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3. Manteo Mitchell runs relay with a broken leg
Iconic Sportsmen Who Battled On in Serious Injuries
The 2012 London Olympics will live long in the memory for the feats of the home athletes, but none was more amazing than the story of American 400m runner Manteo Mitchell. Mitchell was the lead-off man in the USA team for the heats of the 4x400 relay. Just 200m into the race, Mitchell – and a lot of the crowd – heard an audible crack. His left fibula, the smaller of the two shin bones, snapped and X-rays revealed a clean break. “It was literally bone, space, bone,” Mitchell said. “It broke in two.”

Running on adrenaline through the pain and with an altered stride – “I just focused on lifting my knees” – Mitchell posted a 46.1-second split.

Team USA went on to finish second in the final behind the Bahamas, and Mitchell received a silver medal for his role.

“I had to channel my attention and my focus on getting back to the finish line, knowing that there were three guys that were waiting for me and a whole country depending on me,” he said.