4 minute mile

It is reported that Sir Roger Bannister, the first person to run a mile in under four minutes, has died at the age of eighty-eight.

So Roger Bannister has died;
In 1954 he tried,
Not only tried but did succeed,
To run a mile at breakneck speed.

They all said it could not be done –
In four minutes a mile to run –
But Roger turned up on the train,
And on the track that (now) bears his name,
The other runners weren’t so fast,
And so he broke the time at last.

Result announced, the people cheered,
He might have died, they had all feared;
But Roger’s worry on that date,
Was that his train might have been late.

He was so proud of what he’d done,
The first four minute mile to run;
But post the race he did not shirk,
And had to set off back to work.

He checked his watch, he had no pain,
But had to run to catch his train;
Then back to London he did go,
Surprised that trains could be so slow.

Image – Jonathan Bowen / Wikimedia commons



Lizzy Yarnold

It is reported that Lizzy Yarnold won gold and Laura Deans bronze in the Skeleton at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and on the same day Izzy Atkin won the bronze medal in skiing.

In Britain we don’t get much snow,
But the Olympics need it so,
They must be held in places where,
Snow’s guaranteed with some to spare.

It’s just the same when people train,
The weather must be snow, not rain,
So we don’t many medals get,
But don’t abandon all hope yet.

Because in the Skeleton race,
We came first which is rather ace,
Then also got position queen –
The best result we’ve ever seen.

That is two medals in one day,
And not a great deal left to say,
Except that, in fact, I forgot,
We also, in the skiing slot,
Got one more which then makes it three,
The total of this winning spree.

So time to raise a glass of wine,
And, fingers crossed, in four years’ time,
There will be several medals more –
But probably not quite a score!


APTOPIX Pyeongchang Olympics Short Track Speed Skating Men

It is reported that North Korea has sent hundreds of cheerleaders to the South Korean Olympic Games and they all look the same!

Olympic Games are worth a watch,
Those taking part are all top-notch;
Some countries send supporters too,
Not often many, just a few.

Except, that is, DPRK,
About which the best one can say,
Is girls supplied to catch the eye,
Don’t seem to be in short supply.

There’s hundreds of them, all in rows,
And each and every one there knows,
Just how to move and when to cheer –
That they’ve instructions is quite clear.

But look more closely and you’ll see,
Something that’s been observed by me,
Which is, while they cheer at the game,
Their faces look the very same!

How can this be? It’s very strange,
And though we do not know their names,
These girls, who are made-up and toned,
Can not all possibly be cloned.

The explanation’s hard and so,
Since they will all soon have to go,
Back to the north at end of show,
It’s likely we will never know.



It is reported that the British competitors in the Skeleton (sledging to you and me) event at the South Korean Winter Olympic Games are wearing specially developed suits which may reduce drag and shave a few hundredths of a second off race times. Other teams are accusing them of cheating even though the suits were fully approved by the people who approve suits.

This is the first time I have heard,
Of Skeleton, which sounds absurd,
Because the racers in this sport,
Quite clearly have got some sort,
Of muscles underneath their suits,
Which gets them quickly down the chutes.

They hit the start, they go quite fast,
All trying not to be the last;
In fact, since that would be the worst,
They mostly want to finish first.

So they push off, they have to steer,
Because the track is rather queer;
Then if their time is of the best,
It means they’ve beaten all the rest.

As well as skill, they’ve suit and hat,
And nothing very wrong with that;
But there are rules and it is plain,
They can’t dress like an aeroplane.

This means no spoilers, bits stuck on,
Which would not be sine qua non;
And fabric must, woven or knit,
Be coating-free to make the kit.

The fabric, though, can be quite rough,
As long as it is also tough,
And if it’s rough, it lowers drag –
Not bad for just a bit of rag.

The suits thus made have all been passed,
So riders can go very fast,
And if they finish not so old,
They’ll get a medal, maybe gold.

But the suitmakers have a trick,
Because they’re clever, more than thick;
They give the rider – woman, man –
A thing that’s called a laser scan.

This maps their body shape so that,
No matter they are thin or fat,
The suit can be a perfect fit,
And hug the contours, every bit.

So if they now go on to win,
With shorter times and not much spin,
It will be part down to their kit,
And suits that are a perfect fit!

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It is reported that Formula 1 is to do away with its grid girls: pretty girls who stand around the starting grid looking nice for the general delectation of the drivers, mechanics and spectators, and that other sports including darts and boxing either have or are being told they should do the same.

Remember when we had Miss World?
Girls who came up on stage and twirled?
We all thought this was harmless fun,
And liked by almost everyone.

The girls, especially, that night,
As long as they could get things right,
Might make their fortune in a trice –
In modelling, to be precise.

For grid girls it was much the same,
They might achieve less instant fame,
But those that liked to twist and turn,
Could possibly their living earn.

“So far, so good,” you might well say,
“I’d like to watch them night and day,
To catch a glimpse of leg or thigh,
Which can be pleasant on the eye.”

That’s probably what most folk think,
But others now create a stink;
For girls, they say, of any race,
Should only show their hands and face,
Or else, unless the rest they hide,
They simply are objectified.

So if there’s skin there on display,
At daybreak, noon or end of day,
These people all seem now avowed,
It should no longer be allowed.

Such puritanical views are,
Taking all this a bit too far,
For if no pleasure’s to be had,
It really will be pretty sad,
And if girls are thus overdressed,
The rest of us will be depressed.

So bring them back, these girls galore,
The ones still there and even more;
And anyone with things to say,
Can just shut up and look away!

Image – https://www.flickr.com/photos/csalive/ Lezbo007



It is reported that a new study has found that horses cannot see the colour orange which has for decades been used to paint the cross-bars and take-off boards of fences and hurdles on racecourses including the Cheltenham Festival and Grand National.

If you’re a horse, you’ll wonder why,
When you are weighing up by eye,
The hurdles made from bits of tree,
They’re very difficult to see.

They’re painted in a colour which,
The jockey, who is just a titch,
Can see, it seems, quite well enough,
So all right when he gets tipped off.

But, for a horse, it’s not so good,
When you’re approaching in the mud,
And struggling to maintain a pace,
Which might just win the bloody race.

But humans recently observed,
That orange fences are absurd,
And now they want to put things right,
By painting them a colour bright.

So we can help them; what to use,
So we’ll not kick them with our shoes?
They could try yellows, whites or blues,
Which come in such attractive hues,
But better not have green or grey –
They’re hard to see on any day.

But one that could end our gripes,
Would be to paint the things in stripes;
That might just help us all to win,
But don’t then let the zebras in!

Image – Paul / Horse Racing

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It is reported that a UK survey has shown that golf is considered the most boring of all spectator sports. Athletics is the least boring.

Some golfers can be quite obsessed,
Believing their game is the best,
And golf, therefore, is bound to be,
Much everybody’s cup of tea.

They whack the ball, it flies up high,
Invisible against the sky,
And then it comes down with a thud;
It’s on the green if any good,
Or if the shot was worse than that,
It comes down in the water – splat!

But where it lands, it matters not,
It’s out of sight and earshot,
And spectators will be dismayed,
To find it has again been played,
While they were walking to the green,
Towards this ball they’ve not yet seen.

And thus it is with every hole,
A sentence quite without parole,
Until the final hole is past,
And they can have a drink at last.

For hole nineteen is not the same,
It’s probably why most folk came;
It needs no special strength or skill,
But stay too long and you’ll be ill!