Anthony Ervin Again – How Old is Old?

Anthony Ervin won the men’s 50 metre freestyle tonite 16 years after he won the same race at the Sydney 2000 Olympics. Anthony Ervin is 35-years-old, which is Methuselah-like for an Olympic swimmer. How does this compare to previous elderly Olympic swimmers, especially successful ones?

  • Ervin became the 7th oldest Olympic swimming medalist tonite, at 35-079 (years-days), and the 6th oldest man
  • He became the 4th oldest USA Olympic swimming medalist, after Dara Torres (41-125 in 2008), Jason Lezak (36-260 in 2012), and Edgar Adams (36-151 in 1904).
  • Ervin became the oldest Olympic swimming gold medalist, surpassing Dara Torres from 2000, when she was 33-162 and 33-155 when she won relay gold medals; and among men, Jason Lezak, who was 32-279 and 32-273 in 2008, also winning in relays.
  • He is the 4th oldest individual swimming medalist, after Torres from 2008 (50 free), William Robinson (GBR-1908, 200 breaststroke; 38-026), and Edgar Adams (1904 plunge  for distance; 36-151).
  • Ervin is easily the oldest individual swimming gold medalist ever, surpassing Inge de Bruijn (NED-2004, 30-363) among all swimmers, and among the men, going way back to Duke Kahanamoku (USA-1920, 30-009), although Michael Phelps had  bettered that earlier in Rio.

Michelle Carter and Her Dad, Michael

Michelle Carter won the women’s shot put gold medal tonite, 32 years after her father, Michael Carter, won a silver medal in the men’s shot put at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. How rare is this. Let’s look at fathers and daughter in the Olympics:

  • 230 father-daughters (F-D) have competed at the Olympics.
  • 25 F-D have both won medals
  • 3 F-D have both won gold medals – Reiner and Ingrid Klimke (FRG/GER-EQU); Carsten and Natascha Keller (FRK/GER-HOK); and Yoshekatsu and Saori Yoshida (JPN-WRE).
  • 15 @TeamUSA F-D have competed at the Olympics – Champ Hough and Lauren Hough (EQU/EQU); Jim Ochowicz and Elli Ochowicz (CYC/SSK); Thomas Scott and Lida Howell (ARC/ARC); Wink Davenport and Lindsay Davenport (VOL/TEN); Robert Zagunis and Mariel Zagunis (ROW/FEN); John Foster and Jean Foster (SHO/SHO); Lones Wigger and Deena Wigger (SHO/SHO); Butch May and Misty May-Treanor (VOL/BVO); Owen Churchill and Antonia Churchill (SAI/SAI); Bill Horton, Sr. and Joyce Horton (SAI/SAI); Mike Carter and Michelle Carter (ATH/ATH); Rafer Johnson and Jenny Johnson-Jordan (ATH/BVO); Jack Nagel and Judy Nagel (ASK/ASK); Mike Devecka and Kirstin Holum (NCO/SSK); and Stan Dunklee and Susan Dunklee (CCS/BIA).
  • 0 @TeamUSA F-D had both previously won medals (or gold medals) – the Carters are the first USA father-daughters to accomplish this.
  • 27 F-D have both competed in athletics
  • 1 @TeamUSA F-D have both competed in athletics – Michael and Michelle Carter – they were the first @TeamUSA F-D to do this in athletics
  • 4 F-D in athletics have both won medals – Fritz and Brunhilde Hendrix (GER – 1932/1960); Lennox Miller (JAM-1968/72) and Inger Miller (USA-1996); Viktor Bryzhin (URS-1988) and Yelzaveta Bryzhina (UKR-2012); and now Michael and Michelle Carter.

Anthony Ervin’s 16 Years between Gold Medals

Anthony Ervin won a gold medal tonite in the 50 metre freestyle, 16 years after he had won an individual gold medal in the same event at Sydney in 2000. This 16-year gap between gold medals, or medals, is unusual in Olympic history but this has occurred before. Here is where this unusual Phoenix-like gold medal puts Ervin in Olympic perspective, first looking only at swimmers:

  • Among swimmers, Ervin ties Dara Torres with her 16-years between gold medals in 1984 and 2000
  • In swimming, 16 years between individual medals ties by the mark set by Frank Beaurepaire (AUS, 1908-24)
  • His mark of 16 years between individual swimming golds betters the mark held by Michael Phelps, from 2004-16, and Phelps didn’t hold that too long, did he?

Now in all sports, the mark is not that unusual for years between 1st and last medal but the gap of 16 years is. This is where it puts Ervin on various Olympic lists, including all sports.

