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Lewis leads four 1984 Olympians added to Hall of Fame


Jill Geer
Chief Public Affairs Officer
USA Track & Field
(508) 520-1529

INDIANAPOLIS - Nine-time Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis leads a quartet of track and field notables, all members of the 1984 U.S. Olympic team, that has been elected to the National Track & Field Hall of Fame.

Selected in recent balloting were sprinter and long jumper Lewis, long jumper-sprinter Larry Myricks and distance runners Henry Marsh and Alberto Salazar. Lewis and Myricks were two of the greatest long jumpers in U.S. track and field history while Marsh and Salazar were two of the greatest distance runners. The four were part of the 1984 Olympic track and field team that won 40 medals in Los Angeles, the highest total since women began competing in the sport at the 1928 Olympics.

The induction will take place November 30 at the Jesse Owens Awards Dinner and Xerox Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, presented by The Document Company - Xerox. The dinner is part of USA Track & Field’s 2001 Annual Meeting in Mobile, Alabama. The induction will bring to 188 the number of inductees into the National Track & Field Hall of Fame, which will reopen in its new location at the 168th Street Armory in New York City in 2003.

"To have four athletes inducted into the Hall of Fame further adds to the greatness of the 1984 Olympic team, one of the finest in U.S. track and field history,” said USATF President Bill Roe. “The athletic credentials of these four athletes are awesome. We are grateful to Xerox for sponsoring the ceremony that will honor them.” "Welcoming new members to the Hall of Fame is always an honor, but this class is even more special to me, personally, as a contemporary of Carl, Larry, Henry and Alberto,” said USATF CEO Craig Masback, a world-class miler in the early- to mid- 1980s. "All represented the United States with distinction at all levels of competition.” Eligible voters included Track and Field Writers of America members, Hall of Fame members, USATF Association presidents, members of USATF standing sports committees and members of USATF's Athletes Advisory Committee. "Xerox is once again happy to take a leading part in highlighting the history of a great sport," said Terry W. Dillman, Xerox Manager of Olympic Marketing. "Our congratulations go to legends who make up the Class of 2001 for attaining this richly deserved honor.”

Lewis, 40, is considered one of the greatest track and field athletes the world has ever seen. A nine-time Olympic gold medalist, 10-time World Championships medalist and former world record holder at 100 meters, Lewis’ Olympic and World Championship exploits are legendary.

Marsh, 47, was a four-time Olympian, placing fourth at the ’84 Games. He represented the U.S. in 19 international competitions and still holds the American steeplechase record of 8:09.17 set in 1985.

Myricks, 45, was a four-time Olympian and in 1987 became the first World Indoor long jump champion. By placing third at the 1988 Olympics, he completed a U.S. sweep of the event along with Lewis and Mike Powell. Myricks is still fourth on the U.S. all-time list in the long jump.

Salazar, 43, is a two-time Olympian, three-time New York City marathon champion and former American record holder at distances ranging from 5,000m to the marathon. He is still third on the U.S. all-time list in the marathon. Biographies of each of the inductees follow:

CARL LEWIS: Born July 1, 1961, Birmingham, Ala. Regarded as one of the greatest Olympians of all-time, Carl Lewis achieved perhaps his most memorable accomplishment at the 1984 Olympic Games when he matched the feat of fellow Hall of Famer Jesse Owens by winning four gold medals in the 100 meters, 200m, long jump and 4x100m relay. At the 1988 Olympics, Lewis won the 100 and long jump and in 1992 again won the long jump and anchored the winning 4x100 team. In 1996, he won his fourth straight gold medal in the long jump, making him only the second Olympian ever to win the same event in four consecutive Olympic Games. (Hall of Fame discus thrower Al Oerter was the first). His total of nine Olympic gold medals ties him with swimmer Mark Spitz for first place on the all-time U.S. list. In addition, Lewis also won 10 medals - eight of them gold - at the World Outdoor Championships, the most by any athlete in the world.

HENRY MARSH: Born March 15, 1954, Boston, Mass. One of the greatest U.S. steeplechasers of all-time, Henry Marsh still holds the American record in the event (8:09.17 in 1985). A 1978 graduate of Brigham Young University, Marsh burst onto the international scene in 1976 when he was second at the NCAA meet, second at the Olympic Trials and 10th at the Olympic Games. Marsh was to be on three more Olympic teams and overall, represented the U.S. 19 times in international competition. He was world ranked a dozen times and was top ranked in 1981, 1982 and 1985. He was the top ranked U.S. steeplechaser 10 times. He was the 1979 Pan American Games champion and was a member of the 1983 and 1987 World Championship teams. Marsh later became an attorney.

LARRY MYRICKS: Born March 10, 1956, Clinton, Miss. His long jump duels with Carl Lewis became legendary and Larry Myricks will go down as one of the greatest jumpers in U.S. track and field history. A 1979 graduate of Mississippi College, Myricks broke onto the international scene in spectacular fashion in 1976, winning the NCAA title and placing second at the Olympic Trials. At the Olympics, he qualified for the final but suffered a broken foot on a warmup jump and was forced to scratch from the competition. He was still ranked sixth in the world, the first of 14 world rankings in the long jump. One of his best seasons was 1979 when he swept nearly everything in sight. He was ranked first in the world and won the NCAA, USA and World Cup titles. He was also on the 1980, 1984 and 1988 Olympic teams, taking fourth in 1984 and third in 1988. He was third at both the 1987 and 1991 World Championships and was also on the 1983 World Championships team as a 200-meters runner. In 1987 he became the first World Indoor Champion in the long jump. In the 200, he twice was nationally ranked and was ranked fifth in the world in 1983.

ALBERTO SALAZAR: Born Aug. 7, 1958, Havana, Cuba. Alberto Salazar was born in Cuba but at the age of 2, his family moved from Cuba to Manchester, Conn. Nine years later they moved again, this time to Wayland, Mass. It was there that Salazar became an outstanding high school runner before enrolling at Oregon in 1976. While running for the Ducks, Salazar helped Oregon win the 1977 NCAA cross country title. It was after college, however, that he had his greatest success, winning six national distance titles and being selected to two Olympic teams (1980 and 1984). In 1984, he placed 15th in the marathon but some of his greatest moments came at the New York City Marathon. He won there in 1980 and repeated in 198l and 1982. In the 1981 race, he broke the 12-year-old world record with a 2:08:13 time but the race was found to be short. He also won the 1982 Boston Marathon and set several American distance records from 5,000 meters to the marathon. Salazar went on to work for Nike and is also a personal coach of elite distance runners. In addition, he became a restaurateur in Eugene, Oregon.

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