Carl Lewis was elected by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as a century athlete.
At the 1984 Olympics, he won 4 gold medals in events running 100m, 200m, long jump and 4x100m relay, balancing performance with Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympics.
After graduating from high school in 1979, Carl Lewis devoted himself entirely to athletics. At that time, athletics was just an amateur sport but he decided to make a living and build his own career from this sport. Throughout his career, he played an important role in promoting athletics from an amateur to a professional sport.
By 1980, he was eligible to join the US Olympic team, but the boycott of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan left him with no opportunity to compete at the Olympics that year.
In the early 1980s, he made great strides in long jump and 100m running. He ran 100m in 10 seconds and jumped over 8.5m in a few times. With such achievements, he gradually reached Bob Beamon’s gigantic record at the 1968 Olympics (8.9m).
On the opening day of the 1983 World Championship, Carl Lewis won a gold medal in the 100m, 200m and long jump events. This achievement helped him become the world’s number one sprint and jump athlete.
More successful after the 1984 Olympics, he started to become famous, even in the US – where athletics was just a side sport outside the Olympics.
He managed to balance the achievements of Jesse Owens’s four historic gold medals at the 1936 Olympics. In the end, he succeeded in winning gold medals in events running 100m, 200m, long jump and 4x100m relay.
After the Los Angeles Olympics, Canadian athlete Ben Johnson emerged as a competitor to Carl Lewis. The media promoted competition between the two.
The 100m finals at the Seoul Olympics is one of the most anticipated races. Ben Johnson won and set a world record with a record of 9.79 seconds. Meanwhile, Carl Lewis set a new US record of 9.92 seconds. Three days later, Ben Johnson was disqualified because he tested positive for steroids. The gold medal is naturally given to Carl Lewis. In a 1989 investigation, Ben Johnson admitted to long-term steroid use.
At the 1991 World Championship, Carl Lewis and Mike Powell had an extraordinary competition in the long jump. Carl Lewis jumped 8.83m, coming very close to Bob Beamon’s record.
At the 1992 Olympics, Carl Lewis won a silver medal in long jump but was not eligible to participate in the 100m running content.
At his last Olympics in 1996, Carl Lewis won the 9th Olympic gold medal in long jump at the age of 35.
After retiring from a career after the 1996 Olympics, Carl Lewis participated in several films and developed his own fitness equipment brand as well as a fitness coach career.