The Pedants are in force today!
You think that was pedantic, it wasn't. If it's pedantry you want, then maybe it's worth pointing out that the term "4-minute mile" was never intended to represent a (physically correct) time measurement, but a shorthand for "running a mile in four minutes (or less)". That's semantics/linguistics, not physics, two totally different fields of science. And as for...
we all know what is meant when we read the sport pages.
... that is precisely the point, since we're reading two different meanings into the same statement, hence we don't "all know what is meant", we have different concepts of "what is meant", hence the discussion. Thankfully, the drag racing fraternity is not "the only (group of) people" doing it right, or else the confusion would be even bigger! To illustrate the point again, imagine two timekeepers, each holding a stop watch, one accurate to 1/1000 of a second, the other to 1/10. Now, to use the example of E. B.'s original post in this OT discussion, the first timekeeper registers a time of 1'45.894", what do you think the other watch will show? Why, 1'45.8", of course! Same with the dragsters, but imagine the second stop watch is only accurate to a full second: one will show 9.999", and the other one? That's right, it will show a time of 9 seconds!! It's a "9-second car", and everybody* knows that it has done a time under ten seconds.
* everybody but those who think that science is a waste of time