Friday, December 16, 2016

Who Else is On The Sportscaster Card? - Post #001

I like the cards that show more than just the player pictured.  I decided to learn more about the photos to try to figure out who else was depicted on the card.

I was reminded of that plan today while sorting some of my new Sportscaster cards.  I was reading Peter Snell's card and about his three gold medals in the 1960 and 1964 Olympics.  The photo showed him finishing a race and the caption mentioned that it was in the 1964 Olympics.

I decided to figure out who the other two guys in the photo were.  The back of the card didn't mention it so I went online and found out that it was a first-round race in the 1500m.  Snell was fourth behind Tom O'Hara of the USA who was third and Stig Lindback of Sweden was fifth.   Volker Tolzer of Austria was 6th.  Only the top four qualified for the semi-finals.  Neither O'Hara nor Lindback appear on their own card in the USA set.  

Wait, Tom O'Hara?  He's one of the few famous athletic alums from the school that employs me.  He was a former world-record holder in the mile (3:56.4 indoors), having held that record for just over 10 years.  A few years ago he accompanied the boys' team to a meet in Washington, DC.  

For those who might be interested in running progressions, O'Hara was only a 4:20 miler in high school.  I don't know if he ever held the high school's record in the mile, but by 1981 the record was 4:14 (1600m, which is just over 1 second shorter).  In the last four years three more runners from that team, which I don't coach, have run under 4:14.  

Without doing any more research it appears as though O'Hara is no better than fifth on his high school's list of top milers.  And he went on to set a world Record!  I will try to see if the current coaches know where he stands on the all-time list.  

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