Father's Day: Inspirational father-son bond creates Olympic history

Derek Redmond of Great Britain is helped towards the finish line by his father Jim Redmond after suffering an injury in the 400m semi-final at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games
Derek Redmond of Great Britain is helped towards the finish line by his father Jim Redmond after suffering an injury in the 400m semi-final at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games

As several countries around the world celebrate Father's Day, we take a look at one of the most enduring Olympic moments of all time...

British athlete Derek Redmond was among the favourites to medal in the 400m at the Barcelona 1992 Olympics, despite having endured a career plagued by injury.

He missed the 1986 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh with a hamstring injury and withdrew from the Seoul 1988 Olympics moments before his first heat after failing to recover from a problem with his Achilles.

But he found his form in Barcelona.

In the first heat of the Games, Redmond ran his quickest 400m in four years and easily qualified for the semi-finals by storming through the second.

However, what happened next would go on to rank among the most memorable moments in Olympic history.

"On the day everything went smooth," he told The Guardian in 2011.

"I got a really good start, which was unusual for me. I think I was the first to react to the pistol. My normal tactics were to get round the first bend and then put the burners on for 30m, accelerate hard. But by the time I’d got upright I was almost round the bend, much further than usual, and I decided not to bother, to save my energy in case I had to fight for the line. About three strides later I felt a pop."

The “pop” was his hamstring. Redmond collapsed to the floor in agony. His Olympic dream was over.

Derek Redmond's inspirational race | Barcelona 1992
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Yet instead of limping off the track, Redmond pushed himself back onto his feet and began limping to the finish line.

In one of the most defining images of determination and perseverance in Olympic history, his father Jim ran to his aid and carried his son forward.

As the pair made their way defiantly towards the finish line, the crowd of 65,000 stood as one and gave them a standing ovation.

However, the story was not over. Just before reaching the finish line, Jim let Derek go. It meant his son could cross the line on his own.

"Someone once asked me, ‘how do you become successful?',” Derek Redmond told Olympic.org.

"And the easiest, and most relevant answer, is to get up just one more time than you’ve been knocked down.”

Now I can see that we brought into the Games, the spirit of the Games

But at the time it was just what a parent does.

Jim, who went on to be a torchbearer at the London 2012 Olympic Games, didn't understand the attention he received in the months that followed. For him, it was nothing more than the natural reaction of a father looking out for his son.

"It was a father's instinct, I had to stop him, to prevent him doing any more damage to his leg," he told The Australian in 2017.

"When I got there he insisted on finishing the race, so I said to him: 'We started your career together and will will finish it together'.

"Now I can see that we brought into the Games, the spirit of the Games, but at the time it was just what a parent does."