Waterford celebrates the achievements of a remarkable Irish athlete Olympic medal winner Peter O'Connor.
In 1901, the Wicklow-born, Waterford-based solicitor Peter O'Connor (1874 - 1957) made sporting history breaking the world long jump record no less than nine times.
The Peter O'Connor Century Games at the Regional Sports Centre in Waterford are a celebration of one of the finest ever Irish athletes. The event marks 100 years since Peter O'Connor set a world long jump record at Ballsbridge in Dublin on 5 August 1901. Peter O'Connor jumped 24 feet 11 3/4 inches and was christened 'The Irish Antelope’ by American journalists.
This remained a world record for 20 years and an Irish record for 89 years.
They had never seen anything like this before. He had amazing spring.
Peter O’Connor went on to win a gold medal at the 1906 Athens Olympics in the triple jump. He also took the silver medal in the long jump.
He was the first man to raise an Irish flag at an Olympic Games.
Peter O’Connor is remembered as a tremendous self-trained athlete who was a family man.
Great-granddaughter Emily Jane Homan gives some insight into his family background. Four of the athletes sisters were nuns. Peter O'Connor had his silver medals made into chalices and presented to his sisters.
Events in Waterford included the unveiling of a commemorative plaque to mark the achievements of Peter O'Connor .
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 4 August 2001. The reporter is Damien Tiernan.