DFL

Celebrating last-place finishes at the Olympics. Because they're there, and you're not.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Late Results for Thursday, August 21

Athletics: Women's javelin: Rumyana Karapetrova of Bulgaria, 26, had the shortest best throw in the qualifying round; she finished last in group B with 40.15 metres. Two competitors in the qualifying round had no mark. The gold medallist's final score was 71.42 metres. Women's 200 metre: Samia Yusuf Omar of Somalia, 17, was considerably behind the rest of the field with her time, in heat five, of 32.16 seconds. The gold medallist's time in the final was 21.74 seconds. There were two DNSes in the heats. Men's triple jump: In group B of the qualifying round, Indian Renjith Maheswary, 22, had a best jump of 15.77 metres; the gold medallist's best in the final was 17.67 metres. Two athletes had no mark in the qualifying round. Men's 400 metre: 20-year-old Liu Xiaosheng of China put in the only plus-50-second time in the heats; his time in heat two was 53.11 seconds. The gold medallist's final time was 43.75 seconds. There was one DNS in the heats. Men's 110-metre hurdles: Heat three saw Pakistani hurdler Abdul Rashid, 29, finish with a time of 14.52 seconds; the gold medallist's final time was 12.93 seconds. There were two DNFs and one DNS in the heats.

Diving: In the event, Annette Gamm of Germany, 31, finished 29th in the preliminary round with a score of 234.3; the lowest score to advance was 291.9.

Equestrian: In individual jumping, John Whitaker, 58, riding Peppersteak Peppermill for Great Britain, was 77th in the qualifying round and did not advance.

Upper-Class Twit of the Year Modern Pentathlon: Most competitors at the back of the field in this event can blame a DNF in the equestrian leg, giving them zero points. Horses is difficult. Such was the case in the run today, in which Jaime Lopez of Spain, 22, was 36th with 4,196 points and 5:59 behind the gold medallist, who had 5,632 points.

Standings to date: China adds its eighth last-place finish and its third today, taking first place from Canada, which falls to second. Germany adds a seventh to move into third, and Britain adds a fifth to move into fifth position, oddly enough. Spain's third DFL is good for 19th place, Pakistan's second for 29th.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Late Results for Wednesday, February 22

Alpine Skiing: In the , Indian skier Neha Ahuja, 24, finished 51st. Her time after two runs was 1:56.16 -- 27 seconds behind the gold medallist. A total of 13 people were disqualified, did not finish or did not start. celebrating her status as the first woman from India to qualify for the Winter Olympics.

Freestyle Skiing: In
, 25-year-old Australian skier Elizabeth Gardner finished 23rd in the qualification round with a score of 127.42. For comparison, the gold medallist's score in the final round was 202.55.

Short Track: Only eight teams in the , and they all made the finals, so, for once, the last-place finisher is elementary: it's whoever came fourth in the B final. In this case, that's Japan, who I guess finished 7th because China was disqualified in the A final. The team members are Yuka Kamino, 25, Mika Ozawa, 20, Chikage Tanaka, 32, and Nobuko Yamada, 34.

Speed Skating: Over on the long track, Romania's Daniela Oltean, who came last in the women's 1,000-metre on Sunday, finished 35th again in the today. Her time of 2:09.24 was nearly 14 seconds behind that of the gold medallist. It probably didn't help that she had to skate alone in her race rather than be paired against another skater.

Standings to date: Romania regains the lead, Japan moves into fifth place, and India and Australia enter the standings in 20th and 29th place, respectively.

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Saturday, August 28, 2004

But You're Missing the Point!

Sandeep Dwivedi has a column in the Indian Express bemoaning India's poor Olympic performance (a perennial problem, it seems -- see previous entry), and cites my listing India's last-place finish in the 49er sailing event (reported here). He writes:
We can laugh it off, or we can look at it this way: Do we really need the humiliation of seeing our runners, boxers, archers, wrestlers, swimmers, oarsmen, sailors end up as stragglers?
He's the one seeing this in terms of humiliation, not me. And I believe that athletes understand that there's an element of risk in competition: there is a chance you might win, and a risk that you might lose, even badly. I have the greatest respect for competitors who know they have little to no chance, but try anyway. I have very little respect for people who blame their country's athletes for their perceived national humiliation. (They're there; you're not.) It's not my place to lecture, but I think that if India wants to win, it must not be afraid to lose.

