In the 2012 Summer Olympics in London seven out of eight finalists in the men’s 100 meter dash crossed the finish line in under 10 seconds. This result and other recent performances of exceptional sprinters such as Bolt have made experts wonder, not whether a new record will be set, but when and how much it will lower the present record. Seeking an answer, some researchers have tried to model the available data with the goal of using them to predict future records. This article presents a different approach based on theory of records for independent and identically distributed observations. It modifies the number of attempts to break a record to make the results of the theory of records applicable to this situation. The modification is necessary because many sports records have been broken more frequently than what this theory predicts. Two modifications of the number of attempts are considered, fixed rate via a geometric increase, and random rate via a non-homogeneous Poisson process.
Noubary, Farzad and Noubary, Reza
Survival Analysis of the Men’s 100 Meter Dash Record,
Applications and Applied Mathematics: An International Journal (AAM), Vol. 11,
1, Article 6.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.pvamu.edu/aam/vol11/iss1/6