Jackie Joyner-Kersee: the Queen of the Olympic Heptathlon
The heptathlon is a hard event to dominate, especially when it comes to Olympics. Made up of seven events (100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m, long jump, javelin throw, 800m), the event is a test of several different skill sets that few have the ability to master, as well as a test of endurance over two consecutive days. When it comes to the 20th century, few if any were able to dominate the event like American Jackie Joyner-Kersee did.
After winning a silver medal in the event at the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Joyner-Kersee set a world record in the event at the 1988 games in Seoul, South Korea which still stands to this day. Kersee added a gold in the Long Jump event in Seoul as well.
Joyner-Kersee was able to successfully defend her gold in the Heptathlon at the 1992 games in Barcelona, Spain. To this day, she is the only woman to successful defend her Olympic gold in the event. She added a bronze in the Long Jump event at the games to become a multiple medalist for the second straight games.
While she was not able to participate in the Heptathlon event at the 1996 games in Atlanta due to injury, she did win a bronze medal in the Long Jump event, marking the four straight games she medaled at.