In this post, we will check out the top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
Swimming is one of the exciting sports around the world. This article is all about the top 10 greatest swimmers of all time. If you are reading the post it means you are a lover of swimming.
We will gonna outline the top 10 swimmers in the history of the game. There are various idols and legends in the field of swimming, so we chose to compile the top ten swimmers of all time.
Compiling the top 10 list of the greatest swimmers of all time is not an easy task. However we have combined stats, figures to stand out as the greatest swimmers of all time.
There are some superstars of the game who changed the sport completely with their performance over the years in the field of swimming. So let’s go ahead and check out the top 10 greatest swimmers of all time in the history of the sport.
Top 10 Greatest Swimmers Of All Time
1 Michael Phelps
Michael Phelps is referred to as the “GOAT” in swimming. He is a former American swimmer and the most decorated Olympian of all time. Nobody comes close to his tally of medals in the Olympics(28). Phelps also holds the all-time record for Olympic gold medals which is 23.
His tally of 8 gold medals in the 2008 Beijing Games, broke Mark Spitz’s 1972 record of seven at single Olympic Games. His international titles and world record performances have made him the recipient of the World Swimmer of the Year Award six times and the American Swimmer of the Year Award eight times.
Phelps is the long course world record holder in the men’s 400-meter individual medley and former long course world record holder in the 200-meter freestyle, 100-meter butterfly, 200-meter butterfly, and 200-meter individual medley.
Phelps received Sports Illustrated magazine’s Sportsman of the Year award due to his Olympic achievement in the 2008 Games. He is widely known as the greatest swimmer of all time.
2 Mark Spitz
Mark Spitz is a former American swimmer and nine-time Olympic champion. He was the most thriving athlete at the 1972 Summer Olympics which was held in Munich. He won a total of seven gold medals, that too in a world record time. A record that has not been matched since.
This feat lasted for more than 36 years which finally broken by another American named Michael Phelps. He won eight golds at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
Between 1968 and 1972, Spitz was undefeatable and won a total of nine Olympic golds, a silver, and a bronze. During those years, he set 33 world records in Swimming, which is quite impressive. World Magazine selected him World Swimmer of the Year in 1969, 1971, and 1972.
He is one of the only five Olympians who have won 9 or more gold medals at the Games. He is number 2 in our list of top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
3 Matt Biondi
Matt Biondi is a former American champions swimmer, eleven-time Olympic medalist, and former world record-holder in five different events. Biondi contested in the Summer Olympic Games which includes 1984, 1988, and 1992, winning a total of eleven medals (eight gold, two silver, and one bronze).
During his career, he set three individual world records in the 50-meter freestyle and four in the 100-meter freestyle. At the 1988 Olympic Games, a Seoul storm set up by Biondi. He won a total of five gold medals and setting up world records in the 50-meter freestyle and three relay events.
Biondi is selected as a member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the United States Olympic Hall of Fame. Matt had a total count of 11 Olympic medals which includes three different editions(8 golds, 2 silvers, and 1 bronze).
He’s the most dominant swimmer in the 1984, 1988, and 1992 games. He is number 3 in our list of top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
4 Ian Thorpe
Ian Thorpe is an Australian retired swimmer and one of the most famous athletes of Australia. He specialized in freestyle, but also raced in backstroke and the individual medley. He has won five Olympic gold medals, which is the most by any Australian to date.
At the age of 14, Thorpe became the youngest male ever to represent Australia. His triumph in the 400-meter freestyle at the 1998 Perth World Championships earned him the youngest-ever individual male World Champion. He also became the first swimmer to win six gold medals in a particular World Championship.
Thorpe is known for the nickname “Thorpedo” because of his pace in swimming. He was the first person to have been identified as the World Swimmer of the Year four times and the Australian Swimmer of the Year from 1999 to 2003. His accomplishments and his performance in Olympics made him one of Australia’s most popular athletes.
It would not be wrong to say that Ian Thorpe is one of the greatest swimmers in the history of the Olympics. Thorpe is number 4 in our list of top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
5 Dara Torres
Dara Torres is a former American swimmer. She is a 12-time Olympic medalist and holds a world record in three events during her career. Torres is the first swimmer to serve the United States in five different Olympic Games which include 1984, 1988, 1992, 2000, and 2008.
She also became the oldest swimmer at the age of 41 to represent the U.S. in Olympics. She broke the record held by Britain’s William Robinson to become the oldest swimmer to win a medal at the Olympic Games.
