Paraskevi Patoulidou - Greece - 1992 Olympic Games 100m hurdles Champion.

Photo/Foto: George Herringshaw

Date: 06 August 1992

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      Monday, 29 March 1965
      Tripotamos, Greece.
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Paraskevi PATOULIDOU - Greece - 1992 Olympic Games 100m hurdles Champion.

Paraskevi Patoulidou celebrates her victory in the women's 100 mtres hurdles

at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.

Women's 100m. Hurdles Final.

Olympic Games 1992

1. Paraskevi PATOULIDOU   GRE   12.64
2. LaVonna Martin   USA   12.69
3. Yordanka Donkova   BUL   12.70
4. Lynda Tolbert   USA   12.75
5. Gail Devers   USA   12.75
6. Aliuska Lopez   CUB   12.87
7. Natalya Kolovanova   CIS   13.01
8. Odalys Adams   CUB   13.57


On 5th. August 1992, Patoulidou was celebrating for having qualified for the

final in the 100 m hurdles by improving her personal best from 12.96

(set in the qualifying round) to 12.88 seconds in the semi-finals. This success

made her the first Greek woman ever to reach a track final at an Olympic Games.


However, the following day one of the biggest upsets in the history of the Olympic Games was to take place. The clear favourite of the 100 m hurdles final, Gail Devers of the United States, made a mistake and tripped on the last hurdle. Patoulidou took advantage and lunged her body forward for the finishing line.

Having crossed the line in 12.64 seconds (a Greek national record), Patoulidou immediately threw her hands in the air celebrating what she thought was a silver medal. When she watched the replay of the race on the stadium's big screen she realised that she had won the race, Patoulidou signaled that she was number one (as pictured above).

In her first interview to the Greek journalists minutes after the race, Patoulidou dedicated her medal to her home country by saying “For Greece, dammit!”, a catchphrase that is still in use.