All these points are valid and important, handing over to the same guy every time is a must and if that isn’t possible then substitutes must be placed in the same running order as the missing runner, that way the handover can be practised with the same receiver. It seems to me they have no mark laid out for when to take off, that is a must and if it is hard to see the mark then the incomming runner must give some sort of vocal signal when he hits the mark. The most important thing though is the angle of the receivers hand, in the video above they have their palms face down but the thumb is inwards closer to the body, this is wrong, it forces the incomming runner to run almost behind the receiver and can cause bumping, it also forces the receiver to make adjustments to the baton after receiving it. I cannot stress enough, the best way is to have the palm down and the thumb facing outwards away from the body, when the baton is grasped and the arm brought forward the baton is in the correct position in the hand ready for the next handover, no adjustment is needed, it also allows the incomming runner to stay away and run on his side of the track, it also gives the incomming runner a secure and failsafe ‘V’ location in which to place the baton. This one simple change to the technique can make a whole world of difference to the baton exchange.
It’s indisputable that when you look at a list of champion 100m runners, you are looking at a list heavily tainted by doping. Therefore, if you are a 100m champion, you earn the title of World’s fastest man, and it comes free with a second title – world’s least trusted athlete (perhaps you share the latter with the Tour de France champion). Point is, it’s a package deal, and the doping spotlight is inevitable. Gatlin is merely the athlete currently standing in it, and its glare is that much more intense because of the circumstances around his arrival to this point.