"I do see the odd fin here and there, which does make you paddle a bit faster. It keeps it interesting"
Of all our 114 living British Olympic gold medallists, there are only two who stand alone in their chosen sport - providing you count Track And Field as one - and both feature in Episode Eight of Colin Murray's Gold Run.
Gillian Sheen won fencing Gold in the individual foil in 1956, in the very same year that women were first allowed to compete in the event. It was also the first year the electronic system was introduced, as opposed to relying on each competitor’s honesty.
Her trip down under saw her compete in a fence-off with Olga Orban, a Romanian who had beaten Gillian in their group encounters leading up to their epic head-to-head. When she struck the winning blow, the Great British team captain ran across the piste, only to slip in emphatic fashion, much to the merriment of the masses looking on.
Gillian's achievement surprised the sporting world, and Sheen herself could not quite compute that she had achieved what so many other great fencers had not.
“That night, after I had been sleeping a while, I woke up thinking it was a dream. I reached out to the chair beside my bed and there was the medal. Relief! It was real,” she said.
What's remarkable is that Gillian would not be the only British fencing gold medallist had it not been for the honesty of Judy Guinness. She refused to accept two points in the 1932 individual foil final in Los Angeles, admitting to the referee that she had not made contact. She therefore left with silver.
''She is an amazing example of sportsmanship, said Gillian. ''I never knew her, but would love to have done.''
To find our other 'unique' golden Olympian, you only have to go back to the last Olympics in Beijing, when Tim Brabants became the only Briton to win the big one in either the sprint or slalom Kayak.
The paddling perfectionist will compete again in London this summer, as he attempts to add more metal to his collection of Olympic and World Gold, Silver and Bronze. If he fails it will not be through lack of commitment, as Brabants is fanatical about training.
''I miss it when I am not training,” she says. “After each Olympic cycle, when I go back to work I start to really miss those endorphins and the camaraderie with my coach and the other competitors.''
This time around, he has spent much of his time in Cape Town, South Africa, where training has proven to be a little more dangerous than it is for your average Olympian.
''We do go on the sea at Fish Hoek, and I do see the odd fin here and there, which does make you paddle a bit faster. It keeps it interesting!''
Both Gillian and Tim are in episode eight of Gold Run, as is Denise Lewis with the Philharmonic Orchestra, a trio of successful modern day sailors, our 1988 men’s hockey team, and the British rowing boat that began our golden Olympic era.
We wish Tim Brabants the best of luck heading into London 2012, and sincerely hope he survives that long to compete.