Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now



Ironmen – Elite and Everyday 1

Posted on August 08, 2013 by Daniel Lofthouse
Chrissie Wellington has developed into a record-setting triathlete.

Chrissie Wellington has developed into a record-setting triathlete.

In the past, feats including marathon and triathlon were accolades only a few could boast. Only the elite were understood to have the natural capability and mental strength for such challenges. Today, this notion is all but eroded. Today, ‘ordinary’ athletes train around family and professional commitments to not only complete, but to race in prestigious events. Regular people have a thirst for ambition and continue to push personal and industry boundaries.

The Ironman Triathlon, for example, is a pursuit that is growing in availability, and popularity, against all odds. The 2.4-mile swim, followed by 112-mile bike ride culminating in a marathon distance run is a daunting prospect for even the fittest of athletes.  In its infancy, the event wasn’t wholly competitive, more a quest for survival. The achievement was simply to finish within the stated time. It was the intense rivalry between Dave Scott and Mark Allen that catapulted the legendary Kona Ironman from test to race, in 1989.

Another personality making Ironman history is world- champion, Chrissie Wellington, who is the only triathlete- male or female- to have won the Ironman TriathlonWorld Championship less than a year after turning professional. Formerly a marathon runner with little background in endurance, Chrissie Welllington went on too lower the world record every time she raced the triathlon Challenge Roth in Germany. Read the rest of this entry →

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      Archie Griffin

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is the only football player ever to capture college football’s top individual award twice.

      As a star running back for the Ohio State Buckeyes, Archie Griffin claimed the Heisman Trophy during his junior season in 1974 and then was able to repeat the honor the following season.

      Griffin joined the Buckeyes for the 1972 season, which happened to be the first in which freshmen were eligible to play varsity football, and made an immediate impact. After fumbling in his only carry of his first game, Griffin more than made up for it in his second game by rushing for 237 yards against North Carolina. By the end of the season, Griffin had rushed for 867 yards.

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