Sunday, January 8, 2017

V 7 N. 2 January, 1967

We start a new year of TF&N rehashes, and Roy Mason  our multi-talented co-founder of Once Upon a Time in the Vest asks the important questions of those heroes of the past.  Welcome again to a new , invigorated and armchair reclining issue.


JANUARY 1967

    Whether you were reading this issue when it had just arrived or 50 years later, its home would be the bathroom. The first 56 pages are devoted to awards, ratings and lists; world, U.S., college, junior college and high school. Your answer to the pounding on the door is “I'm okay. Be out in a little bit.”

    One wonders where those guys are now or whether they are now. What is the life story of Peter Chen (American University All American) who vaulted 16-0 to finish in a five way tie for 41st on the world list? Every now and then does he remember that exact instance when he knew he had cleared? Do his table mates at the retirement home know that he once jumped sixteen feet?

    On May 21 in Provo, Utah Mike Douglas ran the intermediates in 50.8. That earned him a four way tie for 21st spot on the world list. What have you done for me lately, Mike? Did you teach and coach? Were you a stock broker, a mechanic, a pilot? Did you own a bar, run a karate school, play the violin, raise a family, adopt foreign orphans?

    Bill Toomey set the world decathlon record of 8234 points. Russ Hodge was second at 8230 – yes, 4 points behind. They trained together and were roommates. There must have been a bond. They are both still alive. Do they communicate? Have they been lifelong buddies? Did they just exchange Christmas cards?

    A quick run through of the awards before we report on what few meets there are. Jim Ryun was selected as the World Track Athlete of 1966. His 86 points gave him a cushion over Tommie Smith's 69. Randy Matson was third with 25. Matson was the field athlete of the year. The European AOY was javelin thrower Janis Lusis of the USSR. Ralph Boston won the US Open (non-collegiate) award with Tommie Smith getting the US Collegiate title. If you are wondering how Ryun could top Smith in the world voting but finish behind him in the collegiate standings, the unexplained explanation must be that Smith competed on the varsity level which Ryun couldn't because he was confined to frosh competition. And, yes, Ryun was freshman AOY. Lee Evans was the JC winner. Tim Danielson won the high school award. Triple jumper Art Walker was Indoor AOY. The top performance was Ryun's 3:51.3.

    The individual event rankings were more interesting. Winners were: 100: Charlie Greene, 200: Tommie Smth, 400: Lee Evans, 800 and 1500/mile: Ryun, 3 miles/5000: Kipchoge Keino of Kenya, 6 miles/10,000: Naftali Temu of Kenya, Steeplechase: Viktor Kudinsky of the USSR, 110 hurdles: Willie Davenport, 400 hurdles: Roberto Frinolli of Italy, 



Ni Chih Chin

High Jump: Ni Chih-Chin of China (He is known for breaking the world record with 2.29 m on 8 November 1970 in Changsha, but because PR China was not a member of the International Association of Athletics Federations at the time, his record was never ratified.), Long Jump: Ralph Boston, Pole Vault: John Pennel, Triple Jump: Hans-Jurgen Ruckborn of East Germany (although Art Walker was undefeated and had the longest jump of the year), Shot: Randy Matson, Discus: Al Oerter, Hammer: Romuald Klim of the USSR, Javelin: Janis Lusis and Decathlon: Bill Toomey.
                                     Romuald Klim    died 2011


    The US indoor season starts on Dec. 22 in Mobile, Alabama where Bob Seagren has both a literal and figurative up and down performance. To the positive, he vaults 17-4, the best ever in indoor competition. On the other side of the coin, it doesn't count, as he had already been eliminated with three failures on the opening height of 15-0 and was just filling out his day.

    A week later in Saskatoon, Canada, Seagren increases his own indoor WR with a clearance of 17-1. Otis Burrell edges a come-backing John Thomas by an inch in the high jump with a 7-1 effort.

Unless the discus has become an indoor event, we assume the Orange Bowl meet in Miami is held outdoors, as John Morton of Florida throws that implement 183-2.

    The first really big news comes on January 7 in the All American Games held in San Francisco's venerable Cow Palace. For once the focus is on the field events. Neil Steinhauer hands Randy Matson his first loss in over a year and, in so doing, crushes Gary Gubner's indoor record of 64-11¾ by nearly a foot and a half with a throw of 66-6¾. Matson's 64-4½ leaves him a well beaten second. The gauntlet has been thrown.
John Rambo Long Beach St.

    High jumper John Rambo missed the outdoor season last year because of an injury, so it is surprising to see him tie John Thomas' US indoor record of 7-3. Otis Burrell keeps the outcome in doubt, finishing at 7-2.

    Apparently the athletes liked the Bay Area so much that they return the next week for the Athens Invitational held in the Oakland Arena on January 15. The track and runways are covered with Fastrac, the new super surface guaranteed to produce faster times. The comparison of times made by the same athletes in the Cow Palace meet doesn't verify this claim.

    Fastrac, however, is responsible for the appearance of US triple jump record holder Art Walker. He is here because he jumped 54-9 off the surface last indoor season and is eager for another crack at it. Unfortunately this pit ends at 56 feet. Walker has to nearly abort his first effort, putting his feet down at 54-1 so that he doesn't hit the board at the end of the pit. Rather than risk injury, he calls it an evening after that single jump.

