Trevell Quinley stated an obvious but unspoken truth recently, when he reportedly stated: "Our Olympic trials are harder than the Olympic games, by far."
Quinley is a member of the U.S. Track & Field Team, in the long jump event. He competed in the brutal Eugene, Oregon trials last month. After that, he does not seem to worried about the Olympic event itself.
Are the U.S. trials really more difficult than the Olympics? Here are a few reasons why they might be:
1. The U.S. is consistently one of the top-medal winners at the at Olympic Games, and no one expects Beijing to be any different. It stands to reason that the competition among U.S. athletes preceding the games is therefore at least as difficult as the Olympics.
2. Athletes have more at stake in the trials. The difference between an athlete who makes it onto the Olympic team and one who does not might only be a hundredth of a second, but the effect is huge. Once you make the Olympic team, you will have a taste of celebrity, whether you win medals or not.
3. Teams compete in the Olympics. In the realm of team sports (soccer, baseball, volleyball, etc.), the trials are certainly more competitive. In the trials, individuals are on their own as they compete for slots on the team. But in the actual Olympics athletes have the comfort of being part of a team
Even if the U.S. trials are more difficult than the actual Olympics, there is one huge difference between the two: Americans watch the Olympics. How many of you tuned in to any of the trials on television? How many will watch the Olympics? There you go.