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Greg Rutherford - Strictly Gold


Greg Rutherford is a retired British track and field athlete whose name is forever etched in the annals of sports history. Known for his remarkable achievements in long jump, Rutherford’s journey from aspiring athlete to Olympic champion is a tale of dedication, perseverance, and the pursuit of excellence.

In this London Real episode, Greg joins host Brian Rose in studio to discuss his sporting career and beyond, including his appearance on Strictly Come Dancing, his views on performance enhancing drugs and taking responsibility for being a role model.

Greg Rutherford’s early life was marked by a passion for sports and a desire to excel on the athletic stage. Growing up in a family with a sporting background: his grandfather was a European junior 100-yard dash champion and Rutherford was exposed to the world of athletics from a young age. Initially, he explored various sports, including football, before discovering his innate talent for long jump.

Rutherford’s breakthrough came on the international stage in 2005 when he won the silver medal at the European Athletics Junior Championships. This early success hinted at the potential that would later define his career. As he honed his skills and fine-tuned his technique, Rutherford emerged as a force to be reckoned with in the world of long jump.

The pinnacle of Greg Rutherford’s athletic career came at the 2012 London Olympics. Competing in front of a home crowd, Rutherford produced a stunning performance in the long jump final, leaping to a distance of 8.31 metres. His gold-medal-winning jump not only secured his place in history but also made him the first British man in 48 years to win an Olympic long jump title.

The triumph at London 2012 catapulted Rutherford into the spotlight, earning him widespread acclaim and making him a symbol of British sporting success. His achievement was not just a personal victory but a moment that resonated with the nation, capturing the hearts of fans and inspiring aspiring athletes.

Following his Olympic triumph, Greg Rutherford continued to be a dominant force in long jump competitions. He added the European Championship gold in 2014 to his list of accolades, showcasing his consistency and competitiveness on the international stage. However, like many athletes, Rutherford faced challenges and setbacks, including injuries that tested his resilience and determination.

Injuries ultimately played a role in Greg Rutherford’s decision to retire from competitive athletics in 2018. Despite stepping away from the track, his impact on the sport and his legacy as an Olympic champion endure. Rutherford’s contributions to British athletics extend beyond his individual achievements; he remains an inspirational figure for aspiring athletes and a symbol of the heights that can be reached through hard work and dedication.

Post-retirement, Greg Rutherford has explored various ventures, including media work and participation in television shows including Strictly Come Dancing. His charismatic personality and insights into athletics have made him a sought-after commentator and contributor to sports-related discussions.

Greg Rutherford’s journey from a young, aspiring athlete to an Olympic gold medalist is a testament to the power of talent, hard work, and perseverance. His achievements have left an indelible mark on British athletics, and his legacy continues to inspire the next generation of track and field enthusiasts. Beyond the medals and records, Rutherford’s impact is a reminder that sporting success is not just about individual triumphs but also about the ability to inspire and uplift a nation through the pursuit of greatness on the track.


00:00 | Trailer
01:55 Brian’s thoughts on the episode
05:27 Brian’s Introduction
06:03 Being famous
08:08 What Greg learnt as a competitive sports person from being on Strictly Come Dancing
19:13 Learning to manage positive and adverse social media
20:59 Winning Gold at London 2012 Olympics
24:53 What motivates Greg to win
26:54 The killer edge, inherent belligerent belief
33:51 From the red carpet to everything falling apart in 2013
36:59 Mental strategy for possibility of career ending injury
38:40 Building foundation for future career path
40:54 Coping with bitter disappointment at Rio Olympics 2016
46:42 How Greg gets his body to perform despite injury
49:36 Taking responsibility for being a role model
51:33 Performance level and entertainment value of Usain Bolt and Conor McGregor
1:00:01 Re-igniting public interest in track and field events
1:02:01 Taking inspiration from Mo Farah
1:03:56 Carl Lewis’ negative attitude effect on sport
1:07:31 Performance enhancing drugs use
1:16:24 Jamaica’s success in athletics
1:19:31 Drug taking in football and sports where vast sums of money are involved
1:21:52 How growing up with Jehovah’s Witnesses parents shaped him
1:26:52 Greg’s book ‘Unexpected’ shows about going off the rails
1:30:56 Greg’s past body issues
1:33:01 Without Dan Pfaff Greg wouldn’t be an Olympic Champion
1:39:37 How Greg turned his life around
1:43:50 Greg’s forays into skeleton bob and NFL
1:49:01 Launch of Take Flight, online fitness programme, hopefully to revolutionise the fitness world
1:58:25 Success secrets
1:58:55 Wild parties after Olympics
2:01:34 Why Greg spoke out about Tyson Fury’s remarks
2:05:05 Phone call to the 20 year old Greg Rutherford
2:07:27 Best advice ever received
2:09:07 Advice to the young person listening who wants to succeed in sport
2:10:29 Brian’s summing up.


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