The oldest track & field blog on the internet

Saturday, November 03, 2007


After this morning's Olympic Trials webcast debacle, I shut down the computer and went out for a run. I wanted to avoid any spoilers before watching NBC's half-hour race recap. I planned to write up a nasty letter and send it to USATF, the USOC, NBC Sports, and their sponsors.

At 2:00 I turned on the TV and was shocked by the news: Ryan Shay, one of the favorites to make the team, collapsed 5 1/2 miles into the race and died almost immediately.

The news may have caused Let's Run's message board to partially crash. T&FN has a more easily read discussion. News stories: AP, USA Today, NBC, USATF, Runner's World, ESPN, Chicago Tribune, USA Today, New York Times, Let's Run discussion, and SI's always-excellent Tim Layden.

Details are still sketchy. He dropped back early, then stopped and attempted to sit down but fell face-first into the pavement. CPR and emergency transportation were given immediately but Shay was pronounced dead on arrival at Lenox Hill Hospital at 8:46 a.m. No word yet on any cause of death; an autopsy is scheduled for tommorrow.

A moment of silence was held prior to the beginning of today's Notre Dame football game, as Shay was a 2002 graduate of that university. He leaves behind newlywed wife Alicia (nee Craig). Parents Joe and Susan were not in attendance as two runners of theirs at Central Lakes (MI) HS were competing at the Michigan championships this morning.

My anger at NBC Sports for doing such a piss-poor job of broadcasting the most important and popular American road race in any four-year period has been put into perspective and muted. In respect, I will put it off for a day.

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