Event: Men's Athletics - Marathon
Medals: Gold, Gold
Year/Host City: 1960/Rome, 1964/Tokyo
Surprise because: In the 1960 Olympics:
(a) He was unknown. So unknown that at the start of the race, one of the media commentators said "And what's this Ethiopian called?"
(b) He was from a poor, humble background. A shepherd boy turned military guard.
(c) He ran barefoot.
(d) He was up against European Championship gold medal winner, Sergei Popov.
(e) He won in record time.
And in the 1964 Olympics:
(a) Forty days before the Olympics began, he had an emergency appendectomy. He was not expected to compete.
(b) He did compete. By mile 22, he was two and a half miles ahead of the nearest competitor.
(c) He broke the world record.