2. 1980: American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 5 gold medals
Before Michael Phelps made his run at eight golds in Beijing in 2008, there was speed skater Eric Heiden skating to victory five times during the 1980 Lake Placid Games, setting an individual record for gold medals in a single Olympics at the time. In the year that saw the Miracle on Ice, Heiden became nicknamed the Man of Gold, winning the 500 meter, 1000 m, 1500 m, 5000 m and at last, the 10000 m, in which he set a world record time by a whopping 6.2 seconds. Interestingly, Heiden shied away from the limelight in the wake of his success, opting to leave speed skating on top to take up professional cycling before he eventually moved forward in his medical studies—he worked as the team physician for the U.S.A. Speed Skating team in the past three Olympics, among other professional endeavors.
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