decathlon records for high schoolers. Now, I’d like to learn more about your training regimen and observations on your performances. Such comments would generate greater interest in the sport.

Janek, that last entry by Trey Hardee is precisely what fans like me do not get enough of. Those comments belong in a Decathlete's Journal section on Decathlon2000. I'd bet that such a section would fill up quickly.

Thanks for the thoughtful comments, Trey. Your response got to me to think of what a great idea it would be for you and other competitive decathletes to announce their schedules on Decathlon2000 so that fans like me can keep a more focused eye on the action. Janek, could you run a Forum just for decathletes to post their plans, results, etc.?

Trey, all the best to you and Donovan Kilmartin with the NCAA Championships next week! I hope you come in 1-2!

You are a world-class decathlete, as I’ve already mentioned, so I highly value your opinion on this point. I also would not be surprised at a world record by Bryan Clay this year—but he would have to accomplish it with a respectable 1,500, based on his own standards, as I’m sure you would agree.

When you say, “You’ve obviously never competed in more than 4 decathlons in a year, much less two within a month’s time,” you are attacking me and not my position. Comparing me to Clay is like comparing your boxing ability to Lennox Lewis’s, or Chad Smith’s striking and ball handling ability to Ronaldo’s. But now that you’ve made me the issue, I will prove my point by making myself the comparison to Clay. I last competed in track and field, for family and economic reasons, at age 14 in 1968. The distances of my throws (10 shot, 30 discus, 45 javelin) were many meters shorter than Clay’s, the distance and heights of my jumps (6 long , 1.6 high, 3 vault) were many centimeters shorter than Clay’s, and my sprints and hurdles (11.6 100, 55.0 400, 17.5 hurdles) were many seconds slower than Clay’s. But as mediocre as I was, even for a 14-year boy, I ran the 1,500 in 5:00. And, believe me, a 1,500-meter time of 5:00 is mediocre, even for a 14-year old boy. Case closed.


A quick response to the four comments posted on my article: