Video: Presidential Steeplechase concludes week of Olympic-themed races

Nationals racing presidents steeplechase OlympicsNationals racing presidents Thomas JeffersonNationals racing presidents Olympics steeplechase TeddyThe Nationals racing presidents pushed the envelope once again as they wrapped up an Olympic-themed homestand at Nationals Park.

After taking on race walkingfencingrhythmic gymnasticstrack, swimming, and sailing, the Nats had turned to Twitter looking for suggestions for the final event.  Fan suggestions leaned toward the unlikely, such as shooting, rowing, handball, trampoline, and badminton; but nobody anticipated what happened on Sunday — the racing presidents turned equestrian with a Steeplechase that incorporated racing, hurdles, and water.

Of course, in the actual Olympics, the point is to jump over the water on horses, but on Sunday the presidents jumped into kiddie pools scattered around the warning track.

Unfortunately, Teddy Roosevelt took his time and seemed more interested in splashing around than in winning. As Jefferson raced ahead to victory, Roosevelt splashed in the pool, and failed to cross the finish line.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Racing presidents take on Olympic sailing via Segways fitted with sails

Nationals Racing Presidents Olympic Sailing SegwaysThe Nationals racing presidents once again stretched beyond the boundaries of track & field as their week of Olympic tributes continued at Nationals Park.

After taking on swimming on Friday, the mascot team stayed in the virtual water Saturday with their own unique take on an Olympic sailing regatta.

George, Tom, Abe and Teddy entered the field aboard Segway personal transporters, each of which was fitted with a sail.

Alas, the wind was no help to Teddy Roosevelt, who brought up the rear for loss #497.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Shark attacks Teddy, secret service no help as presidents race Olympic tributes continue

Presidents Race Olympics Relay Terrance ScottPresidents Race Olympics Relay Race BatonsPresidents Race Olympics Relay Teddy LostNationals Racing Presidents Olympic Swimming 400 individual medleyNationals Racing Presidents Olympic Swimming 400 IMNationals Racing Presidents Olympic Swimming 400 IMPresidents Race Olympics Swimming Shark Attacks TeddyNationals Presidents Race Shark Attacks TeddyThe Nationals racing presidents continued their week of Olympic tributes with Friday’s doubleheader at Nationals Park, mixing the predictable with the absurd, and extending Teddy Roosevelt’s winless streak to 496 races.

The newly dismantled Miami Marlins arrived in town early for an afternoon makeup game, and the lightly-attended affair included a presidents race first: members of the Nat Pack and the “Secret Service” who escort the presidents around the ball park participated in an Olympic presidents race 4-man relay.

Secret Service member Scott took the first leg vs. Nat Packer Terrance before handing things off to Abe Lincoln and Thomas Jefferson, respectively. Lincoln extended the lead, and by the time Nat Packer Jason got the baton to George Washington for the anchor leg, he was way behind, but Teddy’s baton transition was weak and he faded in the home stretch, handing George the win.

By the time game 2 began, 32,334 fans had arrived, and the day of presidents race firsts continued as the evening crowd was treated to a 4th-inning spectacle that was worthy of a Fellini movie.

In the first-ever presidents race swim meet, the giant-headed Rushmores entered the stadium wearing goggles and swim caps, and advanced around the warning track making swimming motions with their arms in the styles of the 400 Meter Individual Medley– first the butterfly, then the backstroke, the breast stroke, and freestyle.

Teddy, of course, tried to “swim” while carrying an inner tube.

As if the surreal image of Thomas Jefferson leading the pack of “swimmers” down the first base line wasn’t enough for the Nationals Park crowd, a person in a shark costume then appeared out of the Nationals’ bullpen.

With the shark chasing the field, what happened next was inevitable, and Teddy’s humiliation was complete.

“And that is the most mutant looking shark I’ve ever seen in my life,” said color commentator F.P. Santangelo on the MASN broadcast. “That is an outfield shark, folks.”

