Welcome! › Forums › Running Forum › It’s Time to Make the Olympic Marathon More Competitive. Here’s How › Re: Re: It’s Time to Make the Olympic Marathon More Competitive. Here’s How
Rita, the Olympic creed is an amazing statement and one that I would love to see the Olympics live up to. However, not to burst your idealistic bubble but I think you know as well as anyone that's not how the current Olympics works. Qualifying times, political division of the field via nation-based participation limits, financial (sponsorship primarily) and publicity incentives for winning or placing high. I could go on. The Olympics may still for many be about that wonderful creed but those aren't the people who we see. We see the winners, the medalists, those narrowly out of the medals. These are the people who are celebrated, whether it's right or wrong.
In our current cultural climate, whether or not the organizers of the Olympics still believe in that creed, whether or not the athletes participating believe in that creed doesn't really matter. The people sitting on their couches at home watching the Olympics and essentially footing the bill for the Olympics by providing eyeballs that advertisers want to pay to reach want to see winners. More than that, they want to see winners who are wearing their home country's name across their chests. Joe Sixpack sees, at most, two marathons every four years. Is he even going to watch those if the entire top 20 in the race is made up of Kenyans and Ethiopians?