Related Biography: Decathlete Daley Thompson
Daley Thompson is one of the best decathletes in history. Born Francis Ayodele Thompson in London, England in 1958, Thompson was interested in sports and highly competitive from early childhood. He entered his first meet at the age of 14, in 1973, and by 1976, was good enough to make the Olympic team. He came in eighteenth, but gold medal decathlete Bruce Jenner predicted that Thompson would one day win gold in the event.
Jenner was right. Thompson won the gold medal at the 1980 Olympics, held in Moscow, and was prevented from setting a new world record only by foul weather. He did set an Olympic record, with a point total of 8,798, which was not broken until 1996. Thompson won another gold medal at the 1984 Olympics, but his dream of winning three Olympic gold medals was crushed when he broke his pole during the pole vault, injuring his adductor muscle.
After retiring from competition, Thompson continued to work as a coach and trainer.