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From Athens With Pride chronicles Australia’s Olympic journey, from the first Summer Games in Athens in 1896 to the Winter Games in Sochi in 2014. The journey has been one of wins and losses as well as triumphs and disappointments, but the commitment of Australia’s athletes shines through at all times. This book is a tribute to our Australian Olympic athletes, and this is their story.
Written by Harry Gordon, the official historian for the Australian Olympic Committee, it is a great tale of passion and strength. He brings to life the often-intriguing story of Australia’s long history at the Games, sharing his extensive knowledge with wit and wisdom. Gordon documents the amazing triumphs, the crushing disappointments, the hard-fought competition, the dedicated training, the friendships and the rivalries, the sacrifices made for sport, the administration machinations, and the sometimes controversial events in the Australian Olympic movement.
Australia has competed at both Summer and Winter Olympics, and boasts an unbroken attendance at the Summer Games. In the early years, Australia’s competitors were ordinary athletes, who simply enjoyed sport as a hobby. Resources and training facilities were limited and our athletes made the most of what they had, or came up with improvised equipment. As the years have progressed, and the Olympic competition has evolved, sport is no longer the domain of the hobby-athlete.
Each sport has its favourites and the pressure to perform in all fields, from athletics, cycling and equestrian events to swimming and tennis has, on occasion, taken its toll.
Australia’s representatives have established a proud tradition at the Olympic Games, competing at the highest level. Some have been crowned in medal glory, some have not, but all have competed in the true spirit of the Olympic Games: Citius, altius, fortius – faster, higher, stronger.