LOS ANGELES. — Carl Lewis recalls the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, where he claimed gold medals in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m and long jump, as the “greatest time” of his life.
Now the US legend is campaigning to bring the Games back to the city in 2024 – 40 years after he etched his name alongside that of Jesse Owens with his golden quadruple.
“What I remember the most, my family and I rented a house just behind the Chinese Theatre,” Lewis said, referring to the Hollywood landmark famous for the foot and hand-prints of the stars adorning its entrance plaza.
“We all stayed in the same house. My sister was in the Olympic team, my brothers and parents were there. Mother was cooking dinner every day, it was an amazing time.
“They were sitting in the stands – I knew exactly where they were,” Lewis said.
“It was some of the greatest time of my entire life.
“On top of that, I competed,” added Lewis, although his recollections of that whirlwind are less clear.
“I remember the running the least,” he said. “It sounds weird.
“I competed seven out of eight continuous days, every day I had to compete tomorrow, that part – it’s a blur.
“When you go for that long period of time, you have to be mentally sharp – it’s kind of a blur … I just remember crossing the line of the 100m and the relay. Just to do it and to win four gold medals.”
Lewis, then 23, began his Olympic quest with a clear victory in the 100m in 9.99sec. He dominated the next day in the long jump with a jump of 8.54m on his first attempt, eschewing further attempts to save energy. — AFP.