Wednesday, March 27, 2013


Back in 1979 I was a freshman at Michigan State University.  At this time, despite the proximately to the prior Ice Age, streaking (i.e. the practice of running around in public in front of people you know or might know with no clothes) was a big thing.  Being an 18-YO male from nowheresville, Midwest I of-course thought this would be a great thing to do.

So I did....with my less than awe inspiring body... I did run through the Brody complex cafeteria (where I worked 25 hours a week) to general derision and lack of interest.

That was streaking then.  this is streaking now.  The purpose of this post is to consider my Win and Not Win streaks in the great sport of triathlon.  This is part of the on-going data-mining exercise of the greatest, most irrelevant dataset ever created--my triathlon results database!  So are are all of my winning streaks (all 10 of them) and all of my not winning streaks of 4 or more:
So what can we learn from this analysis?  Here are my take-aways:

- My longest winning streak is only 4 races.  In fact, only twice have I been able to string together 3 or more wins in consecutive races.  Not that impressive.  However, when one considers my overall winning percetage through my first 127 races, it's not that surprising.

- I've won 39 of my first 127 AG races.  This is 30.7087%.  Based on this average win rate, and assuming an average distribution of races (an OK but not perfect assumption) then based on simple statistics I would expect the following:

- 2+ win streaks: Should happen 9.4610 % of the time.  I have 126 pairs of races so far.  therefore I would expect to have achieved 11.9 2+ win streaks.  I have 13 so all good.

- 3+ win streaks: should happen 2.8959 % of the time.  I have 125 triplets so far.  therefore I would expect to have achieved 3.6 3+ win streaks so far.  I have 3 so I guess I'm due here.

- 4+ win streaks: should happen 0.8893 % of the time.  I have 124 quartets so far.  Therefore I would expect to have achieved 1.1 4+ win streaks so far.  This is in line with actuall observed results.

- Not winning has been less of a problem since 2005.  Over the last 7 years, my longest losing streak has been 5 races.

- Most of my losing streaks start in June or July.  I've documented why this is in prior posts.

Hopefully, I'll add another win streak to the list at Smithfield a week Saturday...but it will be tough.

For sure I'll have more clothes on than in my first streak back in 1979!

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