  • His 16-year gap between medals ties the USA mark held by Jonathan McKee in sailing (1984/2000), Miguel de Capriles in fencing (1932/1948), and Earl Thomson in equestrian (1932/1948)
  • His 16-year gap between gold medals ties the USA mark held by Earl Thomson in equestrian (1932/1948).
  • His 16-year gap between gold medals is 4th all-time, all nations, behind Hubert Van Innis (BEL-ARC, 1900/1920), Lars Jørgen Madsen (DEN-SHO, 1900/1920), and Manlio Di Rosa (ITA-FEN, 1936/1956), all with 20.
  • His 16-year gap between individual medals is 4th all-time, all nations, behind Hubert Van Innis (BEL-ARC, 1900/1920), Hiroshi Yamamoto (JPN-ARC, 1984/2004), and Nino Salukvadze (GEO/URS-SHO, 1988/2008).
  • His 16-year gap between individual gold medals is 2nd all-time, all nations, behind Hubert Van Innis (BEL-ARC, 1900/1920). The previous USA best was 8 years held by 10 Olympians.

3-Way Medal Ties


How rare is that 3-way tie for silver medals in the men’s 100 fly tonite? Not all that rare. There have been 21 previous cases at the Olympics where there have been 3 (or more) tied for a medal. It has happened twice for gold medals, in the men’s pommel horse in 1948 and 1988; 8 previous times for silver medals – 5 at the Summer Olympics and 3 at the Winter; and 11 times for bronze medals, most recently at the 2012 men’s athletics high jump, and including once at the Winter Games. There was one 4-way tie, in the 1984 men’s gymnastics horse vault. Here are all the examples of this.

Year Season Sport Class Event G S B TM
1948 Summer Gymnastics Men Pommelled Horse 3 0 0 3
1988 Summer Gymnastics Men Pommelled Horse 3 0 0 3
1906 Summer Athletics Men Standing High Jump 1 3 0 4
1908 Summer Athletics Men High Jump 1 3 0 4
1956 Summer Gymnastics Men Floor Exercise 1 3 0 4
1964 Summer Gymnastics Men Individual All-Around 1 3 0 4
1984 Summer Gymnastics Men Horse Vault 1 4 0 5
2016 Summer Swimming Men 100 butterfly 1 3 0 4
1906 Summer Weightlifting Men Unlimited Two Hands 1 1 3 5
1908 Summer Athletics Men Pole Vault 2 0 3 5
1912 Summer Athletics Men Pole Vault 1 2 3 6
1948 Summer Gymnastics Men Horse Vault 1 1 3 5
1980 Summer Gymnastics Women Uneven Bars 1 1 3 5
1992 Summer Athletics Men High Jump 1 1 3 5
1992 Summer Gymnastics Men Parallel Bars 1 1 3 5
1992 Summer Gymnastics Women Floor Exercise 1 1 3 5
1996 Summer Gymnastics Men Horizontal Bar 1 1 3 5
2012 Summer Athletics Men High Jump 1 1 3 5
1948 Winter Speedskating Men 500 metres 1 3 0 4
1964 Winter Speedskating Men 500 metres 1 3 0 4
1968 Winter Speedskating Women 500 metres 1 3 0 4
1928 Winter Speedskating Men 500 metres 2 0 3 5

The Katie Ledecky Stat Line

Here is what Katie Ledecky has accomplished with her performance to date in Rio

  • Moves to =3rd among USA female swimmers with 4 Olympic gold medals, trailing Jenny Thompson (8), Amy Van Dyken (6), and tieing Janet Evans, Dara Torres, Missy Franklin, and Dana Vollmer.
  • Moves to =4th among @TeamUSA Olympians, any sport, with 4 Olympic gold medals, trailing Thompson and Van Dyken, as above, and tied with 12 other USA women.
  • Moves to =3rd among @TeamUSA Olympians, any sport, with 3 Olympic golds at one Olympics, trailing only swimmers Missy Franklin (2012) and Amy Van Dyken (1996), with 4 each, and tied with 22 other USA women, including 17 swimmers.
  • Moves to =7th among all female Olympians (any sport) with the most individual gold medals with 4. The record is 7 by Věra Čáslavská (TCH) in gymnastics, with Larysa Latynina (URS-GYM) and Lidiya Skoblikova (URS-SSK) having won 6 individual golds.
  • Ties Debbie Meyer (1968) and Janet Evans (1988) among US female swimmers with 3 individual gold medals at a single Olympic Games.
  • Ties Janet Evans (SWI) and Pat McCormick (DIV) among summer female US Olympians (any sport) with 4 individual gold medals. Among @TeamUSA Olympians, Ledecky trails only Bonnie Blair, who won 5 individual gold medals in speed skating at the Winter Olympics.
  • Moves to =2nd among all Olympic female swimmers with 4 individual gold medals, trailing only Hungarian Krisztina Egerszegi, who has won 5. Four females have won 4 individual Olympic swimming golds – Janet Evans (USA), Kristin Otto (GDR), Inge de Bruijn (NED), and Yana Klochkova (UKR).

