Bob Beamon： World-Record-Shattering Long Jump
World records in track and field are typically broken by the slimmest of margins——a fraction of a second faster， an inch or two further. At the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City， the world record for the long jump stood at 27 feet 4 3/4， and the best in the sport were vying to be the first to break the 28-foot barrier. On Oct. 18， Bob Beamon， a 22-year-old New Yorker， broke the 28-foot barrier. And the 29-foot barrier. After 19 strides down the runway， he hit the board perfectly and flew through the air like no athlete before him. When he finally landed， 29 feet 2 1/2 later， he had shattered the world record by nearly two feet. It would be 12 years before anyone jumped even 28 feet again.