Iconic Olympian athlete visits Willesden sport academy

Tommie Smith won a gold medal in Mexico in 1968

Aspiring athletes from the borough have been treated to an inspirational speech from one of the most iconic figures in Olympic history.

Tommie Smith, the man famous for staging the iconic Black Power salute during the gold medal ceremony at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico, visited the Willesden’s Track Academy in Donnington Road, Willesden, on Saturday (13).

Mr Smith then held a question and answer session for the lucky athletes inside the stadium whereby he was quizzed on his career and achievements and the famous protest which led to his eviction from the games.

The former 200m world record holder, now aged 67, also brought along young athletes from the USA who then trained alongside the Track Academy members.

Kunle Olulode, Mr Smith’s agent, spoke of the importance of the visit for the aspiring athletes.

He said: “It was really inspiring for the children to see him and hear what he had to say as he is such an important figure”

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“Many people knew who he was already because they had seen the famous image of the protest.”