Daley Thompson

2007 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: Sports and games people

Medal record
Olympic Games
Men’s Athletics
Gold 1980 Moscow Decathlon
Gold 1984 Los Angeles Decathlon
World Championships
Gold 1983 Helsinki Decathlon
European Championships
Silver 1978 Prague Decathlon
Gold 1982 Athens Decathlon
Gold 1986 Stuttgart Decathlon
Commonwealth Games
Gold 1978 Edmonton Decathlon
Gold 1982 Brisbane Decathlon
Gold 1986 Edinburgh Decathlon
Silver 1986 Edinburgh 4x100m

Francis Morgan Thompson, CBE (born July 30, 1958 in Worcester Park), known commonly as Daley Thompson, is a former English decathlete and arguably the greatest the world had ever seen. He is of Nigerian and Scottish heritage.

Thompson won consecutive gold medals at the 1980 and 1984 Olympic Games, and broke the world record for the event four times. His best score in the event was set in the 1984 Olympic competition at 8847 points, a world record that stood for nine years and an Olympic record that stood for twenty years until the Czech athlete Roman Šebrle scored 8893 points in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. He competed for an unprecedented third Olympic decathlon gold at the 1988 Seoul games, but was severely hampered by injury and could only finish fourth. Thompson was the first athlete to simultaneously hold Olympic, Commonwealth, European and World titles in a single event.

His rivalry with German athlete Jürgen Hingsen was legendary in the sport throughout the 1980s. The pair consistently traded world records, but Thompson always had the upper hand in the major events, remaining undefeated in all competitions for nine years between 1979 and 1987.

He was a natural showman who endeared himself to the British public with his irreverent personality, notably when he nervelessly whistled the British national anthem God Save the Queen after receiving his gold medal in 1984. Afterwards, he famously sent a message to friends back home via a TV interview by showing his medal and saying I've got the Big G, boys - the Big G!

Sometimes his behaviour caused offence, not least when he refused to carry the English flag at the opening ceremony of the 1982 Commonwealth Games, claiming that the effort required participating in the four-and-a-half hour ceremony would reduce his chances of winning his event. He won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award the same year. Making his acceptance speech during the live broadcast of the programme Thompson uttered an obscenity, which caused media comment. Despite this, he was awarded the OBE in 1983, followed by a CBE in 2000.

Thompson's name was used for three officially licensed home computer games by Ocean Software in the 1980s: Daley Thompson's Decathlon, Daley Thompson's Supertest, and Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge.

On retirement from athletics in 1992, Thompson had periods of association with various football clubs and also had stints as a television presenter. Thompson now works as a fitness trainer and motivational speaker, as well as appearing at corporate events.

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