Emil Zátopek & Dana Zátopková turn 100! Google dedicates doodle to legendary couple
- Czech Republic
Happy Birthday Emil Zátopek and Dana Zátopková!
Google today (on September 19, 2022) dedicates a beautiful vibrant doodle to Emil Zátopek and Dana Zátopková. Both were born on September 19, 1922. They married each other on October 24, 1948. Their union later became the union of two exceptional athletes and Olympic winners.
Emil Zátopek was a Czech long-distance runner and is best known for winning three gold medals at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki. He won gold in the 5,000 meters and 10,000 meters run, but his final medal came when he decided at the last minute to compete in the first marathon of his life. He was the first runner to break the 29-minute barrier in the 10,000 meters in 1954.
Dana Zátopková was a Czech javelin thrower. She won the gold medal for javelin at the 1952 Summer Olympics (only an hour after her husband, Emil Zátopek, won the 5,000 meters). She developed a passion for sports while she grew up in Karviná, Czech Republic. Before she ever threw a javelin, she was a talented handball player and played in college and professionally where she led her team to a Czechoslovakian handball title. The javelin throw soon caught Dana Zátopkovás attention.
Emil Zátopek was selected for the Czechoslovak national team for the 1946 European Championships in Oslo and finished fifth in the 5,000 m in 14:25.8, breaking his own Czechoslovak record of 14:50.2. At the 1948 Summer Olympics in London, Zátopek won the 10,000 m and finished second behind Gaston Reiff from Belgium during a driving rainstorm in the 5,000 m. His running style was distinctive and very much at odds with what was considered to be an efficient style at the time. His head would often roll, face contorted with effort, while his torso swung from side to side. He often wheezed and panted audibly while running, which earned him the nicknames of "Emil the Terrible" or the "Czech Locomotive".
Dana Zátopková and Emil Zátopek broke a combined 35 world records in a marriage that lasted 52 years. Dana received the Olympic Order for distinguished contributions to the Olympic movement. The editors at Runner's World Magazine named Emil the Greatest Runner of All Time.
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Source: Google doodles