Rand in 1966
|Born||10 February 1940|
|Height||1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)|
|Weight||61 kg (134 lb)|
Mary Denise Rand, MBE (née Bignal on 10 February 1940) is a former English track and field athlete. She won the long jump at the 1964 Summer Olympics by breaking the world record, the first British female to win an Olympic gold medal in track and field. She remains the only Great Britain female athlete to win three medals in a single Games.
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north-northwest. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.
Track and field is a sport which includes athletic contests established on the skills of running, jumping, and throwing. The name is derived from the sport's typical venue: a stadium with an oval running track enclosing a grass field where the throwing and some of the jumping events take place. Track and field is categorized under the umbrella sport of athletics, which also includes road running, cross country running, and race walking.
The long jump is a track and field event in which athletes combine speed, strength and agility in an attempt to leap as far as possible from a take off point. Along with the triple jump, the two events that measure jumping for distance as a group are referred to as the "horizontal jumps". This event has a history in the Ancient Olympic Games and has been a modern Olympic event for men since the first Olympics in 1896 and for women since 1948.
Mary Rand is the daughter of Eric and Hilda Bignal. She was born and grew up in Wells, Somerset, England. At 16, Millfield School offered her an athletics scholarship. She excelled in all sports and won All-England Schools' titles. She was outstanding at high jump, long jump and hurdles. In 1956, she was a guest of the Olympic squad at a training camp in Brighton, where she beat Britain's best high jumpers.
Wells is a cathedral city and civil parish in the Mendip district of Somerset, on the southern edge of the Mendip Hills. Although the population recorded in the 2011 census was only 10,536, and with a built-up area of just 3.245 square kilometres, Wells has had city status since medieval times, because of the presence of Wells Cathedral. Often described as England's smallest city, it is second only to the City of London in area and population, though not part of a larger urban agglomeration.
Somerset is a county in South West England which borders Gloucestershire and Bristol to the north, Wiltshire to the east, Dorset to the south-east and Devon to the south-west. It is bounded to the north and west by the Severn Estuary and the Bristol Channel, its coastline facing southeastern Wales. Its traditional border with Gloucestershire is the River Avon. Somerset's county town is Taunton.
The high jump is a track and field event in which competitors must jump unaided over a horizontal bar placed at measured heights without dislodging it. In its modern most practised format, a bar is placed between two standards with a crash mat for landing. In the modern era, athletes run towards the bar and use the Fosbury Flop method of jumping, leaping head first with their back to the bar. Since ancient times, competitors have introduced increasingly effective techniques to arrive at the current form.
At 17, Rand set a British record of 4046 points in the pentathlon.She won a silver medal in the 1958 Commonwealth Games long jump and came fifth in the high jump. One month later she came seventh in the European pentathlon championship.
The 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games were held in Cardiff, Wales, from 18–26 July 1958.
A pentathlon is a contest featuring five events. The name is derived from Greek: combining the words pente (five) and -athlon (competition). The first pentathlon was documented in Ancient Greece and was part of the Ancient Olympic Games. Five events were contested over one day for the Ancient Olympic pentathlon, starting with the long jump, javelin throwing, and discus throwing, followed by the stadion and wrestling. Pentathletes were considered to be among the most skilled athletes, and their training was often part of military service—each of the five events in the pentathlon was thought to be useful in war or battle.
In the 1960 Olympics in Rome, she set a British record of 6.33m in the qualifying round of the long jump, which if repeated, would have won a silver in the final. In the final she fouled two of the three jumps and finished ninth. She also finished fourth in the 80m hurdles. She won a bronze medal in the European championship long jump in 1962.
The 1960 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XVII Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event that was held from August 25 to September 11, 1960, in Rome, Italy. The city of Rome had previously been awarded the administration of the 1908 Summer Olympics, but following the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 1906, Rome had no choice but to decline and pass the honour to London.
Rome is the capital city and a special comune of Italy. Rome also serves as the capital of the Lazio region. With 2,872,800 residents in 1,285 km2 (496.1 sq mi), it is also the country's most populated comune. It is the fourth most populous city in the European Union by population within city limits. It is the centre of the Metropolitan City of Rome, which has a population of 4,355,725 residents, thus making it the most populous metropolitan city in Italy. Rome is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, within Lazio (Latium), along the shores of the Tiber. The Vatican City is an independent country inside the city boundaries of Rome, the only existing example of a country within a city: for this reason Rome has been often defined as capital of two states.
