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First time feats in London and the US

Steven Lynch August 20, 2012
Kirani James claimed Grenada's first gold medal © PA Photos
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Grenada won their first medal - a gold - at the London Olympics. Did any other countries break their duck? asked Jeremy Curtis
Grenada became the smallest nation ever to win an Olympic gold medal when Kirani James finished first in the 400 metres track final - the population of the tiny Caribbean island is about 110,000. Seven other countries won their first-ever Olympic medals in London, although none of the others managed a gold: Bahrain (bronze for Maryam Yusuf Jamal in the women's track 1500m), Botswana (silver for Nijel Amos in the track 800m), Cyprus (Pavlos Kontides's silver in the sailing), Gabon (taekwondo silver for Anthony Obame), Guatemala (Erick Barrondo's silver in the 20km walk), Montenegro (women's handball silver) and Serbia (gold in taekwondo, shooting silver and bronze, and another bronze in the men's water polo). There had, however, been previous medallists from Serbia & Montenegro when it was one country.

Michael Phelps won six medals in London - did anyone match this? asked Colin Bloomfield
Just as he did in Beijing (with eight), Michael Phelps left London with more medals than anyone else. He finished with six (four golds and two silvers), just ahead of four other swimmers with five - Missy Franklin, Ryan Lochte and Allison Schmitt from the United States, and Australia's Alicia Coutts. Phelps finished his Olympic career with 22 medals all told, beating the old record of 18 by the Russian gymnast Larisa Latynina.

Who was the player Andy Murray beat this year at both Wimbledon and the Olympics? asked Martin Harrison
The unlucky man defeated twice at Wimbledon this year by Andy Murray was the Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis, the beaten Australian Open finalist of 2006. Murray won their third-round clash at Wimbledon in four sets, and repeated the dose at the same stage of the Olympic Games tournament at Wimbledon a few weeks later (Baghdatis again won a set, in what this time was a best-of-three-set match that went the distance). On the women's side Serena Williams defeated Victoria Azarenka in both events on her way to a Wimbledon/Olympic double. Serena also defeated Agnieska Radwanska at Wimbledon (in the final) and her sister Urszula in the Olympics.

Sir Chris Hoy has now won six Olympic gold medals. Is this a record for a cyclist? asked James Rose
Chris Hoy's amazing Olympic tally of six golds is indeed a record for a cyclist - and a British Olympian, beating Steve Redgrave's five. Hoy also won a silver medal, and his overall haul of seven Olympic medals is matched only among cyclists by Bradley Wiggins (four gold, a silver and two bronzes). Two other cyclists have won six Olympic medals: the Dutch woman Leontien Zijlaard van Moorsel (four gold, a silver and a bronze in 2000 and 2004) and Burton Downing of the United States, who won two golds, three silvers and a bronze, all of them in St Louis in 1904.

Whose idea was the keirin event in the Olympic cycling? It looks rather strange! asked John McDonald
It is a rather strange event, with a man on a moped leading the riders out at a gradually increasing speed. But keirin racing has long been very popular in Japan, and since 1980 it has been included in the world championship programme. It was added to the Olympic roster in 2000, and Chris Hoy is no doubt glad it was - he has won the last two gold medals, in 2008 and 2012, while Victoria Pendleton completed a British double in London by winning the inaugural women's Olympic gold. Personally, though, I'd rather see the individual pursuit restored to the Olympic programme - I think it's the most exciting of the cycling races to watch. Bradley Wiggins might well agree - he won gold in the event in 2004 and 2008, but it was cut from the programme for 2012.

How many British golfers had won the PGA Championship before Rory McIlroy? asked David Campbell
Rory McIlroy was the first Briton to win the PGA Championship since 1919, when Jim Barnes retained the title first contested in 1916. Barnes was born in Cornwall in 1886, but moved to the United States when he was about 20. He also won the US Open in 1921 and the British one in 1925. Jock Hutchison and Tommy Armour, who won the PGA title in 1920 and 1930 respectively, were both born in Scotland but were naturalised Americans by the time of their victories. Since then the only successes by European golfers were the wins of Ireland's Padraig Harrington in 2008 and Martin Kaymer of Germany two years later. McIlroy's runaway win - eight shots was the biggest margin since the PGA became a strokeplay event in 1958 - came in the first major ever played at Kiawah Island, which did famously stage the Ryder Cup in 1991.

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