Torres won the silver for all the events that she participated in(50m freestyle, 4×100m medley relay, and 4×100m freestyle relay). Torres clinched a total of five medals at the 2000 Summer Olympics. She is also a swimmer who won at least one medal in every Olympics that she participated in throughout her career.
Torres is one of the most renowned swimmers in the history of the Olympics. She was named one of the “Top Female Athletes of the Decade” by Sports Illustrated. She is number 5 in our list of top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
6 Natalie Coughlin
Natalie Coughlin is an American competition swimmer and twelve-time Olympic medalist. She became the first woman ever to swim the 100-meter backstroke (long course) in less than one minute.
Her grew to stardom started when she became the first U.S. female athlete in Olympic history to win six medals in one Olympiad. She has achieved that in the 2008 Summer Olympics. She also became the first woman ever to win a 100-meter backstroke gold in two consecutive Olympics.
In the 2012 Summer Olympics, she won a bronze medal in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay. Coughlin’s performance over the years helped her to win the World Swimmer of the Year Award once and the American Swimmer of the Year Award thrice during her career.
Her medal count shows the level of excellence in the field of swimming. She had a total of sixty medals in major international competitions which includes twenty-five gold, twenty-two silver, and thirteen bronze fording the Olympics, the World, and the Pan American Games.
With a total of 12 Olympic medals, Coughlin is drawn with the swimmers like Dara Torres and Jenny Thompson for the most-decorated female American Olympians.
7 Janet Evans
Janet Beth Evans is an American swimmer who trained in distance freestyle events. Evans was one of the best swimmers, world champion, and world record-holder. She had a total of four gold medals at the 1988 and the 1992 Olympics.
It was all started in 1987, when she broke the world records in the 400-meter, 800-meter, and 1,500-meter freestyle distances. At the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, she excelled in her performance and won three individual gold medals.
In Seoul, Janet won the gold in the 400m medley and 800m freestyle, which she successfully defended after four years in Barcelona. She became the first female swimmer to win back-to-back Olympic golds in any event.
At the end of Evans’s swimming career, she held a total of seven world records, five Olympic medals, and 45 American national titles. She is number 7 in our list of top 10 greatest swimmers of all time.
8 Ryan Lochte
Ryan Lochte is an American swimmer and 12-time Olympic medalist. He is the second-most decorated swimmer in Olympic history just behind the great Michael Phelps. He currently holds the world records in the 200-meter individual medley (long and short course).
As a member of the American teams, he also holds the world record in the 4×200-meter freestyle (long course) and 4×100-meter freestyle (mixed) relay.
There is no denying the fact that Lochte is one of the best swimmers in the history of the game. He is also the current world record holder in 100-metre, 200-metre, and 400-meter individual medleys.
Lochte’s performance has earned him SwimSwam’s Swammy Award for U.S. Male Swimmer of the Year in 2013, the World Swimmer of the Year Award, and the American Swimmer of the Year Award twice.
His seven individual Olympic medals helped him to be in the number 2 spot in the history of men’s swimming. Lochte has a total collection of 12 Olympic medals which includes 6 Golds, 3 silver, and 3 bronze.
9 Kristin Otto
Kristin Otto is a German swimming sensation of her time. She is one of the most dominating swimmers and one of the first women to win six gold medals at a single Olympic Games. She had achieved that at the 1988 Seoul Olympic games.
At the 1986 World Championships in Madrid, Otto won 4 gold medals which include 100 m freestyle, 200 m individual medley, 4×100 m medley relay, and 4×100 m freestyle relay, and 2 silver medals (50 m freestyle, 100 m butterfly). Her domination continued at the 1987 European Championships where she won 5 gold medals.
She was also selected as the Female World Swimmer of the Year in 1984, 1986, and 1988 by Swimming World magazine.
Otto established a new world record in each of her major events which include 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 100m backstroke, and 100m butterfly events, before retiring from swimming in 1989.
10 Johnny Weissmuller
Johnny Weissmuller was the American best swimmer of his time. Weissmuller was popularly known for his best swimming records of the 20th century. He had many world records including winning 5 gold medals in the Olympics.
He accomplished the 100m freestyle, 4x200m relay team event in 1924 at the Paris Games, furthermore again in 1928 at the Amsterdam Games.
Weissmuller had won a total of five Olympic gold medals and one bronze medal. He also won 52 US National Championships and produced 67 world records. Apart from his swimming career, he was also a dominating name as an actor.