At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, Rand set an Olympic record in the long jump in the qualifying rounds, jumping 6.52m. In the final she beat the favourite, world record holder Tatyana Schelkanova of the USSR and Poland's Irena Kirszenstein. Her first jump of 6.59m was a British record. However, in the fifth round, on a wet runway with a headwind of 1.6 metres a second, she broke the world record, leaping 6.76m to take gold. Her record lasted four years until it was broken at altitude by Viorica Viscopoleanu in the subsequent Olympics.
The 1964 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XVIII Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event held in Tokyo, Japan, from 10 to 24 October 1964. Tokyo had been awarded the organization of the 1940 Summer Olympics, but this honour was subsequently passed to Helsinki because of Japan's invasion of China, before ultimately being cancelled because of World War II.
Tokyo, officially Tokyo Metropolis, one of the 47 prefectures of Japan, has served as the Japanese capital since 1869. As of 2018, the Greater Tokyo Area ranked as the most populous metropolitan area in the world. The urban area houses the seat of the Emperor of Japan, of the Japanese government and of the National Diet. Tokyo forms part of the Kantō region on the southeastern side of Japan's main island, Honshu, and includes the Izu Islands and Ogasawara Islands. Tokyo was formerly named Edo when Shōgun Tokugawa Ieyasu made the city his headquarters in 1603. It became the capital after Emperor Meiji moved his seat to the city from Kyoto in 1868; at that time Edo was renamed Tokyo. Tokyo Metropolis formed in 1943 from the merger of the former Tokyo Prefecture and the city of Tokyo. Tokyo is often referred to as a city but is officially known and governed as a "metropolitan prefecture", which differs from and combines elements of a city and a prefecture, a characteristic unique to Tokyo.
The first world record in the women's long jump was recognised by the Fédération Sportive Féminine Internationale (FSFI) in 1922. The FSFI was absorbed by the International Association of Athletics Federations in 1936.
Rand won silver medal in the pentathlon, her 5035 points putting her second in the all-time rankings. She was beaten to the gold by Irina Press, whose biological sex has been the subject of speculation.[ citation needed ] She also won a bronze as a member of the Great Britain team that finished third in the 4×100 metres relay.
Irina Natanovna Press was a multitalented Soviet athlete who competed at the 1960 and 1964 Olympics. In 1960 she won a gold medal in the 80 m hurdles and finished fourth in the 4 × 100 m relay. In 1964 she finished fourth in the hurdles and sixth in the shot put, but won gold in the newly introduced pentathlon event.
Six days after Rand won the gold medal, her roommate Ann Packer won the 800 metres. Packer said: "Mary was the most gifted athlete I ever saw. She was as good as athletes get, there has never been anything like her since. And I don't believe there ever will."
Rand was made an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) in the 1965 New Year's Honours List and voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year for 1964.
After Tokyo, her training was less intensive, but she won a gold the long jump at the 1966 Commonwealth Games. Due to injury, she failed to make the 1968 British Olympic team and retired in September that year.
Rand also held the world record in the triple jump from 1959 to 1981; it was unofficial as a world record in the women's triple jump was not recognised by the International Association of Athletics Federations until 1990.
There is a plaque commemorating the world record long jump (6.76 metres) by Rand at the 1964 Olympic Games in the Market Place in Wells. She was succeeded as Golden Girl of British athletics by her friend and London Olympiades club-mate, Lillian Board.
In 2009, Rand was inducted into the England Athletics Hall of Fame.
On 26 January 2012 Wells awarded her the Freedom of the City, following a campaign started by Wells resident Tony Williams.
Around 1960 Bignal dated Dutch decathlete Eef Kamerbeek. In 1961 she met rower Sid Rand. Three days after meeting she agreed to marry him and they married five weeks later.They had a daughter, Alison. The marriage lasted five years.
In December 1969, she married her second husband, American Bill Toomey, the 1968 Olympics' decathlon champion. This marriage lasted 22 years and they had two daughters, Samantha and Sarah. She later married John Reese and lives with him in Atascadero, California, in the United States.She holds dual UK/US citizenship.
Carolina Evelyn Klüft is a retired Swedish track and field athlete who competed in the heptathlon, triple jump, long jump, and pentathlon. She was an Olympic Champion, having won the heptathlon title in 2004. She was also a three-time World and two-time European heptathlon champion. She is the only athlete ever to win three consecutive world titles in the heptathlon, and was unbeaten in 22 heptathlon and pentathlon competitions from 2002 to 2007, winning nine consecutive gold medals in major championships.
Maureen Caird is an Australian former track athlete, who specialised in the sprint hurdles. At the 1968 Summer Olympics, she became the youngest-ever individual Olympic athletics champion at the time, at age 17, when she won gold in Mexico City.
