It is almost the end of the year, and I plan to do a retrospective year-end post mortem as seems to be the thing these days. I'll do that in a day or two.
Today I got dropped from the US Team, so I'll tackle that first.
It was a little bit of a surprise, and a little not. I will get around to why I should be dropped from the Team in the retrospective. Here, just why I was surprised.
It looks like I have just been on the Team the past three years, so not so long. The first year, 2006, they selected 20! So, it wasn't so tough then. In 2007 it was 14. A little tougher. In 2008 I think it was just 11, so a lot tougher than 2006. For 2009 it looks like 12, so almost like last year. I started on the B Team, and was on the C Team the last 2 years.
I was surprised because I thought it was USOF rankings-based, but apparently not quite. I was 11th in the USOF rankings, but the 12th and 13th people got selected.
Looking back on things, it seems like my first US Team selection in 2006 was actually more bizarre. Then, I think I may have jumped over people, and Randy, also selected to the Team, did a WR long jump, as far as I can tell. Anyway, I'm not sure there were the same rules then. And, this may be justice for that anomaly.
This time, the rules are "selection is based on A-meet M/F21 performances during the preceding year with preference given to championship events, the Team Trials (during applicable years) and rankings."
I would think A-meet performances and rankings are the same metric?
Setting aside rankings, it must be something else. I did OK-ish in the TT: 7th for the weekend (on the scoring list.) In championships, a mixed bag. It looks like I did 7 championship races? The first set was goodish. There, I was 12, 8, and 3. The second set was terrible. 18, 11, 24 and DNF.
Anyway, this is not supposed to be why I shouldn't make the team, but why I was surprised to have two people jump ahead of me. Kenny could make sense. In head-to-head pairings, he beat me 4 to 2 (I think) including at the TT. That is real solid. However, I beat Nikolai 5 to 2: 3 times at the TT, once at the US Sprint Champs, and at the US Ultra Long. He got me once at the US Sprint Champs and once at the Pig Middle. So, on a relative basis I'm not sure that makes much sense.
Nikolai did not go to the NAs, and I didn't go to the US. So that is something. However, he did rather poorly at the US Champs. His 2 rankings for the 2 days were lower than my three rankings (aside from the DNF) at the NAs. So, that seems like a relative wash. (OK, my DNF sucked, but even with that, I don't know how the relative comparison yields this outcome.)
Now, its possible that the committee uses a complicated algorithm to score people on a binary basis, and therefore my head-to-head hand waving is trumped. I doubt it, but you never know.
Anyway, what is the point of all this? Nothing. That is the way the cookie crumbles, so to speak, and you win some and you lose some. Live by the sword, die by the sword. But, given my analytical proclivities, and that it is the time of the year to do post mortems, this gets the ball rolling.