He had portrayed an iconic Tarzan character in films. He still the best actor to play the role of Tarzan when comparing with the other actors around the world.
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Top 10 Athletics World Records
In this post, we will check out the top 10 athletics most remarkable world records.
We know that records are meant to be broken but there are some remarkable records in athletics that will make you say wow.
Some of the best athletics world records are still unbroken which was set in a different era. While on the other side some athletes have gone beyond the physical limits of their bodies. There are some magnificent records that are completely beyond the human limit.
In this article, we will check out the top 10 athletics impressive world records which required a test of time to breaking them.
- Top 10 Athletics World Records
- 1 400m Unbreakable Record(Women)
- 2 Discus Throw
- 3 Highest Point Achieved In Heptathlon
- 4 Men Long Jump Record Is Here To Stay
- 5 30000 m Walk
- 6 Kevin Young Know How To Remove Hurdles From Life
- 7 4*400 m Relay
- 8 High Jump Record That Still Going High
- 9 Triple Jump
- 10 Lightning Doesn’t Strike Twice(Usain Bolt World Record)
- The Other 3 Athletics Impressive World Records
Top 10 Athletics World Records
1 400m Unbreakable Record(Women)
Koch set the track and field event on fire when he broke the 400 m world record in just 47.60 seconds. The event was held on 6 October 1985 at the year’s World Cup meet. It’s just unbelievable to know the timing was yet to be beaten in 2021. Such a commanding performance from Marita Koch. It is said to be one of the most impactful performances in the history of athletics.
At the halfway point in the race, she had complete control over the race, nobody is close to him. The only women in history to broke the 48-second barrier are Koch and Jarmila Kratochvílová. Jarmila has clocked 47.99 seconds in Helsinki, 1983. Kratochvílová and Koch’s are said to be the rivals as they are the top class runners in the same events i.e 400m. Each of them frequently beat the 400 m world record set by the other. Until today no other women have even clocked below 48 seconds. It is something that may not be repeated again.
2 Discus Throw
Jürgen Schult is a German track and field athlete who is also the world record holder in the discus throw. His records are still going strong which he was holding since 1986. It is said to be the longest standing record in men’s track and field. Schult symbolized East Germany in the 1988 Olympic competition in which he won the gold medal for discus throw which was held on 1 October 1988.
While representing the East German program, his throw of 74.08 meters (243.0 ft) broke the previous record which was set by the Soviet athlete, Yuriy Dumchev(71.86 meters (235.8 ft)). An interesting fact is the discus world record set by Schult still stands today and is the longest-standing men’s world record ever beating the likes of Jesse Owens’s long jump record, which stood for almost 25 years and 79 days.
He later competed in a second Olympic Games in 1992, in which he won the silver medal. His last appearance in the Olympics is in 2000 when he was at an age of 40, finishing in 8th place.
3 Highest Point Achieved In Heptathlon
Heptathlon unites seven athletics events, in which the points are granted based on measures and times achieved. Joyner-Kersee still holds the world record in Heptathlon which was has held on July 7, 1986. She became the first woman to excel at 7000 points. She scored 7148 in Moscow.
Joyner-Kersee set the heptathlon world record (7,291) for the fourth time when she won the gold medal at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul. In the 1992 Olympics held in Barcelona, she became the leading athlete to win the heptathlon in back-to-back Olympic Games.
Joyner-Kersee’s dominancy in the event is just unbelievable as she owns the top six heptathlon scores all-time. Such supremacy does this athlete hold.
4 Men Long Jump Record Is Here To Stay
It was looking just impossible for anyone to break Bob Beamon’s long jump record and then Lewis and Powell came and changed everything. Their clash on August 30, 1991, said to be the biggest competition in long jump history. Earlier there is no one who had affected Bob Beamon’s long jump record of 8.90 meters that he had established in Mexico City in 1968.
At the world championship final in Tokyo, Carl Lewis and Mike Powell are going head to head for the gold medal. First Lewis broke the world record by jumping 8.91 meters on his fourth attempt, while Powell followed him and established a new record of 8.95 meters in his fifth attempt. Since 1991 multiple athletes tried to break the long jump record but nobody has succeeded to do it. It is said to be one of the finest performances in track and field history.
5 30000 m Walk
Maurizio Damilano one of the greatest walkers the world has ever seen. He won 15 medals individually (22 in team events), at the International athletics competitions.
Damilano was the Olympic Champion in 1980 and world champions in 1987 and 1991 in a 20 km race walk. He has 60 caps in the national team from 1977 to 1992 which shows the longevity of this athlete.
