Jumping to the podium at 6 olympics
Germany's Hans Günter Winkler has the finest record ever of any German show jumper and his overall record internationally is rivaled only by France's Pierre Jonquères d'Oriola and Italy's Raimondo D'Inzeo. Winkler and his horse, Halla, had already won back-to-back world championships in show jumping when they competed at the 1956 Olympics in Stockholm.
During the first round, Halla took off early for the penultimate fence. Winkler was thrown into the air, landed heavily back in the saddle and pulled a groin muscle. He knew that if he withdrew from the final round, the German team would be eliminated. Dizzy and in pain, he rode anyway. Halla completed the course without a fault. They earned gold in both the individual and team events.
Four years later, at the Rome Olympics in 1960, Winkler and Halla led the German team to another victory as Halla became the only horse to win three gold medals. Halla retired, but Winkler went on to take part in four more Olympics, earning a medal in the team jumping event each time: gold in 1964, bronze in 1968, gold again in 1972 and silver in 1976.
Winkler is the only jumper to earn five gold medals, the only jumper to win seven total medals and the only rider in any discipline to earn medals in six different Olympics.