Jan Zelezny is the only man to have won three javelin gold medals in Olympic history.
Jan Zelezny was the world record holder in the javelin and favourite for the gold medal at the 1988 Seoul Games. Initially, everything went to plan. He set an Olympic record in the qualifying round and led throughout the final. However Tapio Korjus of Finland beat him by just 16 centimetres to claim the gold medal with the very last throw in the competition.
Olympic successAt the 1992 Barcelona Games, Zelezny went one better. He won the gold medal with his first throw of the final, breaking his own Olympic record by 3.76m. Four years later in Atlanta, Steve Backley of Great Britain took the early lead in the final but Zelezny overtook him to claim the gold medal.
Unique trebleAt the 2000 Sydney Games, Steve Backley proved again to be Zelezny’s main rival, but once more Zelezny produced his best when it mattered. He set a new Olympic record to beat Backley and emerge triumphant. This made him the only javelin thrower in Olympic history to win three gold medals and four total medals.