With just 30 Days to go to the Rio 2016 Olympics, it’s time for the fourth instalment of our forgotten Olympian Crap Fantales.
Our forgotten Olympian Crap Fantales is a series where we highlight some of our Olympians who may never have taken gold, but are still deserving of some credit for their achievements. Join us for another trip down memory lane.
This time we hit the track for a 400 metre runner who was once dubbed ‘the fastest white man on earth”, something to cheer about? Well at least it is something to hold onto when you just miss out on an Olympic medal as this forgotten Olympian did.
Of course we are talking about Darren Clark.
The 400 metre sprint specialist came fourth at two consecutive Olympics in 1984 and 1988 in his pet event. He also combined for the 4 x 400m relay which also resulted in fourth at the 1984 Olympics.
That’s not to say he never won a medal at a major meet. He nabbed a silver medal in the 1986 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh. Eventually he broke through in the 1990 Commonwealth Games in Auckland for a deserved gold in the 400m.
Not content with Commonwealth gold, he tried his hand at rugby league in 1991 with Balmain, creating yet another memorable Australian sporting crossover to recall. He featured in only Reserve Grade and Sevens. He did score 11 tries. Not a bad effort and one of the better sporting crossovers that we will get into later in the week.
Injury prevented him from making it to the Barcelona games, and he slipped under the radar from that point.
A point of interest about his time on the track, his time in the 1988 Olympics which was good enough for fourth would have been good enough for second in the 2012 Beijing Olympics.
Like many athletes after the music stops, he had a down period, described here in the SMH, so hopefully a little recognition in this time of Olympic hype should give a little boost. A forgotten Olympian deserves no less.
Time then to doff our cap to another forgotten Olympian entrant into the Crap Fantales Hall of Fame. A huzzah if you will for the ex “fastest white man on earth”.
A second achievement after being inducted into the real Sport Australia Hall of Fame. A full description of his talents is here.
Why not relive just how close he got to a medal in 1984.