Edwin Moses: The Invincible
Today let me introduce you Edwin Moses – The Invincible.
Ed Moses is the most ruthless athlete in history, a man that managed to remain undefeated for 9 years. The American from Ohio is unique in history and so shall he remain, because no one can dream that may achieve something similar to what Edwin Moses did.
From 1976 to 1989 Ed Moses competed in 156 400 meters hurdles races, being defeated in only six of them, an incredible feat that makes him unique in the history of athletics. Between August 1977 and June 1987 Edwin Moses finished first 122 times in a row. This winning streak of 9 years 9 months and 9 days consisted of 122 wins, out of which 107 400 m hurdles finals. Edwin Moses consolidated his dominance by winning 2 Olympic gold medals, 2 World Championships, 3 World Cups and improving the world record 4 times.
As a 20-year-old, unknown scholar-athlete from a renowned black college, Ed Moses burst upon the international scene at the Montreal Olympics. Not only did he win the Olympic gold medal – in his first international meet, and just four months after running his first 400m hurdles – he set a world record of 47.64 seconds, lowering John Akii-Bua’s mark of 47.82. His eight meters victory over Mike Shine was the largest winning margin in the event in Olympic history.
Then Edwin Moses proceeded to set successive world records for the 400-metre hurdles of 47.45 seconds (1977), 47.13 seconds (1980), and 47.02 seconds (1983), the last of which stood for nine years, when Kevin Young established the current world record. Ed Moses never got the chance to defend his Olympic title because US President, Jimmy Carter, ordered the American team to boycott the Moscow Games in 1980. At the 1984 Olympics, Edwin Moses became the second man to win two 400 hurdles, crossing the finish line after 47.75 seconds. His swiftest Olympic time, 47.56 seconds, earned him a bronze medal at the 1988 Games in Seoul, South Korea, in the last 400 meters hurdles race for the invincible American.
Moses did not only accumulated the most amazing string of consecutive victories ever amassed by an individual athlete, but he also revolutionized this kind of race, being the first one who pulled 13 steps between hurdles, instead of 14. Ed Moses was a formidable assembly of speed, technique, grace and stamina; Moses consistently made the most demanding of events seem almost ridiculously simple. ‘My slow is faster than most athletes’ fast,’ he said. ‘People either think that I’m a freak or that the other guys aren’t any good.’ Edwin Moses won 1983 World Championships despite one of his shoelaces coming undone on the back straight.
This is Edwin Moses – The Invincible, an athlete that is still underrated and his accomplishments are not fully acknowledged even though what he did can not be repeated by anyone else! We are speaking about a legend that wanted to be remembered as ‘the guy nobody could beat’.