HENDERSON, Nev., Nov. 1, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A new book, OLYMPIC COLLISION: The Story of Mary Decker and Zola Budd, takes readers back to the most memorable moment in modern Olympic history. In doing so, award-winning sports biographer Kyle Keiderling reveals that almost everything we thought we knew about the controversial incident and the two women involved is wrong.
A dual biography of the two, who were pitted against each other by a massive media build-up as participants in the "duel in the Coliseum" at the LA Olympics follows the lives of the women from birth to the Olympics, and beyond.
"The lives of these two women make the Kardashians look normal," Keiderling said.
Born eight years and eight thousand miles apart, the lives and careers of Mary Decker and Zola Budd are eerily similar. Both came from dysfunctional families and both used early emotional trauma as the driving force behind their spectacular careers. Both Decker and Budd were teen phenoms that would go on to become the best middle distance runners their respective countries ever produced.
Mary Decker would in turn be, "Little Mary," in pig tails and braces racing, at 14, against the best in the world and "Queen Mary," when in 1983 she would become a two time world champion. Yet Decker, who endured thirty surgeries and had more comebacks than Cher, is shown to have led a soap opera-like life.
Budd, just 17 when her father sold her life story to a British tabloid and had her spirited out of her native South Africa to England, endured the most vicious welcome imaginable by the British anti-apartheid lobby and media. Somehow she managed to endure it all and got to LA as the principal rival to "America's sweetheart," only to be seen as the cause of Decker's tumble and her loss of Olympic gold.
As Budd continued to lead the race the ninety thousand in attendance rained boos down upon her. It was, finally, more than the five foot, eighty-four pound, barefoot runner could bear. She slowed to fade out of medal contention.
"I couldn't bear to stand on the podium and hear those boos," she said.
OLYMPIC COLLISION is the first bio of Decker and Budd published in the United States and will, for the first time, tell the story behind the headlines.
OLYMPIC COLLISION is available at online retailers, bookstores and at www.keiderlingbooks.com.
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SOURCE Kyle Keiderling