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Jenner sprinted the last lap, making up a 50-meter deficit and nearly catching the event favorite, Soviet Leonid Litvinenko, who was already well out of contention for the gold medal, but whose personal best had been eight seconds better than Jenner's personal best before the race.
Jenner set a new personal best time and won the gold medal with a world-record score of 8,618 points.
Her name and gender change became official on September 25, 2015. Olympic trials in Eugene, Oregon, Jenner was in fifth place in the men's decathlon, behind Steve Gough and Andrew Pettes.
All Olympic events and medals are for men's events and prior to her gender transition. Needing to make up a 19-second gap on Gough in the men's 1500 metres, Jenner qualified for the Olympic team by running a fast final lap, finishing 22 seconds ahead of the other runners.
Since 2007, Jenner has appeared on the reality television series Keeping Up with the Kardashians with Kris, their daughters Kendall and Kylie Jenner, and step-children Kourtney, Kim, Khloé, and Rob Kardashian.
Previously identifying publicly as male, Jenner revealed her identity as a trans woman in April 2015, publicly announcing her name change from Bruce to Caitlyn in a July 2015 Vanity Fair cover story.
Jenner was inducted into the United States National Track and Field Hall of Fame in 1980, the Olympic Hall of Fame in 1986, the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame and the Connecticut Sports Hall of Fame in 1994, and the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.
In the 1970s, Olympic athletes were considered to be amateurs and were not allowed to seek or accept payment for their positions as sports celebrities.
Jenner was confident: "The second day has all my good events."After the Games were over," Jenner said, "I happened to be the right guy, at that right place, at that right time." Tony Kornheiser of The New York Times wrote: "Jenner is twirling the nation like a baton.He and wife, Chrystie, are so high up on the pedestal of American heroism, it would take a crane to get them down." After the expected Olympic success, Jenner planned to cash in on whatever celebrity status could follow a gold medal in the same mold as Johnny Weissmuller and Sonja Henie, who had become major movie stars following their gold medals.In 1985, Jenner's Olympic decathlon score was reevaluated against the IAAF's updated decathlon scoring table and was reported as 8,634 for comparative purposes.