On another note, Alan Lloyd sent me an e-mail a couple of days ago that took issue with one of my arguments:
Great site, and I understand its intent, however I disagree with you when you write "Of course, the worst at the Olympics is still much better than the rest of us could ever hope to do." Anyone can finish last, even me. I want to know how I can get a free trip to Athens and then stroll around the track, what a ride!
No disrespect to Mr. Lloyd, whose e-mail I appreciate receiving, but I meant that the results put in by even the last-place finishers are still better than most of us are capable, not the placing. Yes, anyone could come in last -- assuming they could finish -- but I don't think we could put up the same marks, by and large.

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Thursday, August 26, 2004

Results for Thursday, August 26

Athletics: Men's long jump: Gregor Cankar of Slovenia had the shortest best jump in the qualifyings at 7.32 metres; the winner's final jump was 8.59 metres. One athlete received no mark. Men's 400-metre hurdles: Ibrahim Tondi of Niger had the slowest heat time of 52.62 seconds; the winner's final time was 47.63 seconds. One athlete was disqualified for running outside his lane. Men's 200 metre: Russel Roman of Palau narrowly edged out a Japanese runner for the slowest heat time -- 24.59 seconds. The winner's final time was 19.79 seconds.

Diving: In the women's 3-metre springboard, Diamantina Georgatou -- who we last saw finishing last in a synchronized diving event (results) -- finished 33rd with a score of 157.56. The leader in the prelims -- who eventually finished 3rd -- had a score of 347.04.

Football: In women's football ("soccer"), Greece was ranked last at the end of the tournament.

Hockey -- or "field hockey" as we say in Canada (never say "ice hockey"): Spain was 0-4 in the prelims and lost the 9-10 classification, finishing 10th. Reader George Brink makes the call: "Spain have just come last in the Women's Olympic Hockey competition losing 4-3 to South Africa by a Golden Goal. This must be the cruelest way to come last having scored the first goal then having fought back from a 3-1 deficit to draw 3-3 at full time only to have the 9th position snatched away from them when South Africa scored the first goal in Extra Time."

Modern Pentathlon: In men's upper-class twit of the year modern pentathlon, Marcin Horbacz of Poland finished 32nd with 4,388 points. He was 4:33 behind the winner, who had 5,480 points. Marcin started relatively strongly, placing 7th and 6th in the shooting and fencing portions, respectively (he's a better shot than the eventual medallists, for example), but a DNF in the riding component put him out of the running. (The results seem to indicate a horse substitution?)

Sailing: Some of you have been wondering, "Where's India?" Wonder no more. After 16 races, Indian sailors Malav Shroff and Sumeet Patel finished 19th in the 49er class, with a score of 292 total points, 253 net points. The winners had 91 and 67, respectively. (Lower is obviously better.)

Triathlon: In the men's triathlon, Marc Jenkins of Great Britain finished 45th with a time of 2:05:33.60, nearly 14½ minutes behind the winner and about a minute and a half behind finisher number 44. There were four DNFs.

Water Polo: Kazakhstan lost to Canada 4-10 in the women's 7th/8th classification game to finish 8th in women's water polo; they were 0-3 in the preliminary round. (Remember that there were only eight spots in this tournament.)

Standings to date: After achieving its rightful place on the throne after my goof of the standings, Greece solidifies its lead with a seventh and eighth last-place finish, denying Poland a chance at the top.

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Thursday, August 19, 2004

India: Olympic Underachiever

If any country can be said to underperform at the Olympics on a regular basis, it's probably India -- a country of a billion people that usually wins a single bronze medal each time. (So far this year they've got a silver medal, in shooting.) Here's an article that explores India's underwhelming Olympic record.

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