Jenner true to word, wins Olympic gold
July 30, 1976 - After finishing 10th in the decathlon at the 1972 Olympics, Bruce Jenner told the winner, the Soviet Union's Nikolai Avilov, "Next time, I'm going to beat you."
Next time was this time, and the 26-year-old Jenner was true to his word. The man who wanted to be a movie or television star was the matinee idol in Montreal for winning the Olympic gold medal. In breaking his own world record by 80 points, Jenner registered 8,618 points in the grueling two-day, 10-event competition.
He started the day 35 points behind West Germany's Guido Kratschmer (who would finish second) and 17 behind Avilov (third). But he was confident of victory as his strongest events came on the second day.
He ran the 110-meter hurdles in 14.84 seconds; threw the discus 164 feet, 2 inches; leaped a personal best of 15 feet, 9 inches in the pole vault; threw the javelin 224 feet, 9½ inches; and ran the 1,500 meters in 4:12.61, another personal best.
When he crossed the finish line, a fan thrust a small American flag into his hand. After waving it, Jenner threw the flag into the crowd, as if it were a miniature javelin.
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