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2012 U.S. Olympic Trials: SI's Tim Layden Goes Inside Track And Field Photo Finish

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The women's 100 meter event awaits a runoff for third place between Jeneba Tarmoh and Allyson Felix after the two finished in a dead heat for the spot on June 23. However, the call certainly wasn't an easy one -- or even one settled by the photo-finish evaluator.

As Tim Layden details in an excellent article for Sports Illustrated, Roger Jennings, the man who had to determine the photo finish, knew he was going to have a tough time once he saw the image of Tarmoh and Felix cross the finish line:

"Then I saw this ... " He scrolls over to the image of Tarmoh and Jeter, clearly very close. "I went, 'Oooooffff.'"

Jennings also said, into his headset, which is connected to the infield officials (another headset is wired to the NBC broadcast support team, for whom Jennings provides immediate finish information), "Oh, sh--." He recalled Tuesday: "This is exactly what you don't want at the Olympic trials."

Jennings had to determine when each runner's torso crossed the finish line. As the story goes, Tarmoh was timed at 0.001 second faster than Felix, but even after those unofficial times went up on the board, nothing was settled. Bob Podkaminer, one of the referees at the trials, eventually overruled the times and that led to the dead-heat procedures that were announced.

Now we wait for either a runoff or possibly a coin toss.

Stay with our StoryStream for the latest from the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Track & Field in Eugene as Team USA is decided.

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