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TheSeoul Olympics played host to what has been described by some as the dirtiest race of all time, by others as the greatest The final of the men smetres at those Olympics is certainly the most infamous in the history of athletics, and indelibly etched into the consciousness of the sport, the Olympics, and a global audience of millions, than any other athletics event before or since Ben Johnson s world record time ofseconds as thrilling as it was was the beginning rather than the end of the story Following the race, Johnson tested positive, news that generated as many if not shockwaves as his fastest ever run He was stripped of the title, with Lewis awarded the gold medal, Linford Christie the silver and Calvin Smith the bronze More than two decades on, the story still hadn t ended InLewis was named Sportsman of the Century by the IOC, and Olympian of the Century by Sports Illustrated Yet his reputation was damaged by revelations that he too used performance enhancing drugs, and tested positive prior to the Seoul Olympics Christie also tested positive in Seoul but his explanation, that the banned substance had been in ginseng tea, was accepted Smith, now a lecturer in English literature at a Florida university, was the only athlete in the top five whose reputation remains unblemished the others all tested positive at some stage in their careers Containing remarkable new revelations, this book uses witness interviews with Johnson, Lewis and Smith among others to reconstruct the build up to the race, the race itself, and the fallout when news of Johnson s positive test broke and he was forced into hiding It also examines the rivalry of the two favourites going into it, and puts the race in a historical context, examining its continuing relevance on the sport today, where every new record elicits scepticism You get to realize that once the boys and girls began hitting the big time everybody wanted a piece of the action so everybody took to taking or agree that others should take PEDs An iconic moment in sporting history captured superbly I still remember waking up early in the morning as a teenager to watch the race, utterly encapsulated by the prospect of watching the race I was a Johnson fan and delighted he won Days later the world of sport seemed to cave in as he was outed as a drugs cheat Devasting for a fan of Johnson and of sport in general Of course over the years much of this story has been told but this book delves into the personalities as much as the story of the race This isn t a book that points fingers, it is about attitudes and tries to assess why the protagonists did what they did Coaches insights are included too.Ben Johnson broke the hearts of many sports fans yet this book humanises his role and he comes across as an individual to pity not to demonise So much to like about this book well written and great stories enveloped around a time in sport many would want to forgot Personally that race was a part of my childhood and this book brought it all backI just wish it was around when I used the race as the subject for my PE coursework A great read and huge congratulations to the author. I am fascinated by cheats in sport, and until the Lance Armstrong scandal, Ben Johnson was the cheat in sport I like Ben Johnson, I don t think he is the devil he has been portrayed to be To this end, this book gives a balanced account of the 1988 Seoul race, and the degree to which Ben was or less villainous than the other competitors.Anyone interested in sport and scandals should read this book. Although the case of Ben Johnson is notorious, I was only vaguely aware of his intense rivalry with Carl Lewis The rivalry on the track, was than outmatched by the goings on, off it This book gives a fascinating insight into the politics behind athletics, and some historical context to what is happening now with regards to drug testing, suspensions, authorised neutral athletes and the pressure to succeed.As an indication of how compelling this book actually is, I ve spent the past week seeking out further reading on the subject via the bibliography and references.