Kim Rhode – Her 6th Olympic Medal

  • Kim Rhode wins her 6th medal, the most ever by a woman in Olympic shooting. Rhode was previously tied with 5 medals with three other women – Jasna Šekarić (IOA/SCG/SRB/YUG); Marina Dobrancheva-Logvinenko (EUN/RUS/URS); and Mariya Grozdeva (BUL).
  • She equals the Olympic “modern” shooting record with 6 medals, currently held by Chinese male shooter Wang Yifu, who won 6 medals in 1984-2004. “Modern” record is of some importance. Most of the Olympic records for medals won in shooting are still held by shooters from 1908-24, because in those years there were multiple events, including team events. After shooting was excluded from the Olympics in 1928, it returned in 1932 with a drastically reduced program. The overall Olympic shooting record is 11 medals by Carl Osburn (USA), who competed in 1912/1920/1924.
  • Rhode moves to =7th among all female Olympians with 6 individual medals. All of Rhode’s medals have been won in individual events.
  • She ties Jackie Joyner-Kersee (ATH) for the most individual Olympic medals among @TeamUSA Olympians, with 6. Rhode’s 5 individual medals was previously tied with 5 other @TeamUSA Olympians – Shirley Babashoff (SWI), Janet Evans (SWI), Shannon Miller (GYM), Amanda Beard (SWI), and Natalie Coughlin (SWI).
  • She wins a medal in her 6th Olympic Games, which ties the mark for female Olympians (any sport), currently held by Birgit Fischer-Schmidt (GDR/GER-CAN), Anky van Grunsven (NED-EQU), and Elisabeta Oleniuc-Lipă (ROU-ROW).
  • Rhode ties the female record for most years between individual Olympic medals with 20, held by Merlene Ottey (JAM-ATH; 1980-2000) and Nino Salukvadze (URS/GEO-SHO, 1988-2008) (who will compete in Rio). Rhode previously stood =3rd on this list with 7 other women.
  • Rhode becomes the 2nd oldest American female shooting medalist, trailing only Ruby Fox, who was aged 38-353 when she won a silver medal in sport pistol in 1984. Rhode will turn 37 about 3 weeks before the Rio Olympics start.

Canada’s Penny Oleksiak – One Had to be Looney to Know About this Penny

If you had asked me one week ago who or what Penny Oleksiak was, I would have said an inexpensive vegetable oil. But all Olympic fans and swimming fans should know her now. The 16-year-old Canadian swimmer has come from Cathal Dennehy’s virtual “Depths of Hell” to win 4 medals at the Rio Olympics, through Thursday, 11 August. Last night Oleksiak tied Simone Manuel for first place in the women’s 100 freestyle, adding that gold to her silver in the 100 fly and bronzes in the two freestyle relays. Four medals at her first Olympics, and she turned 16 less than 2 months ago.

  • First Canadian to win 4 medals at a single Summer Olympics. Only Cindy Klassen (5) has more at the Winter Olympics.
  • Her gold was Canada’s first in swimming since Mark Tewksbury in 1992 in the 100 backstroke
  • It was only Canada’s second swimming gold by a woman, after Anne Ottenbrite in the 1984 200 breaststroke
  • Oleksiak was the first individual Olympic gold medalist to have been born in the 21st century
  • Oleksiak becomes the 22nd youngest woman to win an individual Olympic gold medal
  • At 16-059, she is Canada’s youngest ever gold medalist, surpassing George Genereaux, who won the 1952 trap shooting gold at 17-148.
  • She is the 6th youngest Canadian Olympic medalist, after 5 other Canadian female swimmers: Robin Corsiglia (13-341; 1976), Shannon Smith (14-296; 1976), Nancy Garapick (14-301; 1976), Allison Higson (15-195; 1988), and Angela Coughlan (16-022; 1968)
  • She is the 3rd youngest Canadian individual Olympic medalist, after Nancy Garapick and Shannon Smith (see above)
  • Oleksiak became the first Canadian to ever win medals on the first two days medals were awarded at an Olympic Games
  • Oleksiak has won a complete set of medals in Rio (gold-silver-bronze), which has only been done by a Canadian at one Games by Anne Ottenbrite in 1984.

