THE DIN, THE COLOR, THE MOOD OF INDOOR TRACK

February 24, 1964

Indoors, track and field is a microcosm of itself. Everything is smaller, closer, more intense. There are far more spills, more body contact, more violence. In a brassy, circuslike atmosphere, the action is continuous. The band plays and the athlete is on show, his every move exposed to the curiosity of a savvy crowd.

The hurdler, his timing hampered by a heavily bandaged thigh, knocks down a hurdle in his drive for the lead. A frustrated relay runner angrily shoves a rival who moved into his lane.

The style seems relaxed, but the long-distance men are spent at the finish. If there is consolation for the anguish of an indoor mile, it is the noise. Used to running to whispers outdoors, winter track's biggest stars run 11 laps amid a thrilling, ever-mounting tumult.

Shotputters do things with ponderous dignity, like elephants. Here, a huge one meditates briefly before moving into the ring for his next giant heave.

A pole vaulter stares up into the endlessness of height, quietly gauging the distance between the end of the pole and the crossbar he hopes to clear.

FIVE ILLUSTRATIONSJEROME MARTIN

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)