Every four years the sporting world stops and turns its attention to the greatest sporting event on the planet. For the huge majority of athletes taking part in the Olympics it is the pinnacle of their careers, the culmination of four years training and preparation.
An Olympian is anyone who is taking part in this multi sport event and we are posing the question, who is the Greatest Olympian of all time? Our hand picked shortlist celebrates sporting excellence from many different decades and disciplines. Athletics, gymnastics and boxing as well as sports involving water such as swimming, rowing and sailing feature within this list, many different sports. One thing these competitors have in common is they have all reached the highest level, all claiming it least one gold medal at the summer Olympics.
Athletes such as Usain Bolt is undisputedly a great Olympian but even the fastest man on Earth will not compete and win in his many Olympias than Steve Redgrave, nor win as many goals as swimmers, Michael Phelps or Mark Spitz. Nadia Comăneci became the first gymnast to achieve a perfect score, a feat that was thought to be impossible, indeed the scoreboard in the arena could not display a total that big. Athlete Jesse Owens and boxer Cassius Clay, later Mohammed Ali, became symbols of social change which went beyond the sport itself, could they become your pick for greatest Olympian?
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