Ann Elizabeth PackerMBE is an English former sprinter, hurdler and long jumper. She won a gold medal in the 800 metres and a silver in the 400 metres at the 1964 Summer Olympics.
Marla Lee Runyan is an American track and field athlete, road runner and marathon runner who is legally blind. She is a three-time national champion in the women's 5000 metres.
Siegrun Siegl is a retired East German athlete who specialised in the pentathlon and later long jump.
Pamela Kilborn-Ryan, AM, MBE is an Australian former athlete who set world records as a hurdler. For three years, she was ranked as the world's top woman hurdler.
The women's pentathlon was part of the Athletics at the 1964 Summer Olympics program in Tokyo. It was held on 16 October and 17 October 1964, with the first three events on 16 October and the last two on 17 October. 20 athletes from 15 nations entered. The 1964 Summer Olympics were the first appearance of the women's pentathlon.
Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill is a retired British track and field athlete from England, specialising in multi-eventing disciplines and 100 metres hurdles. As a competitor in heptathlon, she is the 2012 Olympic champion, a three-time world champion, and the 2010 European champion. She is also the 2010 world indoor pentathlon champion. A member of the City of Sheffield & Dearne athletic club, she is the current British national record holder for the heptathlon. She is a former British record holder in the 100 metres hurdles, the high jump and the indoor pentathlon.
Yvette Winifred Corlett was a New Zealand track-and-field athlete who was the first woman from her country to win an Olympic gold medal and to hold the world record in the women's long jump. Williams was named "Athlete of the Century" on the 100th anniversary of Athletics New Zealand, in 1987.
Sheila Sherwood is a former international long jumper whose career highlights included a silver medal at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico, and a gold medal at the 1970 British Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh. She competed in three consecutive Summer Olympic Games and had a career best distance of 6.73 metres.
Tia Hellebaut is a retired Belgian track and field athlete, as well as a chemist, who started out in her sports career in the heptathlon, and afterwards specialized in the high jump event. She has cleared 2.05 metres both indoors and outdoors.
Janet Mary Simpson was a British athlete who competed in sprint events and the 400 metres.
Jean Catherine Pickering was a female track and field athlete from Great Britain, who competed mainly in the 80 metres hurdles and long jump.
Olga Rypakova is a Kazakh track and field athlete. Originally a heptathlete, she switched to focus on the long jump and began to compete in the triple jump after 2007. Her first successes came in the combined events at Asian competitions – she won the women's pentathlon at the 2005 Asian Indoor Games and took the heptathlon gold at the 2006 Asian Games the following year.
Dianne Burge, is a former Australian sprinter who competed in two Olympic Games and won three gold medals at the Commonwealth Games. She was awarded the title South Australian 'Athlete of the Century' by Athletics South Australia.
Katarina Mary Johnson-Thompson is an English track and field athlete specialising in the heptathlon and pentathlon. She is the 2015 and 2019 European Indoor champion in the pentathlon with a British record score of 5000 points, and the 2018 World Indoor champion in the pentathlon. In the Long jump, she is the 2012 World Junior champion and the 2014 World Indoor silver medalist. She also holds the British high jump records with 1.98m outdoors (2016) and 1.97m indoors (2015).
Nafissatou "Nafi" Thiam is a Belgian athlete specializing in multi-event competition. She was born in Brussels to a Belgian mother and a Senegalese father. As of May 2018, Thiam holds the Belgian record in women's heptathlon and women's Javelin. She won the gold medal in the heptathlon at the 2016 Summer Olympics, 2017 World Championships and the 2018 European Championships. She was voted IAAF World Athlete of the Year in 2017.
Combined events at the Summer Olympics have been contested in several formats at the multi-sport event. There are two combined track and field events in the current Olympic athletics programme: a men's decathlon and a women's heptathlon.
Ilona Bruzsenyák is a Hungarian former track and field athlete who competed in the women's pentathlon, long jump and 100 metres hurdles. She was the gold medallist in the long jump at the 1974 European Athletics Championships. Bruzsenyák represented her nation at the Summer Olympics in 1972 and 1976, competing in both long jump and pentathlon. She was a ten-time national champion at the Hungarian Athletics Championships.
Mirosława Kazimiera Sarna is a Polish former track and field athlete who competed in the long jump, short sprints and the women's pentathlon. She was the gold medallist in the long jump at the 1969 European Athletics Championships and was twice a bronze medallist in that discipline at the European Athletics Indoor Championships.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mary Rand .|
| Women's Long Jump World Record Holder |
1964-10-14 – 1968-10-14
| Women's Triple Jump World Record Holder |
Not officially ratified by the IAAF
1959-06-18 – 1981-05-09