Who is the most famous Olympic sports person in your country? What sport are they good at? How many medals did they win?
One of the most famous sports personalities in the UK is a rower called ‘Steve Redgrave’. He won 5 gold medals in 5 Olympic games from 1984 - 2000. He is the UK’s greatest Olympic athlete.
Early life and starting to row
Steve was born in a town called Marlow outside London on the banks of the river Thames. He first started rowing when his English teacher asked his class if anyone wanted to try rowing, Steve thought he would prefer it to being in school. A few months later in Bristol, he won his first race and he was hooked.
Steve’s first Olympic games were in 1984 in Los Angeles where he won a gold medal in a four-man rowing race. From then on, until 2000, he and his team continued to dominate the sport of rowing and he won five gold medals in the five Olympics that he competed in.
What Steve does today
Steve officially retired from rowing in 2000 but that doesn’t mean he stopped working. He started a charity called The Steve Redgrave Fund which helps young people get fit and become interested in sport. So far, he has raised more than £5 million pounds for the charity. He also works with the British charity Sport Relief.
Of course, Sir Steve has also been very involved with the London 2012 Olympics. He is an official ambassador to the UK team and will help mentor British athletes taking part in the Games. He is also the ‘Sports Legacy Champion’ and will help to make sure that people in the UK continue to be interested in sport and build on the Olympics after the Games have finished.
Why is he called ‘Sir’ Steve Redgrave?
The Queen of England gives special honours to people in the UK who do amazing things. She makes them ‘knights’ at a special ceremony and these people have the title ‘Sir’ before their name. Steve became Sir Steve in 2001.