Friday, July 18, 2008

Another Full Set

How many runners have claimed a WOC medal in all four disciplines, counting Short and Middle as equivalent for these purposes? Remember Sprint only started in 2001 so many people never had a chance.

A quick think about it brings up the obvious candidate: Simone Niggli. After that I was struggling, but some analysis showed that Minna Kauppi has also got one of each. And then at yesterday's Middle race a third person joined the elite group when Vroni Koenig-Salmi claimed silver and completed a full set of Sprint, Middle, Long and Relay medals. The photo shows her on the way to Gold in the Sprint in 2001 in Finland.It also shows what may be the least attractive control site in WOC history: Tampere Greyhound Stadium toilet block, NW corner.

So who else could join this group in the near future. Looking just at runners at the 2008 WOC with three types of medal already we find people missing teh following types of medal:
  • Sprint: Heli Jukkola, Marianne Andersen
  • Middle: Andrey Khramov, Emil Wingstedt , Matthias Merz
  • Relay: Yuri Omelchenko
  • Long: Jamie Stevenson, Pasi Ikonen, Thierry Gueorgiou
The Sprint and Middle are over, so those five have missed out. I can't see the Ukraine sneaking a relay medal so it surely won't be Yuri. Pasi and Thierry aren't running the Long so it won't be them. But it just could be Jamie. One extra thing to cheer him on for on Saturday.

(Just for completeness, Valentin Novikov would have needed a Long and Sprint medal.)

And one final statistical excitement from yesterday. The men's race was only the third race in WOC history that Norway, Finland and Sweden all failed to win a medal. Unfortunately for me this was the first time it had happened when Great Britain didn't claim the associated gold medal.

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