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First ever 'dead heat' photo-finish at US Olympic trials

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First ever 'Dead Heat' photo-finish at US Olympic trials results in the creation of new tie-breaking procedures.

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dead heat
dead heat

US sprinters Allyson Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh both crossed the finish line in exactly 11.068 seconds on Sunday to tie for third place in the final of the women's 100 meter Olympics qualifier. The "dead heat" finish was captured by a single camera shooting 3,000 frames per second located on the inside of the track — a second outside camera that's traditionally used for photo-finish images was obscured from determining third place due to the athletes' arms (the torso position determines the winner).

The dead-heat finish is a first for US Olympic track and field leaving the coveted third Olympic team spot in doubt as both the USA Track & Field and the United States Olympic Committee scrambled to announce new dead heat procedures on Sunday night. In short, if neither athlete declines her position on the Olympic team then a tie-breaker will be determined by a coin toss or run-off.