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Mexico 1968 - Key Moments

ESPN staff
October 12, 2011
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Bob Beamon stunned the world by soaring out to 8.90m to win gold in the long jump © Getty Images
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Bob Beamon took the Games by storm, taking advantage of the event being at altitude to sail out to 8.90m - a world record in the long jump which would last for 22 years. The jump was so long, judges had to use a metal tape measure to record the spectacular distance.

The jumpers were in focus in Mexico. As well as Beamon's feat, the Games witnessed the birth of the Fosbury flop - the reverse high jump style perfected by American Dick Fosbury which won him the gold medal and is now the standard for all high jumpers.

The venue - the only one to date to take place in Latin America - was not ideal for all as it proved a disaster for endurance athletes on account of it being at altitude. There were world records in all of the men's races that were 400m or shorter, including both relays, and in the long jump and triple jump as well.

David Hemery was Britain's main man on the track, with his gold in the 400m hurdles the only title for the country in athletics.

East Germany and West Germany showed up to the summer Games as separate countries for the first time - something that would continue until 1992 in Barcelona. North Korea withdrew on the eve of the he Games after the the IOC refused to name them the Democratic People's Republic of Korea or DPRK.

Sweden's modern pentathlete Hans-Gunnar Liljenwall was the first athlete to be disqualified for failing a drugs test - for excessive alcohol. Sex testing for women was also introduced for the first time.

Electronic times were used as the official standard for the first time in athletics, cycling, rowing, canoeing, swimming and equestrian competitions.

North Korea withdrew its athletes just before the start after the IOC refused to name them the Democratic People's Republic of Korea or DPRK.

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