Since retiring after winning two gold medals in Athens in 2004, Holmes has concentrated on charitable work, mentoring young female track runners and raising awareness of the Female Athlete Triad, a bodily ailment afflicting female distance athletes. She now serves as the President of the Commonwealth Games England.
Holmes' achievements in athletics are unquestionable. She holds almost every indoor and outdoor world record in the 1500 m event. Her other records include: four straight Olympic gold medals (1996-2000), three consecutive World Championships titles (1995-2007), one every year from 1990 to 2003. The only athlete who comes close is American Carl Lewis.
Of all her victories, perhaps the most impressive is her six consecutive gold medals at the World Athletics Championships. This is more than any other athlete and matches America's Steve Prefontaine's seven golds at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics.
However, her fame rests not only on her own achievements but also on the fact that she was one of the first female sports stars in Britain. When she started out as a runner, women's sporting events were rare so she had to compete against men instead. But she quickly proved herself and became one of the country's favorite daughters. In 1995, she was even named Sports Personality of the Year, an award which goes to someone who has done something great for their country and sports.
It should come as no surprise that the most photographed female athlete in the United States during the build-up to the Sydney Games was not Marion Jones, but Amy Acuff. Acuff stands 6 feet 2 inches tall, is blonde, and is a high jumper on the side. During the pre-Olympic media attention, she made no mention of aiming to win a gold medal. She said only that she wanted to be remembered for her contribution to the sport.
In second place is another high jumper named Sally McLaughlin. The American photographer Paul Morley once called her the "most photographed woman in America." Her claim to this title comes from the fact that she has appeared in more than 10,000 photographs taken between September 1977 and July 1978. They are all part of a project called "Women: A Photographic History of American Life," which was published in 1979.
Third place goes to Marion Jones. The American sprinter has been involved in some controversial incidents in her career, but they have never prevented her from being widely photographed. In 2004, for example, she became the first female athlete to be banned for doping offenses after it was revealed that she had taken performance-enhancing drugs at various times during her career. But that hasn't stopped people from photographing her while she is imprisoned.
Other famous female athletes who have been photographed extensively include tennis players Billie Jean King and Venus Williams; basketball players Lisa Leslie and Sheryl Swoopes; softball player Jennie Finch; and field hockey player Alex Morgan.
She is the most decorated athlete on this list, with six Olympic gold medals, and she is tied for the most decorated female Olympian in track and field history, with nine medals. Sandi is a pole vaulter for Team USA. She earned a silver medal in pole vault at the 2016 Olympics and now holds the outdoor world record.
After Sandi, two more American women have won five medals each: Carlisa Murphy with a gold, a bronze, and three silvers, and Allyson Felix with a gold, a silver, and two bronzes. Then there's Martina Navrátilová with four medals; she won three golds and a bronze at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta before being banned for doping.
Navrátilová has been called "the greatest female athlete of all time". She won seven World Championships medals (five gold, one silver, and one bronze) in an eight-year period from 1988 to 1995. After her retirement from competition, she became a coach and managed to win another two World Championships medals in 2011 and 2015. Her training group is believed to be the biggest in the world.
Next up are two more American women who have won four medals each: Jackie Joyner-Kersee with a gold, a silver, and three bronzes, and Carmelita Jeter with a gold, a silver, and two bronzes.
Jackie Joyner-Kersee was unrivaled.
|1||Jackie Joyner-Kersee||Track & Field|
|2||Babe Didrikson Zaharias||Track & Field|
|3||Billie Jean King||Tennis|
|4||Sonja Henie||Figure Skating|
With a record-breaking Olympic victory, Elaine Thompson-Herah has officially become the fastest woman alive. She broke Flo-Olympic Jo's record in the 100-meter sprint in 1988 to win gold.
Felix, Allyson, Allyson Felix will make even more history at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. In her fifth Olympics, the 35-year-old American has increased her medal total to 11, becoming her the most decorated woman in Olympic track and field history, as well as the American with the most athletics medals. She also holds the record for most gold medals awarded to a female athlete (3).
In fact, no other track and field player has more than Felix's 11 medals. The next highest is Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina with 9 medals, followed by American athletes Florence Griffith Joyner and Carl Lewis with 8 each.
Of those 11 medals, 7 are gold, 1 is silver and 3 are bronze. The United States dominates the sport with 65 medals, while Russia is second with 14. Other countries who have sent athletes to at least one Olympic games include Canada, China, France, Jamaica, Nigeria, Norway, Trinidad and Tobago, and Ukraine.
Olympic medals are awarded in four main sports: athletics, boxing, wrestling, and swimming. Track and field events can be divided into two categories: sprints and distances. There are three types of sprints: 100 meters, 200 meters, and 400 meters. Women compete in up to two distances per event: shorter ones for triple jump, high jump, and long jump and longer ones for marathon, race walk, and cross country.
Katherine Grainger, the most accomplished female British athlete, earned five medals throughout her 16-year Olympic career. The squad returned home with 130 medals, 59 of which were gold, making it Great Britain's most successful foreign summer games.
Grainger won three silver medals and two bronze medals during her career, finishing second three times. She held world records in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay events.
Other notable athletes who have won multiple medals include Sally Gunnell (three gold), Mary Keitany (two gold), Katherine Grainger (five gold), Helen Richardson-Walsh (one gold), Elaine Thompson (one gold), Andy Turner (one gold), Jonathan Edwards (one gold), Matthew Pinsent (one gold), and Jason Kenny (one gold).
Of all the British women who have been successful at the Olympics, Laura Muir is the most decorated with four gold medals. She also holds the record for most consecutive gold medals at a single event with three in the sprint cycle race.
Muir competed from 2000 to 2004 and was part of the team that won both the gold and overall medals at the 2008 Beijing Games. She also won gold medals in the 500m and 1000m events at the 2012 London Olympics.
Simone Biles is a gymnast. Simone Biles of the United States poses with her five gold medals at the 2019 World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany. With her victories, she became the most decorated gymnast in world championship history, with a total of 25 medals. Simone Biles is the best gymnast of our time, if not all time. She has won four Olympic gold medals and one silver medal, as well as nine world championships medals (five gold, three silver).
Biles is also the most successful athlete of the American team at the World Gymnastics Championships, with nine overall medals - five gold, three silver. The only other American to win more than Biles is Nadia Comaneci with 11 medals (seven gold, four silver).
Biles was born on January 4th 1992 in Rockville Centre, New York. She is the daughter of Mary and Larry Biles and has two siblings: sister Maame Biles and brother Mason Biles. Her family moved to Houston when she was 10 years old so that her father could work for the U.S. Department of Defense. There she trained at the Houston Gymnastic Academy before moving back to New York City to join the Madison Square Garden Center for Gymnastics & Arts.
Biles made her official debut at the 2014 USA Gymnastics National Championships in Boston where she placed first in the all-around competition and went on to win the gold medal.