Vebjørn Rodal

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Vebjørn Rodal
Vebjorn Rodal Klabu2010.jpg
Personal information
Nationality Norwegian
Born (1972-09-16) 16 September 1972 (age 41)
Berkåk in Sør-Trøndelag, Norway
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Sport
Sport Running
Event(s) 800 meter

Vebjørn Rodal (born 16 September 1972) is a Norwegian former middle distance athlete, who won the gold medal in the 800 m at the 1996 Summer Olympics with the time 1:42.58.

Biography[edit]

Rodal, born and raised in Berkåk, made his international senior debut in 1992, at the Barcelona Olympics, reaching the semi-finals in his event, the 800 m. Part of a group of successful Norwegian athletes, he won his first international medal only two years later, placing second at the 1994 European Championships .

By finishing third in the final of the 1995 World Championships, he established himself as one of the top 800 m runners in the world, and was among the medal contenders for the 1996 Summer Olympics, held in Atlanta. Not present at the Olympics was world champion Wilson Kipketer, who had emigrated from Kenya to Denmark, but wasn't allowed to run for his new country by the Kenyans. This made the final wide open. Rodal made the final, which was run in a blistering pace. Rodal overtook most of the field in his second lap, and took the lead at the last bend, crossing the line first in a new Olympic record of 1:42.58, which stood until the 2012 Summer Olympics. With four runners under 1:43, the final was one of the fastest 800 m ever run.

The Olympic title would remain Rodal's only international victory. He failed to make the final of the Sydney Olympics in 2000, finishing seventh in his semi-final. He more or less retired afterwards, although he has entered national competitions on occasion.

Competition record[edit]

Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
Representing  Norway
1990 World Junior Championships Plovdiv, Bulgaria 15th (sf) 800 m 1:49.94
1991 European Junior Championships Thessaloniki, Greece 7th 800 m 1:50.62
1992 Olympic Games Barcelona, Spain 21st (sf) 800 m 1:49.53
1993 World Championships Stuttgart, Germany 18th (sf) 800 m 1:46.50
1994 European Championships Helsinki, Finland 2nd 800 m 1:46.53
1995 World Championships Gothenburg, Sweden 3rd 800 m 1:45.68
1996 Olympic Games Atlanta, United States 1st 800 m 1:42.58
1997 World Championships Athens, Greece 5th 800 m 1:44.53
1998 European Indoor Championships Valencia, Spain 3rd 800 m 1:47.40
1999 World Championships Seville, Spain 36th (h) 800 m 1:48.73
2000 Olympic Games Sydney, Australia 22nd (sf) 800 m 1:48.73

External links[edit]


Awards
Preceded by
Bjørn Dæhlie
Norwegian Sportsperson of the Year
1996
Succeeded by
Hanne Haugland
Nils Arne Eggen