Linford Christie: He isn’t universally loved, but sprinter Linford Christie will always be remembered for winning the 100-meter gold medal in 1992, four years after a doping test found traces of a banned stimulant. The Jamaica-born Christie, 32 at the time of the Barcelona Games, benefited from the absence of Carl Lewis, who was ill during the U.S. trials and didn’t qualify. World record holder Leroy Burrell of the U.S. was favored and had beaten him 10 straight times, but he was charged with a false start in the final and wound up fifth. Christie remains the oldest man ever to win the 100.
Mary Rand: The first female British athlete to win an Olympic gold in track and field. Rand won the long jump at the 1964 Games in Tokyo in one of the best performances ever. Four of her six jumps were personal bests, and she registered a world-record jump of 22 feet-2 and ¼ inches to win the gold. Later in the week she won a silver in the pentathlon and a bronze in the 4×100 meter relay.
Derek Redmond: He didn’t win a medal. Didn’t even make the final. But the image of Derek Redmond crossing the finish line in the 400-meter semifinal at the 1992 Olympics is indelibly etched in the minds of all who saw it. At the 150-meter mark, his right hamstring tore and he fell to the ground. The rest of the field passed him and crossed the finish. Medics brought out a stretcher, but he insisted on limping to the finish unaided. Upon seeing his son in distress, Jim Redmond ran through the stands, past security and onto the track. The father put an arm around his son’s shoulder and they finished the race together, a touching moment that makes every Olympic highlight film.