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Ultimate 100m World Records Through Extreme-Value Theory

By J.H.J. Einmahl and S.G.W.R. Smeets

Abstract

We use extreme-value theory to estimate the ultimate world records for the 100m running, for both men and women. For this aim we collected the fastest personal best times set between January 1991 and June 2008. Estimators of the extreme-value index are based on a certain number of upper order statistics. To optimize this number of order statistics we minimize the asymptotic mean squared error of the moment estimator. Using the thus obtained estimate for the extreme-value index, the right endpoint of the speed distribution is estimated. The corresponding time can be interpreted as the estimated ultimate world record: the best possible time that could be run in the near future. We find 9.51 seconds for the 100m men and 10.33 seconds for the women. Running title. Ultimate 100m world records.

Publisher: Econometrics
Year: 2009
OAI identifier: oai:wo.uvt.nl:3497551
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