Damilano’s most impressive record is the 30 km race walk in which he is the world record holder to date. He created the world record and clocked a timing of 2:01:44.1 which is something nobody comes close to. He achieved this feat in Cuneo in 1992.
6 Kevin Young Know How To Remove Hurdles From Life
Kevin C. Young is a former American athlete. He was the world record holder in 400 meters hurdles which was held at the 1992 Summer Olympics. Kevin set a world record of 46.78 seconds in the finals which remains unbeaten to date. He was the first 400m hurdler to clock a time under 47 seconds.
He had an exceptional hurdling technique of shifting between 12 and 13 strides between the hurdles. Young’s performances weakened after 1993. He was enlisted into the National Track & Field Hall of Fame in 2006.
The athlete who comes closest to his time is Norwegian Karsten Warholm when he clocked 46.87 seconds in the same event.
7 4*400 m Relay
4*400 m relay is one of the exciting events in the Olympics. The 4 × 400 meters relay is an athletics track event in which teams consist of four runners, each has to complete 400 meters or one lap. It is said to be the final event of a track meet.
In the event, runners carry a relay baton which they have to transfer between teammates. Runners have been provided with a 20 m box in which the transfer process completes. The world record in the 4*400 m relay belongs to the USA team. The event was held at Stuttgart.
Andrew Valmon, Quincy Watts, Butch Reynolds, and Michael Johnson are the athlete who secured the gold for the USA. Michael Johnson was too good for the event and helped the team to snatch another gold medal for the USA. The timing clocked at the event was 2:54.29 which is yet to be beaten by the others as no team comes close to the timing set by the USA runners.
8 High Jump Record That Still Going High
Javier Sotomayor is a renowned name in the world of athletics. His event in high jump broke the world record in July 1993 in Salamanca. Sotomayor extended his world record twice in his career. The first came on July 29, 1989, in the Central American and Caribbean Championships when he jumped to 2.44 meters (8 feet), and the second one came on July 27, 1993, in Salamanca when he jumped to 2.45 m (8 feet and one-half inch). Sotomayor is the first athlete to jump over 8 feet.
It is said to be one of the most remarkable jumps in the sense that Sotomayor required only four jumps to get the job done. He took his first jump at 2.32 meters (7 ft 7.34 in), easily crossed 2.35 and 2.38 meters (7 ft 9.70 in) on his first attempt, then the level of the bar raised to a record height of 2.45, which he narrowly missed on his first attempt but later he succeeded on his second attempt and created the world record which is yet to be broken.
9 Triple Jump
Jonathan David Edwards is a British former triple jumper and a world record holder in Triple Jump. His dominance for his event can be seen as he is an Olympic, world, and European champion as well.
It was On July 18, 1995, when Edwards created the world record beating mark of 17.97 meters which was previously held by American Willie Banks. He later broke his own world record twice and shown world supremacy in his event.
Edwards became the first triple jumper to surpass 18 meters barrier, bouncing 18.16 in his very first attempt in the final at the world championship which was held in Sweden. He did the impossible in the second attempt setting the world record marking at 18.29 meters. His second jump of 18.29 m made him the first athlete to jump 60 feet. It’s something that no one has achieved to date.
10 Lightning Doesn’t Strike Twice(Usain Bolt World Record)
Lightning doesn’t strike twice and it’d truly said as it’s just impossible to match the timing of the fastest man on the planet. It’s just impossible to finish the list without mentioning the great Usain Bolt. Bolt holds the world records in both 100 meters (9.58 seconds) and 200 meters (19.19 seconds). It’s safe to say breaking his records requires a lot of hard work and dedication.
Usain Bolt is widely regarded to be the greatest sprinter of all time. He is an eight-time Olympic gold medallist. Usain Bolt is the only sprinter in the history of the Olympics to win 100 m and 200 m titles at three consecutive Olympics (2008, 2012, and 2016).
It’s impossible to replicate his achievements as a sprinter. His accomplishment has earned him the name “Lightning Bolt”.
The Other 3 Athletics Impressive World Records
Daniel Kipngetich Komen is a Kenyan athlete who is widely regarded as the best in middle- and long-distance running.
He is the world record holder in 3000 meters both outdoors (7:20.67 set in 1996) and indoors (7:24.90 set in 1998). Komen also set another world record later in 1997 in an event named 2-mile race set with an incredible timing of 7.58.61. He is the only athlete in the history to run back-to-back sub-four-minute miles, in which he clocked the timing of 3:59.4 on both the first and second half of the race. That’s something commendable, his world record in 3000 m is still to be broken.
