PARIS, June 09, 2008 (AFP) – Each Olympics brings out some memorable emotional moments and Beijing should not be any different. Here, AFP Sports picks out a selection of several of the outstanding memories: LONDON 1908 – The marathon that was not elementary
John Hayes is one of the few winners of the Olympic marathon who languishes in obscurity. Italy’s Dorando Pietri crossed the line first but was subsequently disqualified for being helped over the line by officials – including Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes.
Hayes and the American team launched a successful protest just as Pietri was carted off to hospital. According to statements by the two officials who followed him round the course, the tiny Italian had been taking atropine and strychnine capsules during the race which may have accounted for his distressed state on entering the stadium and which almost resulted in him suffering cardiac arrest.
Not even a gold cup offered by then Queen Alexandra could console him – nor a subsequent victory over Hayes in New York.
“I thought the British were the masters of fair play. Well I spit on that because I know exactly what their understanding of the word is and it