Bob Beamon’s Leap
January 22, 2016
When I heard that this year’s heat record had surpassed the previous record (2014), not by hundredths of a degree as we normally see, but by almost 3 tenths of a degree C – one of the first things I thought of was Bob Beamon’s leap at the 1968 Mexico City Olympic Long Jump competition.
In that leap, Beamon set the world record, not by the usual fraction of an inch, but by 55 cm (21 3/4 in). According to Wiki, “Prior to Beamon’s jump, the world record had been broken thirteen times since 1901, with an average increase of 6 cm (2 1/2 in.) and the largest increase being 15 cm (6 in.”
Beamon’s record stood for 23 years. Our record may be broken in 2016.
Deke Arndt of NOAA discusses the margin below.