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Ron Judd's Olympics Insider

Ron Judd, an Olympics junkie and Seattle Times columnist who has covered Olympic sports since 1997, will use this space to serve up news and opinion on the Summer and Winter Games -- also inviting you to chime in on Planet Earth's biggest get-together.

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August 16, 2008 7:03 PM

Phelps wins 8th, silvers for Hoelzer, Jendrick; Sunday TV preview

Posted by Ron Judd

Saturday wrap:

With swimming wrapping up, the focus shifts to track and field, which presents interesting logistical challenges, to say the least, for distant viewers. Today's 100-meter men's final, discussed below, is a good example.

Several readers have asked if there's a schedule detailing exactly what time a certain event -- the men's 1,500, a certain U.S. women's soccer game, etc., will be on one of the many NBC networks. The short answer is no, not in a down-to-the-minute way for people seeking to record the game or event. The closest we've come, for NBC broadcasts, is this schedule.
(Note that you might have to register on the site to get it to display Disadvantaged Time Zone times, but when you do that, it also gives you local online Games stories and stats from KING-TV.)

The schedule (there's one on the bottom of the page for online streaming) at least breaks the volumnous network offerings into two-hour chunks, and uses local times.

For example, here's how it breaks down Sunday's NBC lineup:

10:00a - 12:00p
The U.S. women's basketball team plays New Zealand in a preliminary-round game (LIVE ET/CT). American women have won the past three gold medals in this event. New Zealand has made two Olympic appearances, finishing 11th in 2000 and eighth in 2004.

12:00p - 2:00p
The women's track cycling individual pursuit final. Four years ago, Beijing wasn't on Sara Hammer's radar. The pedaling prodigy who first raced competitively at age 3 had left the sport, burnt out and conflicted. But the California native, inspired after watching the Athens Games, returned to cycling and has become an Olympic medal contender. Also, coverage from rowing, equestrian, and table tennis.
Medal Event

2:00p - 5:00p
Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele is the best in the world in the men's 10,000m. In Beijing, the three-time world champion seeks his second straight Olympic gold. Other coverage likely includes rowing "eight" finals and U.S. women's volleyball vs. Poland.
Medal Event

5:00p - 6:00p
Americans Nicole Branagh and Elaine Youngs play China in a women's beach volleyball quarterfinal match.

7:30p - 12:30a (8/18
The first night of gymnastics individual event finals, including men's floor and pommel horse; the women perform floor and vault routines. Also, track and field finals

Happy hunting.

Next Up -- first up? last up? -- track and field:

20:40: There's at least one world record involved in the men's 100 meters -- for longest delay of a worldwide major sporting event. East Coast viewers at this moment are watching the men go to the blocks for the race, which began just after 7:30 a.m. Seattle time. That's a 13-hour delay from start time. By the time NBC viewers in the Disadvantaged Time Zone see the race, it'll be a 16-hour and 10 minute delay. That breaks the old, 15-hour delay record for the opening ceremony broadcast.

If you don't already know: Usain Bolt of Jamaica wins in world record time, 9.69 seconds. And that's after pulling up to start celebrating with 20 meters still to go. Nobody on the track was even close. In second was Richard Thompson of Trinidad & Tobago; Walter Dix of the U.S. takes the bronze. Tyson Gay failed to make the final.

BTW: Can we declare a moratorium now on TV "Mom shots?
First up: Swimming

Men's 400 medley relay
Aaron Piersol established a small lead for the U.S. Breaststroker Brendan Hansen gives it up to Japan on the second leg. Phelps, swimming the fly, reclaims a narrow lead over Japan and Australia. And then Jason Lezak does it again, holding off all comers to claim the gold in a WR time of 3:29.34. Phelps' swim of 50.15, fittingly, is the turning point in the race. Australia takes the silver at 3:30.04 , Japan the bronze at 3:31.18.

Women's 400 medley relay
Australia blows away its own world record, swimming 3:52.69 to take the gold. The U.S. is second at 3:53.30. China is third at 3:56.11. It's Natalie Coughlin's sixth medal in Beijing -- a first for a U.S. woman. It also brings silver medals to King Aquatic swimmers Megan Jendrick and Margaret Hoelzer, who leaves Beijing with three medals.

Men's 1500 meter freestyle
Ous Melluli of Tunisia wins the long one at 14:40.84; Grant Hackett of Australia is second at 14:41.53; Ryan Cochrane of CANADA takes the bronze at 14:42.69. Larsen Jensen of the U.S. is fifth at 14:48.16.

Women's 50 freestyle
Britta Steffen of Germany, wins at 24.06, an Olympic record. Dara Torres is second at 24.07; Cate Campbell of Australia is third at 24.17. Libby Trickett of Australia is fourth at 24.25.

Sorry we're slow getting rolling tonight.

Some guys from NBC showed up at the front door, dark glasses, etc., wanted to talk about this blog's "attitude problem."

We told them to come back in three hours.

Actually, had to write Sunday's newspaper column, which will be a highlight reel of Week One of the Games. Not to be missed. Likely to be laminated. Joe Bob says check it out.

On tap tonight: The big Michael Phelps race for No. 8. Dara Torres in the 100. Full slate of track and field, including the men's 100 meters, which occurred approximately last Tuesday in Beijing.

