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Mark Foster, GB flag-bearer at Beijing - a gold medal hope too?

Today is tinged with sadness for me as I bid farewell to the Olympic countdown that has been my life for the last three and-a-bit months (I have done bits of other stuff too, just in case the boss is reading and, yes, I have had a haircut).

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 1 day - Golden GB"

Recent entries

Since women were first allowed to compete in the track and field events at the 1928 Olympic Games, Britain has produced just seven gold medallists.

It took until 1964 to register a first gold, when Mary Rand set a new long jump world record to become Britain's first "golden girl".

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 2 days - Magnificent seven"

GB sailor Ben Ainslie (left) and cyclist Bradley Wiggins

Just six British Olympians have won three or more Olympic gold medals.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 3 days - Triple gold"

American athlete Jesse Owens competing at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

There is no doubting that America's Jesse Owens was the star of the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 4 days - Owens' Olympics"

British rower Steve Redgrave with his five Olympic gold medals

Sir Steve Redgrave
reigned supreme on the Olympic rowing lakes of the world for 16 years, picking up six medals across five Games.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 5 days - Redgrave reigns"

When the Hungarian fencing committee told Aladar Gerevich he was too old to compete at the 1960 Rome Olympics, the 50-year-old had other ideas.

He challenged all the other members of the team, and beat them, to silence the doubters.

Gerevich was not just any fencer, but one who had won six gold medals, one silver and two bronze at the previous five Olympics.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 6 days - Gerevich's gold"

America's Mark Spitz climbs out of the pool after winning the men's 100m butterfly at the 1972 Olympics

Winning two gold medals at an Olympic Games would be a magnificent achievement for almost any athlete but for American swimmer Mark Spitz, it meant a huge disappointment.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 7 days - Chasing Spitz"

Russian gymnast Alexander Dityatin (left) and American swimmer Michael Phelps are the only Olympians to win eight medals at one GamesIn Britain we quite rightly get excited when any of our Olympic athletes wins a medal, be that gold, silver or bronze.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 8 days - Phenomenal Phelps"

American athlete Carl Lewis wins the first of his four Olympic long jump titles at the 1984 Los Angeles Games

If you were asked to name the greatest Olympian of all time, I bet the name Carl Lewis would feature more than any other.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 9 days - King Carl"

America's Ray Ewry winning the standing high jump at the 1908 Olympic Games in London

This countdown aims to be fully interactive so, after three long months of questions to answer, it's time for the physical participation section. Let's hear your best efforts in the now-defunct Olympic sports of standing long jump, standing triple jump and standing high jump.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 10 days - Human frog"

Finland's Alfred Asikainen (left) and Russia's Martin Klein took part in the longest wrestling match in Olympic history in 1912 On Sunday, we looked at the domination of the Finnish distance runners in the early part of the last century. Well, it turns out that running a long way very quickly was not the only event the Finns excelled at in the pre-war years.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 11 days - Great grappling"

Finland's running legend Paavo Nurmi win the Olympic 1500m title at the 1924 Paris OlympicsIn the early part of the 20th Century, Finland dominated distance running with Hannes Kolehmainen starting the gold rush at the 1912 Stockholm Olympics.

Continue reading "Olympic countdown - 12 days - Flying Finns"

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