[quote author="Daniel Andrews" date="1245498929"]
Last I checked Hockey and Skating are king in Canada and indoor track isn’t a real winner there so its going to be hard to find potential let alone for year training of a structured or unstructured environment to allow running at fast speeds from very young ages through to adulthood. Not enough opportunity.
The hockey / skating argument was a softball. Glad you at least hit that. The participation rates are no greater than basketball, baseball and football in the US.
As for Sweden, the have produced finalists in more athletics events than Barbados can dream of. Hockey, Speed Skating, Nordic skiing are their major sports. How does a country of 10 million contend for a hockey medal at every Olympics against the likes of Canada, Russia, US, Germany, Czech Republic. Too broad of a sport base and far greater isolation of speed/power athletes into Hockey.
Even if 95% of the would be speed-power athletes avoided track to do an ice sport (and this is obviously a ridiculously high number)…there should still be enough athletes to overcome St Kitts and Nevitts!
You need to think a little deeper than skimming off just numbers and ask why? Instead of just chalking it up statistics X, Y, and Z.
You need to do a little math because even under your best case scenarios the numbers still don’t add up for what you’re proposing. In fact they’re not even close.[/quote]
If each of these countries you listed focused solely on short sprints in athletics then yes the numbers would make more sense. Also, what about other opportunities as in professions are there to pursue in Caribbean Islands as opposed to Canada, Sweden or Germany? Diversity of Opportunities and Isolation of Opportunities diametrically oppose each other. Places like the Caribbean Islands have far less diversity in opportunities horizontal and vertically when compared to Japan, Sweden, etc… This makes simple comparisons of stats useless in the grand scheme of things. Next you have to factor in allocated resources to development and training at the elite levels. This even broadens the disparity because funds in Sweden and Canada for athletics are split for developing sprinters, jumpers, distance runners, and throwers. In Jamaica, Quarrie is taking the smart approach to leaving Isolation of sporting success at sprints/hurdles by working one step at a time to develop his next event groups and each step seems a logical progression, going from sprints to multis which allows him to branch off to mids starting with 800m (notice the number Jamaican HS’s running sub 7:50s at the Penn Relays) which is a logical step after he’s developed a vast pool of 400m talent, and to jumps from the pool of multis he’s developed from his short sprint/hurdler pool he’s developed, but he’s not going to deviate from his base which is sprints and hurdles. The problem the Jamaicans may run into is they may end up right now just like the US.
The same reason West African countries don’t dominate Jamaica and other Caribbean Islands is those West Africans countries generally have far broader opportunities and spend less in resources on track and more on soccer.