Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

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Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby JeffOYB » Fri Jan 05, 2018 9:30 am

I just learned about the famous episode of when "Oddvar broke his pole." It happened in 82 and it's still a big deal in Norway.

...He caught the Soviet Savjalov near the finish then tangled on a climb and broke his pole. Had a great pole exchange. Then the legend has it that he caught Savjalov in the sprint and won.

However, per Wiki it says shared gold, so there's that.

Also per the video he was leading and Savjalov caught him. And in slow-motion it really looks like the Soviet won. But what part do they judge? Is it the ski tip? Well, it's quite the photo finish.

...It also looks like Oddvar BALKED the Soviet at the line. Looks bad. Oddvar is getting passed FAST and he suddenly lunges out with a skate move and totally kicks Savjalov's foot and lunges with his own other foot. It kind of looks like he is trying to kick off of his opponent's foot. ...Hold back the rival and lunge forward w your other foot. But Savjalov's free foot shoots forward very rapidly. It's a crazy photo finish -- the Soviet might nip him by an inch. Savjalov's boot and body do pass ahead. Ah, the comments agree w me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ACAXrtgEyUc
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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:34 am

I have never seen a YouTube video with so many commercials. Very tiring to watch.

The Norwegian team should have insisted on being given the silver medals since I believe that at least Mikkelsplass saw that Zavyalov crossed the finish line first.
Last edited by Magnus Johansson on Sat Jan 06, 2018 8:44 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Sat Jan 06, 2018 5:33 am

People ask here "where were you when Brå broke his pole" -like they do in US about the JFK assassination.. :lol:

At that time I believe they measured the middle of the calf instead of the foot like now so it was about equal.

No doubt Oddvar hindered Savjalov at the finish line, probably on purpose too, but likely payback when Savjalov hindered Brå's earlier attack that led to his pole being broken in the first place.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Sat Jan 06, 2018 5:35 am

Magnus Johansson wrote:I have never seen a YouTube video with so many commercials. Very tiring to watch.

Firefox with AdBlocker Ultimate removes absolutely all ads here.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Sat Jan 06, 2018 8:39 am

Neuro wrote:At that time I believe they measured the middle of the calf instead of the foot like now so it was about equal.

The Norwegian commentators only talk about the boot or foot.

Neuro wrote:No doubt Oddvar hindered Savjalov at the finish line, probably on purpose too, but likely payback when Savjalov hindered Brå's earlier attack that led to his pole being broken in the first place.

The commentators mentioned a possible protest against Zavyalov when Brå broke his pole; was there one?

Thank you for the tip about the ad blocker.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Sat Jan 06, 2018 10:38 am

Magnus Johansson wrote:
Neuro wrote:At that time I believe they measured the middle of the calf instead of the foot like now so it was about equal.

The Norwegian commentators only talk about the boot or foot.

They didn't really know exactly. The foot came later, maybe as a result of this (as it's easier to see on photo finishes).

There was no protest lodged. Can't really do that when you get gold, even if there is a good reason.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Sun Jan 07, 2018 4:41 am

Neuro wrote:They didn't really know exactly. The foot came later, maybe as a result of this (as it's easier to see on photo finishes).

Was there anyone who really knew? What did the FIS rules say about this in 1982?

Neuro wrote:There was no protest lodged. Can't really do that when you get gold, even if there is a good reason.

If the Soviets got the gold against the rules it should have been corrected. But perhaps the Norwegians felt that the decision to give them and the Soviets gold medals was not worth challenging. After all: What is truth and justice compared to gold medals?

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:17 am

Well someone knew, and that was the decision, AFAICR undisputed by the Soviets.

About the shared gold, maybe it was felt that both Savjalov and Brå hindered each other so everyone was fine with that.

Brå was convinced at the time (and still is), that Savjalev hindered his attack in the last uphill on purpose, and if you see the video Brå had good momentum and likely would have gotten enough of an advantage to win it. He is sure he would have made it.

Afterwards they became friends and still keep in touch. In a way the shared gold was a nice sporting brotherly move at the height of the cold war.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Sun Jan 07, 2018 2:14 pm

Neuro wrote:Well someone knew, and that was the decision, AFAICR undisputed by the Soviets.

Since Finland shared its bronze with East Germany I really wonder if someone knew. A decision is not necessarily correct just because it is undisputed.

Neuro wrote:About the shared gold, maybe it was felt that both Savjalov and Brå hindered each other so everyone was fine with that.

Brå was convinced at the time (and still is), that Savjalev hindered his attack in the last uphill on purpose, and if you see the video Brå had good momentum and likely would have gotten enough of an advantage to win it. He is sure he would have made it.

This affirms what I wrote earlier about truth, justice and gold medals.

Neuro wrote:Afterwards they became friends and still keep in touch. In a way the shared gold was a nice sporting brotherly move at the height of the cold war.

After having watched the following video it is obvious that neither Oddvar Brå nor Alexander Zavyalov takes the whole thing very seriously today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIPXfNpDiXg

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Sun Jan 07, 2018 3:00 pm

In the video, Brå says his hand was the first to cross the finish line 8)

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:38 am

Neuro wrote:In the video, Brå says his hand was the first to cross the finish line 8)

Yes, and so it seems, I think. Maybe Oddvar was also an alpine skier. But I have never heard of the hand counting in a cross-country photo finish.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Neuro » Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:14 am

And maybe revealingly, Savjalev says in the video that after Brå went past the last uphill and he was on all fours on the snow, that he was considering grabbing Brå's ski which in a way confirms that the pole breaking was not entirely an accident..

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby Magnus Johansson » Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:52 am

Neuro wrote:And maybe revealingly, Savjalev says in the video that after Brå went past the last uphill and he was on all fours on the snow, that he was considering grabbing Brå's ski which in a way confirms that the pole breaking was not entirely an accident..

Ha, ha! I suspect the mentioned ski-grabbing was a joke by Alexander. The re-enactment video is very funny.

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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby JeffOYB » Mon Jan 08, 2018 8:09 pm

that was a funny video! i couldn't understand it, but I got the joke! ...then i saw another where Petter imitates Oddvar. ha!!!
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Re: Revisit a legend: when Oddvar broke his pole!

Postby liège » Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:54 am

From FIS:

316.3 When using hand-timing, the time is taken when the competitor's first foot crosses the finish line.

316.4 Electronic Timing
316.4.1 The following electronic timing technologies can be used to identify the official finish times:
- Electronic timing system based on photo cells. The measuring point of the light or photo barrier must be at a height of 25 cm above the snow surface.
- Photo finish system. The measuring point will be the toe of the first boot meeting the finish line.


At least on World Cup/World Championships/Olympics, they use the photo finish system, and have since (at least) 2002 based minimally on this photo of Frode Estil and Thomas Alsgaard in the 10km FS pursuit: https://www.gettyimages.at/detail/nachrichtenfoto/heber-city-skilanglauf-10km-jagdrennen-freistil-nachrichtenfoto/52813235?esource=SEO_GIS_CDN_Redirect#heber-city-skilanglauf10km-jagdrennen-freistilmaenner-zielfoto-frode-picture-id52813235

In 1993, I believe they were still using the "25cm off the snow" rule (as I recall some articles talking about it then), but either way, Smirnov [apparently] didn't know to put his leg/foot out, and Dæhlie did:
https://i.ytimg.com/vi/xTzpBTZeuBc/hqdefault.jpg


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