And Canada thought they got rid of the penny!

(With thanks to Canadian OC stat mavens Mike Christie, Paula Nichols, and Michele Walker – I stole the last line from Michele)

 

Phelps – More on Michael of Baltimore

The new things Michael Phelps pulled off last nite in Rio:

  • First person to win 4 gold medals at 4 Olympic Games – 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016. Phelps was the only person to have done this 3 times. Nobody else has ever done it more than once.
  • Won the 200 IM for the 4th consecutive time. Only 3 other Olympians have won the same individual event 4 consecutive times – Paul Elvstrøm (DEN-SAI) in one-person dinghy sailing from 1948-60; Al Oerter (USA-ATH) in athletics discus throw from 1956-60; and Carl Lewis (USA-ATH) in athletics long jump from 1984-96). If you include the 1906 Olympics, this list also includes Ray Ewry (USA-ATH), who did it twice, in the standing high jump and standing long jump from 1900-08.
  • Now has 22 Olympic gold medals and 26 medals. If he was an NOC, Phelps would stand 39th on the list of most gold medals won, and 57th on the list of most medals won.
  • Only 23 NOCs have won as many gold medals at 4 consecutive Olympic Games as Phelps has.
  • With 13 individual gold medals, Michael of Baltimore has broken the record held by Leonidas of Rhodes, who won 12 titles at the Ancient Olympics from 164-152 BCE, however …
  • Some shadows have been cast on Leonidas’ records. Apparently the IOC has started to re-test the doping samples from 152 BC, and there is a rumor that Leonidas’ A Sample was positive. He is appealing this to the Αθλητικό Διαιτητικό Δικαστήριο.  More on this important story to come.

A Tale of Two Simones

Simone Biles won the gymnastics all-around gold medal for the USA yesterday and Simone Manuel won a 100 metre freestyle gold medal for the USA yesterday. This was the 21st time in Olympic history that two people from the same country, with the same first names, won gold medals in individual events on the same day.  This is the 6th time it has been done by USA athletes. Here are the previous times it has happened. (With thanx to Michele Walker for bringing up this thought)

Name Gdr NOC Year Spt Event Date
Aleksandr Ivanitsky M URS 1964 WRE Heavy FS 14 Oct 1964
Aleksandr Medved M URS 1964 WRE Sub-Heavy FS 14 Oct 1964
Aleksandr Popov M RUS 1996 SWI 100 m free 22 Jul 1996
Aleksandr Karelin M RUS 1996 WRE Heavy GR 22 Jul 1996
Aleksandr Dityatin M URS 1980 GYM Rings 25 Jul 1980
Aleksandr Tkachov M URS 1980 GYM Parallel Bars 25 Jul 1980
Bill Smith M USA 1948 SWI 400 m free 4 Aug 1948
Bill Porter M USA 1948 ATH 110 m hurdles 4 Aug 1948
Georgi Kostadinov M BUL 1972 BOX Supra-Light 10 Sep 1972
Georgi Markov M BUL 1972 WRE Light-Middle GR 10 Sep 1972
Harry Mallin M GBR 1924 BOX Supra-Middle 20 Jul 1924
Harry Mitchell M GBR 1924 BOX Sub-Heavy 20 Jul 1924
Ioannis Frangoudis M GRE 1896 SHO Pistol 11 Apr 1896
Ioannis Malokinis M GRE 1896 SWI 100m free for sailors 11 Apr 1896
Ioannis Georgiadis M GRE 1896 FEN Sabre Individual 9 Apr 1896
Ioannis Mitropoulos M GRE 1896 GYM Rings 9 Apr 1896
Krisztián Pars M HUN 2012 ATH Hammer Throw 5 Aug 2012
Krisztián Berki M HUN 2012 GYM Pommelled Horse 5 Aug 2012
Mark Breland M USA 1984 BOX Middle 11 Aug 1984
Mark Schultz M USA 1984 WRE Supra-Middle FS 11 Aug 1984
Olga Kuzenkova F RUS 2004 ATH Hammer Throw 25 Aug 2004
Olga Slyusareva F RUS 2004 CYC Points Race 25 Aug 2004
Ralph Craig M USA 1912 ATH 200 m 11 Jul 1912
Ralph Rose M USA 1912 ATH Shot Put 2-Hands 11 Jul 1912
Shinji Morisue M JPN 1984 GYM Horizontal Bar 4 Aug 1984
Shinji Hosokawa M JPN 1984 JUD Light 4 Aug 1984
Steve Hegg M USA 1984 CYC Individual Pursuit 1 Aug 1984
Steve Fraser M USA 1984 WRE Middle-Heavy GR 1 Aug 1984
Svetlana Khorkina F RUS 1996 GYM Uneven Bars 29 Jul 1996
Svetlana Masterkova F RUS 1996 ATH 800 m 29 Jul 1996
Tom Burke M USA 1896 ATH 100 m 10 Apr 1896
Tom Curtis M USA 1896 ATH 110 m hurdles 10 Apr 1896
Valery Shary M URS 1976 WLT Supra-Middle 24 Jul 1976
Valery Rezantsev M URS 1976 WRE Middle-Heavy GR 24 Jul 1976
Viktor Kapitonov M URS 1960 CYC Road Race Individual 30 Aug 1960
Viktor Zhdanovich M URS 1960 FEN Foil Individual 30 Aug 1960
Viktor Shamburkin M URS 1960 SHO Small-Bore Rifle 3 Pos 8 Sep 1960
Viktor Bushuyev M URS 1960 WLT Sub-Middle 8 Sep 1960
Viktor Tsybulenko M URS 1960 ATH Javelin Throw 8 Sep 1960
Vladimir Engibaryan M URS 1956 BOX Sub-Middle 1 Dec 1956
Vladimir Safronov M URS 1956 BOX Sub-Light-Middle 1 Dec 1956

