Spitz, Mark

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Portrait of Mark Spitz (click to view image source)
Mark Spitz
(to view image author and license, click here)
Name
Spitz, Mark Gender: M
Mark Andrew Spitz
born on 10 February 1950 at 17:45 (= 5:45 PM )
Place Modesto, California, 37n38, 121w0
Timezone PST h8w (is standard time)
Data source
Quoted BC/BR
Rodden Rating AA
Collector: Rodden
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_aqucol.18.gif 21°46' s_mo.18.gif s_sagcol.18.gif 08°40 Asc.s_leocol.18.gif 24°09'



Biography

American professional swimmer who, at the age of two, learned to swim when his family moved to Hawaii. At 14, the family returned to California and he worked out every morning in the pool. By 17, Spitz was known as the world's best swimmer for breaking five world records in international competitions and also for winning seven Gold Medals in the 1972 Olympics.

The oldest of three kids, Spitz was programmed for aquatic success from age eight, when his dad, Arnold, a construction consultant, and mom, Lenore, entered him in a swimming program at the YMCA. He began breaking records as soon as he hit the water. His parents were so driven by his success that they moved three times in the next six years in search of ever-better coaching. Spitz's workout started before dawn and afternoon workouts lasted from 2:30 to 5:00 PM. There were no days off. By 14 Spitz had had enough and wanted to quit, but his parents convinced him to go on.

In his 14-year swimming career he participated in two Olympic Games and set 35 world records. Before the 1968 Games in Mexico City he was sure he would set the swimming world on fire, but found he was not liked by his teammates while at training camp beforehand. At 18 Spitz was, by his own admission, immature and when he predicted he would win six gold medals in Mexico City, some teammates were not amused. Spitz also worried about his health so much that teammates called him a hypochondriac and made fun of him. Often putting his foot in his mouth, he'd say too much and tended to see things from only his own viewpoint. Spitz began his Mexico City Olympics by finishing third in the 100-meter freestyle, an event he only recently had begun to swim seriously. He then lost the 100-meter butterfly by five-tenths of a second loosing his place on the 400 meter medley relay team and a chance at a gold medal. He was psychologically destroyed for the rest of the time he was there, almost costing the team a gold medal in the 800-meter freestyle relay. Then he finished last in the 200-meter butterfly, a record he had held for ten years. At 18 his life crumbled and he spent the next four years putting it back together for the 1972 Olympics.

Feeling bigger, stronger, more mature and experienced, training camp went well this time. Spitz won the 100 and 200-meter freestyle, the 100 and 200-meter butterfly setting world records as an individual. His team won the 400 and 800 freestyle relay and the 400-meter medley relay giving him a total of seven gold medals in the 1972 Olympics. When offers poured in for the bronze, good-looking, mustached Spitz, he brushed off dental school and headed for Hollywood. He won his seventh gold medal on Monday evening, 9/04/1972; less than eight hours later the next day terrorists attacked the compound where Israeli athletes were living and killed nine of them. When asked by the media what he, a Jewish athlete, thought about it he said, "I think this is a terrible tragedy," and when the same questions were asked again, and again he responded, "No comment" irking the press. Appearances on TV and on variety shows turned out just as badly. The critics ravaged him calling him wooden and stiff with no sex appeal. He declined movie offers because he knew he had no ability to act and turned away from Hollywood. Spitz got into business, developing commercial real estate and manufacturing children's clothes.

Spitz married former model Suzy Weiner in 1973 and they have a son, Matt. Suzy, he claims, is the driving force in his life and doesn't let him get away with anything.

Spits travels a lot and occasionally works for ABC TV during Olympic Games. In 1989 Spitz began training to compete in the 100-meter butterfly, his favorite event, in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. He was 42 at the time of this attempt to win his 10th gold medal, but failed to make the U.S. team.

Made wealthy by endorsements, by 2001 he was living in Southern California with his wife, Suzy, 49 and sons Matthew, 20 and Justin, 10. He sells luxury homes and designs swimming pools and serves as coach for Justin's soccer team.

Link to Wikipedia biography

Events

  • Work : Prize 1972 (Seven Gold Medals during Olympics)

Source Notes

Gene Lockhart quotes B.C. (Same in Contemporary American Horoscopes)

Categories

  • Family : Relationship : Number of Marriages (One, lasting)
  • Family : Parenting : Kids 1-3 (Two sons)
  • Vocation : Building Trades : Interior design (Designs swimming pools)
  • Vocation : Business/Marketing : Real estate (Sells luxury homes)
  • Vocation : Sports : Swimming
  • Notable : Awards : Olympics (Seven Gold Medals)
  • Notable : Famous : Top 5% of Profession
  • Notable : Book Collection : American Book

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