2 4*100 m Relay World Record That Erased The History
The 4 × 100 meters relay is an event in which athletes run in lanes over one lap of the track with four runners performing 100 meters each. A relay baton is carried by each runner and if someone drops it during the run the team will be disqualified. Before 2018, it necessary to pass the baton within a 20 m changeover box.
This event has been dominated by the United States men and women winning the most Olympic gold medals and the most IAAF world championships. Currently, the women’s world record in the 4*100 m relay stands at 40.82 seconds which was set by the United States women in 2012 at the London Olympics.
The Team USA leads by the runners Tianna Madison, Allyson Felix, Bianca Knight, and Carmelita Jeter. It was one of a remarkable feat as they have broken the previous record which was dated back to October 6, 1985.
3 Record Breaker in Marathon
Eliud Kipchoge is a Kenyan athlete renowned as a long-distance runner. His highlight event is the marathon however previously he also competed at the 5000-meter distance. He is currently the world record holder in the marathon with an unbreakable timing of 2:01:39 which he set on 16 September 2018 in Berlin. He has been characterized as “the greatest marathoner of the modern era”.
On 12 October 2019, Kipchoge also ran at a special event in Vienna, Austria in 2019, where he clocked a timing of 1:59:40. However, the run did not include a new marathon record, as standard competition rules do not apply like pacing and fluids were not followed. It’s no denying the fact that he will remain as the greatest runner in the history of Marathons.
Top 8 Olympic records that will never be broken
Olympics is the grandest stage of sports events. In this post, we will check out the top 8 Olympic records that will never be broken again.
The Olympic Games include almost all major sports events from around the world. Athletes represent their country and come together to battle for domination. Players from around the world compete in their respective sport, and the best three will earn the top recognition and presented with the medal for their country. It’s all about the best against the best at the biggest stage.
There have been some extra ordinary performance and some unbreakable records at the Olympics which is still not broken since its inception.
Here we will talk about top eight Olympic records that will never be matched or broken.
- 1 Michael Phelps 23 gold medals
- 2 Bob Beamon’s 29 feet and 2 1/2-inch long jump
- 3 Florence Griffith-Joyner’s 10.62-second 100-meter dash
- 4 10 Olympic appearances by Ian Millar
- 5 China’s table tennis tally of 53 medals, including 28 golds
- 6 Nadia Comaneci perfect 10
- 7 America’s scooping 239-medal at 1904 Games
- 8 13-year-old U.S. diver Marjorie Gestring wins gold
1 Michael Phelps 23 gold medals
Michael Phelps needs no introduction here. He is the most dominant athlete in the history of the Olympics. Phelps is the most decorated Olympian ever thanks to his unbreakable tally of 23 gold medals.
The Olympian who comes close to the phenomenal tally of Phelps is Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina, who racked up a total of nine gold medals for the Soviets in the 1950s and 1960s. She has a total of 18 medals comparing to Phelps’ 28 Olympic medals. So personally I feel the only person who can break Phelps’ gold medal tally is Phelps himself.
The interesting fact about Michael Phelps is that he has more Olympic gold medals than the 66 countries including Argentina, Iran, Croatia, India, Indonesia, Egypt, and many more in their history.
Phelps has twenty-three gold medals and overall 28 Olympic medals in four Olympics. That’s almost six golds per Olympics. It’s just insane stuff. It is one of those Olympic records that will never be broken again.
2 Bob Beamon’s 29 feet and 2 1/2-inch long jump
Bob Beamon could be said the goat of the long jump. At the 1968 Olympics Beamon jumped an unpredictable 29 feet and 2 ½ inches, which created a new Olympic record. Almost Fifty years passed and Beamon still holds that Olympic record. Though the record was broken further by Mike Powell in World Championships Athletics in Tokyo 1991 but it was not an Olympic record.
Beamon jump was so insane that measuring equipment failed to measure as it was felling short. Even that jump makes Beamon stunned but he knows the officials will find a way to measure as it was long.
3 Florence Griffith-Joyner’s 10.62-second 100-meter dash
Florence Griffith-Joyner created the Olympic record in 1988 by running the 100m in 10.62 seconds. It was still an Olympic record which stood still since 1988. The record was later broken by multiple women but none has done it in the Olympics.