Video below:

Video: Racing presidents perform rhythmic gymnastics in Olympic tribute

Nationals racing presidents Olympic rhythmic gymnastics Teddy gets airNationals racing presidents Olympic rhythmic gymnasticsNationals racing presidents Olympic rhythmic gymnastics George Washington posesIf you’ve ever wondered what rhythmic gymnastics would look like if Olympic athletes had to wear 10 foot high, 45 pound costumes, the answer arrived with gusto Thursday night at Nationals Park.

After race walking and fencing through the first two matches of the series, the Rushmore Four continued to push the envelope with their week of Olympic tributes, entering the field carrying ribbons and performing a presidential rendition of rhythmic gymnastics.

“Good form and execution by George,” intoned Nationals P.A. announcer Jerome Hruska. “Wonderful control of the apparatus by Teddy.”

The presidents then paused in front of the visitors bullpen for invidual displays. “That’s a 10 for George,” Hruska continued as Washington twirled from the ground. Teddy received “a slight deduction,” but the reasons weren’t clear.

The presidents then took off towards the finish line, but Teddy, Abe, and Tom got tangled up in ribbons, and George Washington leapt to victory.

“George gets the gold,” added Nationals broadcaster Bob Carpenter
on the MASN broadcast. “My greatest challenge as the Nationals TV announcer doing play by play is making sense of the presidents race,” he added. “Baseball is a simple game compared to that.”

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Racing presidents take up swords in Olympic fencing tribute

Racing presidents Olympic fencing with swords Teddy v Abe LincolnRacing presidents Olympic fencing with swords Teddy v GeorgeRacing presidents Olympic fencing with swords Teddy v TomThe Nationals racing presidents continued their week of Olympic tributes on Wednesday night at Nationals Park with a rare non-race event — fencing.

Teddy Roosevelt emerged from the centerfield gate bearing a foil, a flexible sword used in Olympic competitions. With Abe Lincoln waiting to confront Teddy on the warning track, the two crossed swords, but Teddy knocked Lincoln’s foil into the air, and ran past.

George Washington was next, and Roosevelt quickly dispatched him with a thrust move that sent the Founding Father to the ground.

Teddy took off, but Thomas Jefferson was waiting for him at the finish line, standing motionless and blocking his path with a sabre. Roosevelt advanced and swung at Jefferson, but Teddy’s foil shattered against Tom’s much stiffer sword.

Jefferson lunged at the defenseless Bull Moose to score the victory. Teddy collapsed to the ground, and Jefferson walked across the finish line.

Here’s the finish line video, followed by the call by Bob Carpenter on MASN, with some good close-ups of Lincoln’s parry.

Finish lideo courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Nationals Racing presidents kick off a week of Olympic races

Nationals racing presidents Olympic race walkingNationals racing presidents Olympic race walking Teddy Roosevelt LosesThe Washington Nationals racing presidents opened a six game home stand at Nationals Park promising to dedicate all races this week to events of the Olympic Games.

The festivities kicked off Tuesday night with a “race walk” at Nationals Park set to Olympic music (yes, race walking is in fact an Olympic event).

George Washington led a tight pack into the right field corner, but the pace picked up in the home stretch, and Thomas Jefferson broke into a moderate sprint.

George and Abe gave chase, leaving Teddy Roosevelt as the only president to stick to the rules.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Racing Presidents Run Hurdles to Honor Olympics

Teddy Roosevelt hurdles in Sunday's Olympic-inspired Washington Nationals Presidents RaceIn their last home game to be played during these 2008 Olympics, the Washington Nationals pulled out all the stops to stage an Olympics-inspired presidents race during the fourth inning Sunday at Nationals Park.

If Saturday night’s race-walk didn’t impress you, then the sight of our favorite 10-foot tall racing presidents jumping over hurdles certainly had to. That’s right — hurdles.

In a scene reminiscent of a previous Olympiad, Abe Lincoln, who has whipped the competition this season, emerged during the race introductions wearing Michael Johnson-inspired gold running shoes. Teddy Roosevelt and Abe Lincoln each ran the anchor leg of a hurdle relay which was confined to the outfield. Abe beat Teddy to the finish, and was declared the winner along with teammate George Washington. This is the first time a joint victory has been awarded in presidents race history.

I hope at least one of you readers captured this memorable spectacle on video.

Photo courtesy of flickr member Liliang

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