Mark Allen is one of the greatest athletes of history even if has not the same popularity and recognition of myths like Michael Jordan or Eddy Mercx. Allen appeared in the late 80s to revolutionize the triathlon in one of his legendary disciplines: the IronMan. He became the only six-time champion.
The Californian was a passionate child who loved to swim and run. He moved to
San Diego to develop his career as a biologist and then retired from competition. There he met Julie Moss, a student who will participate in the Ironman Hawaii to complete her thesis.
Allen, attending the competition, was impressed by the exploits of Moss, who led the race for a while, until the lack of hydration slowed her. Moss, the woman of his heart, finished the race with a beautiful and honorable 2nd place. It was from that moment that Allen decide to follow the example of who became his wife.
In 1983, he participated in his first Hawaiian Ironman and after two 2nd places in 1986 and 1987, he got the supreme victory in 1989 and became, at the same time, the first world champion on Olympic distance. The legend increased with the following championships between 1989 and 1993. In 1995, when he won in Hawaii at 37 years old, he definitely entered in the history of Olympus.
ESPN named him as the best distance runner in history in 2012.
Picture ©Guy Mayer – Flickr