Griffith-Joyner broke the world and Olympic record in 1988 in a 200m event as well. Her time of 21.34 also seemed to be unbroken and it stood for almost 30 years. She still holds two Olympic records for running in the women category.
The next closest bid for the women’s 100-meter Olympic throne came from America’s Carmelita Jater who ran 10.67 in the world athletics final in 2011.
4 10 Olympic appearances by Ian Millar
Ian Millar has an Olympic record to his name and that happens by appearing at 10 Summer Games. He could have made it 11 in 2016 if his horse was not injured.
Millar’s first appearance at the Olympics was in 1972 Berlin, and his final appearance came in 2012 in London. Millar’s closest competitors were just one appearance behind him. Ian Millar’s record is unlikely to be broken again.
There are only two Olympians who have made it nine appearances in Olympics – Austrian sailor Hubert Raudaschl and Latvian shooter Afanasijs Kuzmin’s.
However till date Ian Miller have won just a single medal that was silver in 2008.
5 China’s table tennis tally of 53 medals, including 28 golds
China is the most dominant country in table tennis. No country will equal the tally of medals in table tennis other than China. Anybody who follows the Olympic Games probably has noticed that the Chinese are outstanding at table tennis. China has been the most flourishing nation in Olympic table tennis, winning 53 medals (28 gold, 17 silver, and 8 bronze). The interesting fact is Chinese players have won at least one medal in every event since 1992.
Their closest rival is South Korea who has a total of 18 medals in table tennis. Another interesting fact that there are only four non-Chinese players who have succeeded to win gold medals in the Olympics to date. This is complete domination from Chinese players.
Thus it seems impossible for another country to overtake them in their overall tally.
6 Nadia Comaneci perfect 10
The Olympics had never seen any perfect routine in their history. It was just an impossible feat to achieve. Comaneci is finally done that the 1976 Olympics in Montreal. It was so perfect that the scoreboards were unable to demonstrate it.
The gymnast had scored 10.00 from all the judges which were completely unbelievable to watch. As it did not happen before the equipment failed to display it. She does not only broke the record and she had gone further and did it a total of six times. She won three gold medals for his breathtaking performance. People say nobody is perfect but the Comaneci routine was completely perfect and not to be broken again, they can only tie with it.
7 America’s scooping 239-medal at 1904 Games
The U.S. has always been a big contender on any sports event at the Olympics. The U.S is at the top of the table in the all-time medal list with 2,523. Russia is on second with a total tally of 1556 medals. The gap shows the dominance of the U.S at the Olympics. At the 1904 Olympics, Team USA created an Olympic record of winning a total of 239 more than most countries have accomplished in their existence.
The games were held on home turf for Americans, and the home support helped the athletes to show such an outstanding performance which was not repeated again in the history of Olympics. They won 78 golds, 82 silvers, and 79 bronze. The country who came closest to challenge that record is the Soviet Union in 1980 with 195 medals.
This record still stands tall and will never be broken again.
8 13-year-old U.S. diver Marjorie Gestring wins gold
American diver Marjorie Gestring was just Thirteen years old when she won gold in the three-meter springboard. She did that incredible stuff in front of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. Competing at the highest level and that too at a very young age is simply astonishing.
We will not see anything in the future as the Olympics become more competitive now and this record will intact forever in the history of the Olympics.
It is one of the outstanding Olympic records that will never be broken again.
Top 10 Greatest Sprinters of all time
Sprinting is the most difficult track and field event in the Olympics. We have seen some great runners in the history of the game. Here we will talk about the greatest male sprinters of all time.
These athletes run could make you awestruck. They have made their name into the history books with their insane sprinting and become the legends of the sport.
Let’s check this ultimate guide to reveal the top 10 greatest male sprinters of all time in terms of medals, timing, and all-time world records.
10 Justin Gatlin
Justin Gatlin is one of the best American sprinters of all time. He’s one of the path-breaking achievements is when he clocked 9.85-second in the 2004 Olympic game to win the 100 m event. He also won silver in the relay and bronze in 200m in the same Olympics.
However, just after 2 years, Gatlin’s career got stuck with a four-year ban in 2006. Gatlin tested positive for a banned substance. Gatlin began competing again in August 2010. In May 2015 at the IAAF Doha Diamond League, Gatlin broke his own 100m record becoming the only athlete age more than 30 to clock 9.74 seconds. He became the fastest athlete in his thirties for a 100 m event. Gatlin got silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics to become the oldest man to achieve an Olympic medal in a non-relay sprint event. Justin Gatlin can reach an insane speed of 28 mph. He is number 10 on our list of greatest sprinters of all time.
