Alain Mimoun beats Emil Zatopek at the Olympics 1956

Legendary Olympic Rivals: Emil Zátopek VS Alain Mimoun

Photo: Getty Images
words: Muhamed Beganović And Florian Wörgötter

One – Czech runner Emil Zátopek – was known as the Locomotive. The other – France’s Alain Mimoun – also had a nickname: Zátopek’s Shadow

In long-distance running, no athlete ran as evenly at high speed as Emil Zátopek. He was inimitable. And there was no one more exasperated by this than his closest challenger, Frenchman Alain Mimoun

The Rivals in Rio: The Red Bulletin presents the duels that are about to set the Olympics aflame.

Classic highlights as Emil Zátopek wins the men’s 10,000m gold medal at the London 1948 Olympic Games

© Olympic // YouTube

At the 1948 and 1952 Olympics, Mimoun chased eventual winner Zátopek and took silver in no fewer than three long-distance races. The two became firm friends over the years, but they remained bitter rivals on the track.

The winds of change arrived in Melbourne in 1956, when Mimoun competed in his debut marathon – and ran away with it. Zátopek was left in the shade for the first time ever.

Legendary Alain Mimoun comments on his experience at the Olympic Games in 1956

© sefraus // YouTube

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