Note that it has never happened in the Winter Olympics – far fewer events to choose from there. Also note the 8 September 1960 occurrence, when Viktor Shamburkin, Viktor Bushuyev, and Viktor Tsybulenko all won golds for the former Soviet Union on the same day – the only time 3 different athletes with the same name pulled this off on the same day.

And you guys thought I slept at night!

USOC Stuff for Thursday, 11 August 2016

After Day 6 of the Olympics (Day 1 = day of Opening Ceremony), @TeamUSA is pretty much on a par with its performance at the previous 6 Olympic Games. After Wednesday, 10 August, the USA has 11 golds, 11 silver, 10 bronzes, and 32 medals. Here is what @TeamUSA has done since 1992.

Year DayOly Date Rank G S B TM
1992 6 30 July 1992 2 11 11 10 32
1996 6 24 July 1996 1 10 13 4 27
2000 6 20 September 2000 1 11 6 6 23
2004 6 18 August 2004 1 10 11 9 30
2008 6 13 August 2008 1 10 8 12 30
2012 6 1 August 2012 2 12 8 9 29

Tonite Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte swim in the 200 IM finals. Both can set all sorts of Olympic bests.

  • If Michael of Baltimore wins, it is his 13th individual Olympic title, breaking the tie with Leonidas of Rhodes, who won 12 individual titles in the stadion, diaulos, and hoplite races at the 164, 160, 156, and 152 BC Ancient Olympic Games.
  • If the Phelps OC wins, this gives him 22 Olympic gold medals, moving him ahead of Czechia and Ethiopia, and to 39th place among all NOCs. His 26 Olympic medals would also rank him 58th among NOCs in terms of medals won.

If Ryan Lochte wins gold tonite, he moves up on all sorts of Olympic lists, as follows:

  • His 7th gold medal would move him to =13th among all male Olympians; =7th among all @TeamUSA Olympians; =6th among all @TeamUSA male Olympians.
  • His 7th gold medal in swimming would move him to 4th among male Olympic swimmers, trailing Michael Phelps (21 – as of yesterday), Mark Spitz (9), and Matt Biondi (8) (he is actually 4th on this list with 6 golds). He would thus also be 4th among US male Olympic swimmers. He would also move to 5th among Olympic swimmers, trailing Phelps, Spitz, Biondi, and Jenny Thompson (8). He would thus also be 5th among US Olympic swimmers.
  • If Lochte wins, he becomes the oldest individual gold medalist in swimming, previously (before Rio) held by Inge de Bruijn (NED-2004), who was 30-363 in the 50 free; but the mark was broken by Phelps gold medal in the 200 butterfly, when he was 31-040. Lochte will be 32-008 tonite.
  • Lochte would move to 3rd on the oldest gold medalist list in swimming, trailing only 2 @TeamUSA swimmers – Dara Torres, who was 33-162 in the 2000 medley relay; and Jason Lezak, who was 32-279 in the 2008 medley relay. Lochte will turn 32 two days before the Rio Opening Ceremony.

All the Olympic Stats You'll Ever Need