Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Rise, Fall and Rise of English Triple Crown Racing Speeds

A horse with a crimson “6” displayed on either side of its girth processes to the parade ring. There are people milling about, looking over “Six” as well as the other entrants for the 2013 running of the St. Leger Stakes. Alongside Six stands a very short, wiry man dressed in a matching crimson outfit. He speaks with the trainer in hushed tones, discussing race strategy. Six is alert; energy radiates from the tip of it’s brown and white snout to the end of its finely groomed tail. As the pair leave the ring and canter to the gate, Six snorts a couple of times as the gates are closed behind it. In short order, the other steeds are similarly lined up and a bell rings. And they’re off!
thumbnail image: The Rise, Fall and Rise of English Triple Crown Racing Speeds
Horses are fast; according to the Guinness Book of World Records, the fastest average speed ever attained by a horse is 70.76 kph (43.97 mph) (1). That record was obtained over two furlongs (about 402 meters or 1/4 of a mile). For distances more comparable to Triple Crown racing, the fastest average speed over ~2.4 km (1.5 miles) is 60.86 kph (37.82 mph)1. It stands to reason that the longer the distance, the slower the average speed will be although the track surface has a large impact on this (see Table 1).

See the rest of this article from the author of Graph of the Week on Statistics Views.

Monday, July 22, 2013

David vs. Goliath in Men's Professional Tennis

David dances lightly from side to side, his small feet stirring up wisps of dust from the clay surface. Twirling his racket in anticipation, he peers intently at his colossal foe hoping to spot some clue where the first serve will go. Across the net is a giant of a man, glaring at David with a stone-faced scowl. The crowd, once rowdy, is now silent; all eyes are riveted on Goliath as he bounces the ball on the rust-colored surface. Known for his amazing strength and exceptional height, they eagerly await his first monster serve.

See the rest of this article from the author of Graph of the Week on Statistics Views.

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