- 1 Olympic gold and 3 World Championship golds
- 60m: 6.45-currently 5th all time (Boston 2005)
- 100m: 9.74-currently 5th all time (London 2012)
- 200m: 19.57 (Starkville 2002)
9 Donovan Bailey
He is known as the greatest Canadian sprinter of all-time. His moment of life came when he clocked a time of 9.84 seconds to claim the gold medal at the 1996 Olympic Games. He was the first Canadian sprinter to be recorded under 10-second in the 100 m. He is the most popular athlete well known for his top speed. This record stood strong for almost 12 years and then came Usain Bolt in the 2008 Beijing Games and broke the record.
The interesting fact about this athlete he even overcame the best sprinter of all time Michael Johnson in a 150m race in 1997. Donovan Bailey was so strong, he injured Michael Johnson’s motivation. For his great contribution to the sport, Bailey has been inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.
8 Yohan Blake
Yohan Blake is the second fastest man ever in both 100 m and 200 m after Usain Bolt. He became the youngest athlete to be a world champion in the 100m event at the 2011 World Championships. Blake also got his hand on a silver medal in the 2012 Olympic Games in London in the 100 m and 200 m races.
Yohan Blake has said to be the next Usain Bolt. His personal best for the 200 m (19.26 seconds) is the second-fastest time ever after the great sprinter Usain Bolt (19.19 seconds). It has to be noticed that his reaction time on that particular race was relatively slow (0.269 s), with an average start. If he could have done it better he would have set a new world record Four years later in Rio. So If Bolt never existed Blake would be the fastest man of all time. Blake is number 8 on our list of greatest sprinters of all time.
- 1 Olympic gold (2 silvers) and 2 World Championship golds
- 60 m: 6.75 (New York 2008)
- 100 m: 9.69- currently 2nd all time (Kingston 2012)
- 200 m: 19.26- currently 2nd all time (Brussels 2011)
- 4 x 100 m relay: 36.84-current world record (London 2012)
7 Asafa Powell
Asafa Powell is one of the breakthrough performers and the athlete who is well known to set the foundation of Jamaican in the greatest stage of the world. He set the world record twice in 100 meters between June 2005 and May 2008 with speed recorded of 9.77 and 9.74 seconds respectively. His personal best timing in 100m in 9.72 seconds. Powell also holds an interesting record of consistently broken the 10-second barrier in the history of the sport(97 times).
His first medal in 4 x 100 meters relay in Beijing Games had to be surrendered due to his partner Nesta carter failed in a drug test. Later At the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, he won a gold medal in the same event i.e 4 x 100 meters relay.
- 1 Olympic gold and 2 World Championship golds
- 100 m: 9.72-currently 3rd all time (Lausanne 2008)
- 200 m: 19.90 (Kingston 2006)
- 400 m: 45.94 (Sydney 2009)
6 Maurice Greene
Maurice Greene is an American former track and field sprinter who broke the 100m world record in 1999. He became the first athlete in the world to clock timing of fewer than 9.8 seconds. Maurice is a former 100 m world record holder with a time of 9.79 seconds which is completely unbreakable at that time.
Maurice was also crowned as the world champion thrice in his career in 1997, 1999, and 2001 in the 100m event. Greene was equally thriving indoors – he was the 1999 Indoor World Champion, holding the world record in 60m dashes for nearly 20 years. He also remains the joint-fastest sprinter in 50 meters event. After getting an injury in 2005 he unable to make a comeback and officially retired in 2008. He changed the sprinting style. He is number 6 in our list of greatest sprinters of all time.
- 2 Olympic golds and 5 World Championship golds
- 60 m: 6.39-current world record (Madrid 1998 and Atlanta 2001)
- 100 m: 9.79 (Athens 1999)
- 200 m: 19.86 (Stockholm 1997)
5 Tyson gay
Tyson Gay is widely referred to as one of the best sprinters of his time. His 100 m personal best of 9.69 is the second fastest along with Yohan Blake and just behind Usain Bolt world record of 9.58.
Gay has won various medals in global major international competitions. He had won a gold medal in 100 m, 200 m, and 4 × 100 m relay at the 2007 Osaka World Championships. Gay equaled the feat of Maurice Greene, becoming the second man to win all three events at the same World Championships.
