The most boring job at the Olympics…

Nope, not talking about the field cleaners or the bleacher sweepers… I’m talking about the guy who has to sit in the birds’ nest at the track and field events and say ‘SET’ into the microphone for the beginning of every race. Not only does he sound bored, he sounds…. German? What’s up with that? Anyone else notice?


  1. I’m a Starter with Athletics Alberta so I can say with all honesty we are trained and it’s drilled into our heads to sound….boring on the ‘set’ command. After the “On your marks” command, the athletes are extremely focused. It’s imperative the ‘set’ command is a low key command because you would be amazed at how a quick loud speaking ‘set’ will set the athletes off running which in turn makes for a false start. Another false start and the athlete who makes that next false start is disqualified. It’s incredibly stressful for the Starter (who has a whole list of things they are watching for while the athletes prepare themselves in the blocks) to give the athletes the best start we can. So believe it or not there’s a very good reason for us sounding boring :o)

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