A special shout out tonight to all our readers in Canada, where, after that first GOLD in women's wrestling yesterday, the medals came in a virtual torrent. Well, at least a steady trickle. More on this to come, as well.

Get your fans all pointed toward the couch (Dad, keep pushing the nurse button), and, as they say in ice dancing, get ready to rhumba...

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Posted by sporty

10:34 PM, Aug 16, 2008

Boy, the genuine pride and joy on Ryan Cochrane's face was sweet. Gee, now that Michael is done can't ANYONE do a feature on Natalie Coughlin? SIX medals in Bejing? You go girl ! That was quite the feat but seems no one is noticing.

Hopefully I won't have to see Michael's mom's face many shots does NBC need of her?

I thought it was great when CBC quickly mentioned Tyson Gay's inabilitiy to qualify for the 100m finals and said "that's such old news now...everyone has moved on" but meanwhile, on NBC, I'm sure they'll be rehashing that episode in another one of their worthless chats in the studio.

BTW I LOVE your blog's attitude problem. At least you don't lie, like the Chinese government in issuing passports declaring their citizens to be 2-3 years older than they really are. And the IOC really took the passports at face value? Who's the dummy here?

Can't wait to read your next installment.

Posted by zack

11:16 PM, Aug 16, 2008

Hey Ron, just started reading your blog yesterday. Great stuff. And you thought NBC took a long time to catch up with the here and now.

I had no idea both CBC and NBC were showing the 100m final tonight. I set my Tivo to catch it while I slept last night and watched it first thing this morning. The amount of ad revenue NBC is losing on the West Coast to the CBC and the fact that they don't seem to care blows my mind. Oh well, the Canadian coverage is more timely, more insightful, and more interesting than what I've seen from NBC anyways. Just wish I could get them in HD on Comcast.

Posted by ploscaru

11:25 PM, Aug 16, 2008

Great blog, Ron! Thanks for looking out for us in the DTZ. BTW, can Andrea Kremer please be sent to cover - from the floor, looking up - the women's powerlifting contest? The exchange with the US women's silver medal relay team was pathetic and actually stupid. My favorite part: Andrea gushes to Dara Torres about how Dara's daughter won't remember this event, so what will she tell her? I would have paid Dara's way to London if she had said: "Ummm, just watch the tape, it pretty much shows you what happens. And just mute the dumb lady parts."

Posted by Swim Mom

8:10 AM, Aug 17, 2008

Any word on what Megan Jendrick will do now? I agree that not enough spotlight was placed on Natalie Coughlin. Katie Hoff looked to be the lead female swimmer coming in to the Olympics but Natalie did better. Anyone know what happened to Katie? Was she sick, nervous....? Hope to see Nathan Adrian rise next time, he seems on track.

Posted by Marko

10:55 AM, Aug 17, 2008

I sympathize with those of you stuck with NBC. I'm living in Armenia working for the federal government, so I have access to NBC's coverage via Armed Forces television. But I can also see the Olympics on Eurosport, which covers as many sports as it can live, with relatively few commercials and no Bob Costas (or equivalent), and no gimmicks. So I noted the 13-hour delay between the mens' 100 meters and its East Coast broadcast. Absurd.

Remember a few weeks ago the mini-contretemps that ensued when the Chinese government announced that it wouldn't allow live broadcasts from Tianenmann Square? Why would NBC care? Based on what they've been doing here, it would seem that NBC would delay by 13 hours (16 to the West Coast) footage of tanks rolling in to crush another political demonstration. Granted, a 100-meter race or Michael Phelps isn't remotely as consequential or newsworthy, but major sports events should be live, or they're not major.

BTW, Eurosport's coverage is available by streaming on its website; probably not if you have a US IP address, but perhaps worth a look.

Recent entries

Aug 17, 08 - 09:06 AM
Gold for U-Dub's Whipple, Cummins in U.S. women's eight

Aug 17, 08 - 08:56 AM
Disastrous U.S. track team start: Lagat fails to qualify

Aug 17, 08 - 08:51 AM
Megan Jendrick: No retirement gifts, please

Aug 16, 08 - 07:03 PM
Phelps wins 8th, silvers for Hoelzer, Jendrick; Sunday TV preview

Aug 16, 08 - 12:43 PM
That Phantastic Phelps Phinish, Phrame by Phrame







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Blogroll and links The official International Olympic Committtee site, with news releases, a searchable Olympic medals database and other archival information. Olympic news site from one of the Games' primary sponsors.
NBC Olympics columnist Alan Abrahamson's column/blog
Chicago Tribune Olympic sports writer Philip Hersh's blog U.S. Olympic Committee's athlete web site. Ed and Sheila Hula's Olympic News Service (subscription). News service with audio, video and text coverage of Olympic sports, during and between Olympics. Free, but charges for live video feed subscriptions. Beijing Organizing Committee Web site. Vancouver Organizing Committee's 2010 Winter Games site. London 2012 Summer Games site. Sochi, Russia's 2014 Winter Games site. Candidate city Chicago's summer 2016 bid committee site.
Olympic swimmer Tara Kirk's highly entertaining WCSN blog
Bellevue Olympian Scott Macartney's WCSN alpine ski-racing blog
Other WCSN Olympic athlete blogs.


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