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Numbers game

By The Cruncher   September 2005

Beating world records The world athletics championships in August saw some stirring performances, but how much more improvement in world records can we expect to see? Progress has been painfully slow in the men’s 100 metres, often seen as the blue-riband event of any championship. As long ago as 1930, the world record was 10.3 seconds, and now it is only 9.77 seconds. Reducing the world record by 5 per cent took 75 years. Even cutting it by 2 per cent took 37 years, with the great Jim Hines running 9.95 seconds in 1968. Hines ran under ten seconds on…

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