Another unprecedented record that Gay holds is that he is the only sprinter to record timing of 100 meters in under 10 seconds, the 200 meters in under 20 seconds, and the 400 meters in under 45 seconds. He is also the only man to ever beat bolt in a final.
- 1 Olympic silver and 3 World Championship golds
- 100 m: 9.69-currently 2nd all time (Shanghai 2009)
- 200 m: 19.58- currently 5th all time (New York 2009)
- 400 m: 44.89 (Gainesville 2010)
4 Michael Johnson
Michael Johnson needs no introduction. He is one of the most consistent and admirable track and field athletes of all time. Johnson formerly held the world record in 200 m which was later broken by Usain Bolt. He also the former record holder in 400 m which was broken after 17 years in Rio Olympics 2016 by Van Niekerk.
Johnson is the only male athlete to won both the 200m and 400m at the same Olympic Games held in Atlanta. He is first sprinter to defend his 400m title in the 2000 summer Olympics in Sydney. Johnson Still holds 12/20 best times ever in the 400m event.
Johnson was just way ahead of anyone else, his shocking leaning back style still amazes a lot of fans around the world. Bolt clearly has a huge physical stature but Johnson’s secret was and still remains amazingly a total mystery. Johnson is on number 4 in our list of greatest sprinters of all time.
- 4 Olympic golds and 8 World Championship golds
- 100 m: 10.09 (Knoxville 1994)
- 200 m: 19.32-currently 3rd all time (Atlanta 1996)
- 400 m: 43.18-currently 2nd all time (Sevilla 1999)
3 Jesse Owens
Jesse Owens without a doubt one of the greatest athletes of all time. He was the most talked-about athlete of all time. He won four gold medals in the 1936 Olympic Games. Despite having odd tracks, no proper training facilities, and lack of equipment, Owens ran the 100m in 10.3 seconds and the 200m in 20.7 seconds which is completely astonishing.
What he achieved at a time with very limited track technology and training is exceptional. If he had an advanced training and dieting program, he could probably be a contender in the world’s first heat. If Jesse Owens competed today with the modern athletes, He would be the star in this era as well.
Owen’s achievement in the 1936 Olympics is the single most inclusive event in Olympic History.
- 3 Olympic golds
- 100 m: 10.2 (Berlin 1936)
- 200 m: 21.1 (Berlin 1936)
2 Carl Lewis
Carl Lewis is known as the best track and field athlete of all time. He won nine Olympic gold medals, and one Olympic silver medal. Carl Lewis not only held world records in 100 metres, 200 metres and 4×100 metres relay but he also a world record holder in the long jump. He is one of only three Olympic athletes in the world who won a gold medal in the same individual event in four consecutive Olympic Games.
He held the world records in the major events including 100 m, 4 × 100 m, and 4 × 200 m relays. The interesting fact is that he also had a world record in the indoor long jump which was still unbroken since 1984. He had completely outperformed everyone in the long jump. He had won 65 consecutive long jump events over a span of 10 years. This is one of the sport’s greatest and undefeated streaks of all time. He was named as ‘World Athlete of the Century’, ‘Sportsman of the Century’ by various sports organizations.
Carl Lewis will be remembered as one of the most dominant athlete in track & field in Olympic history.
- 6 Olympic golds and 6 World Championship golds
- 100 m: 9.86 (Tokyo 1991)
- 200 m: 19.75 (TAC/Mobile Championships 1983)
- 4 x 100 m relay: 37.40 (Barcelona 1992)
1 Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt is a Jamaican former sprinter, widely considered to be the greatest sprinter of all time. He currently holds the world record in the 100 metres, 200 metres and 4 × 100 metres relay. Bolt is the only sprinter in the world to win 100 m and 200 m titles in three editions of Olympics (2008, 2012 and 2016). He also claimed two gold medals in 4 × 100 relays.
Bolt can be said the greatest of all time in the history of the sport. Bolt is the most impressive athlete winning four World Championship titles in the 200 m and is one of the most impactful sprinters in the 100 m with three titles.
Bolt’s broken the 100m world record twice and the world record now stands at 9.58s. He has also broken the 200 m world record which was previously named after Michael Johnson that now stands to 19.19s to Bolt. His accomplishments as a sprinter have acquired him the nickname “Lightning Bolt”
- 8 Olympic golds and 11 World Championship golds
- 100 m: 9.58-current world record (Berlin 2009)
- 200 m: 19.19-current world record (Berlin 2009)
- 400 m: 45.28 (Kingston 2007)
- 4 x 100 m relay: 36.84-current world record (London 2012)