    Ralph Boston wins the long jump at 26-3. No surprise there, but the most significant mark of the competition is the second-place 25-3½ national high school record by Jerry Proctor of Muir High in Pasadena. The kid may have a future. Stay tuned.

In an L.A. Times article Feb. 4, 1998 Aara Najarian wrote about Proctor


It is somewhat ironic that Proctor cites Boston's Olympic performances as his impetus to become a long jumper.
"I saw him on TV, so I wanted to long jump. But I really didn't know who he was or much about him," said Proctor, who has worked for L.A. County for nearly 25 years, reviewing Medi-Cal cases. "There weren't that many people doing it. It seemed like a good event."
It became a great event for Proctor, who became something of a celebrity in Pasadena.
After the meet, Boston said Proctor was "destined for a fantastic future."
It looked that way.
"We were setting records, not breaking them," said Proctor, 48, emphasizing a subtle difference in attitude. "It was a different time. There was no money in it. We just wanted to be the best. We wanted to see how far a man can go. Look at all the standards that came out of that time: Bob Beamon, Jim Ryun, Tommy Smith, Lee Evans. . . . It was a great time."
To some it seemed as if he disappeared from the track scene shortly after high school.
It wasn't that simple.
Proctor went on to the University of Redlands, where he jumped 26-11 3/4, still a school record.
In the Olympic trials in 1968, he injured his hamstring and finished fifth in a competition for three berths.
Despite the Olympic trials tribulations, Proctor was only 18 and his future remained bright.
But during his sophomore year of college, his life changed irrevocably.
"My career came to a halt after my mother died, tragically, in 1969," Proctor said.
Redlands offered to let him quit the track team and keep him on scholarship, but that wasn't a solution for him. Proctor stayed on the team because it was something that was right-side up when everything else seemed upside down.

"I gave her a going-away present by winning the NCAAs," he said. "I jumped 26-11. But that was it. I lost my motivation."
Even devoid of passion, Proctor stayed competitive until he injured his hamstring again at the 1972 Olympic trials and did not make the team.
These days he finds inspiration in his family.
His son, Jerry Jr., was the second draft choice of baseball's expansion Arizona Diamondbacks last spring.
His daughter, Christina, will be following his footsteps around the L.A. Invitational track this weekend.
Although Christina, a junior at Muir, is the Pacific League champion in the low and high hurdles, she is in only her second year of track and field and knows very little of her father's legacy. He didn't want to burden his kids with expectations and keeps his trophies packed away.
It is somewhat ironic that Proctor cites Boston's Olympic performances as his impetus to become a long jumper.
"I saw him on TV, so I wanted to long jump. But I really didn't know who he was or much about him," said Proctor, who has worked for L.A. County for nearly 25 years, reviewing Medi-Cal cases. "There weren't that many people doing it. It seemed like a good event."
It became a great event for Proctor, who became something of a celebrity in Pasadena.
After the meet, Boston said Proctor was "destined for a fantastic future."
It looked that way.
"We were setting records, not breaking them," said Proctor, 48, emphasizing a subtle difference in attitude. "It was a different time. There was no money in it. We just wanted to be the best. We wanted to see how far a man can go. Look at all the standards that came out of that time: Bob Beamon, Jim Ryun, Tommy Smith, Lee Evans. . . . It was a great time."
To some it seemed as if he disappeared from the track scene shortly after high school.
It wasn't that simple.
Proctor went on to the University of Redlands, where he jumped 26-11 3/4, still a school record.
In the Olympic trials in 1968, he injured his hamstring and finished fifth in a competition for three berths.
Despite the Olympic trials tribulations, Proctor was only 18 and his future remained bright.
But during his sophomore year of college, his life changed irrevocably.
"My career came to a halt after my mother died, tragically, in 1969," Proctor said.
Redlands offered to let him quit the track team and keep him on scholarship, but that wasn't a solution for him. Proctor stayed on the team because it was something that was right-side up when everything else seemed upside down.

    The following week finds us still in California, specifically at the Los Angeles Invitational where Jim Ryun makes his 1967 indoor debut with a 4:02.6 win over Tom Von Ruden and Dyrol Burleson. Ralph Boston once again wins the long jump, this time at 26-3¾, but gets no love from the sportswriters who vote that Proctor kid the athlete of the meet for breaking his week old high school record on four of his six jumps and finishing second at 25-10½.

    Once again Bob Seagren surpasses the world pole vault record but gets no credit for doing so. This time Seagren clears 17-2, but as he lands in the pit, so does his pole, resulting in a miss. After the meet he speaks vociferously about outlawing that rule.

    Dave Maggard puts the shot 62-11½ to edge Jon Cole by nearly a foot.

Dave Maggard career  


Maggard would go on to a career as a college AD at Cal, Miami (FL), and Houston.  See link above  for more.

 Jim Grelle outkicks Gerry Lindgren and George Young to win the two mile in 8:45.0. Charlie Greene takes the 60 in 6.0.

    In a race we wish had been saved on YouTube, Richmond Flowers wins the 60 hurdles in 7.1 over European champ Eddie Ottoz who is attired in “bikini-like” shorts. On second thought, maybe that is a visual image we are better off without.


Eddie Ottoz then and now

Ottoz has been very influential in Italian track and field over the years and participated as a journalist and training specialist for Italian teams


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