Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Vol. 2 No. 8 Reader comments on Day 3 and a rare picture

Reader Responses to Day 3
"I mentioned that I could not find a picture of Dick Howard, bronze medallist in the 400 Hurdles. Pete Brown immediately sent in this great copy of Howard and Glenn Davis after the race. I'm struck by the similarities in their body structures. I did find one picture on a photo site of Howard, Davis and Cliff Cushman on the podium, but could not download it. Ernie Cunliffe has added some more of his great insights to the Olympics. There is repeated reference to a number of Americans having some form of runny tummy during the Games. In the book Rome 1960, there is an explanation. Apparently many of the US athletes were requesting that ice be served with their drinks in the Olympic Village. This custom of ice in soft drinks is very American, not a European custom. The Italian cooks in the Village responded by bringing in blocks of ice to the kitchen, placing them directly on the floor and chipping off pieces for the Yanks. More than likely a lot of the ice that went into the drinks, came off the floor in the process, thus contributing to the rash of illnesses." George Brose

"Howard signed this photo to me after the OG. It was obviously taken right after the final. Howard was totally exhausted and in his defense, I’ll point out it is not an easy race to run from lane 1." Pete Brown

And a second photo from Pete Brown showing all three American finishers, Davis, Cushman and Howard

Notes from Ernie Cunliffe

(George. The picture that asks semi finals ? is not the semi. It is heat 4 of the 2nd round. Why? Because there are 7 runners in the race and the semis only had 6 in each. Moens won in 1:48.5; Snell 1:48.6; Jorg Balke 1:48.8 qualified; 4th was Rodolf Klabon 1:50.2; 5th Tom Farrell (GB) 1:50.7; 6th Ergas Leps 1:52.0 and the tall dark hair runner from Turkey was last in 1:52.5, Ekrem Kocak)

3rd Day. My birthday buddy Matuschewski never got going and my 1959 European buddy Moens had the race won, looked the wrong way to his right and then desperately tried to figure out who was passing him on the inside. I warmed down on the practice track with Roger and we talked briefly because he was so disappointed and knew it was his last chance for gold.

Security at the Games was virtually non existant. I merely wore my USA sweats and got in the stadium and watched the 5,000 and marveled at the bold move by Halberg who was thoroughly spent after the race after his brave move when he surged. The 800 final was probably the lst big final I had seen from the stands and watching Waegli run my race tactics demonstrated that the kickers will usually win every time as he faded to 5th, but with an excellent time of 1:48.1 We would tangle in a race after the Games but at 1500 meters rather than 800.

My roommates were Max Truex and Cliff Cushman. Cliff had his medal, I was a failure, and Max had the 10.000 coming up. Since I was done, I borrowed Max's USA sweats and his 5' 5" were a little short for my fiancee Lois to wear since she was just under 5' 8". No problems. I
went outside the Olympic Village, handed her Max's sweats and she put them on and we both walked into the Village. We ate at the cafeteria which no doubt was the cause of Cliff and my tourista and perhaps Siebert's too, but Lois escaped any illness from the food.

I did have the fortune of seeing Cassius Clay fight in one of the early boxing rounds which he won handily. His speed both with the gloves and his footwork were magnificent as he cruised through to the gold in the light heavyweight category. After he won, he was seen a little worse for wear in the O Village after alot of celebrating, but I missed that.

Outside the O Village I had a chance to see the opera Aida in the outdoor Baths of Caracalla complete with an elephant in the Grand March. This elephant was by far the biggest thing I had ever seen in an opera until of course later when I saw Luciano Pavarotti on stage.

I'll wind up my Olympic thoughts once Roy gets to the 10,000 and Rafer's decathlon where Max, Cliff and I easily got out on the track and took up residence in the pole vault pit.

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