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Dave Steen

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 1
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDavid Lee "Dave"•Steen
Used nameDave•Steen
Born14 November 1959 in New Westminster, British Columbia (CAN)
Measurements185 cm / 80 kg
AffiliationsBurnaby/University of Toronto Track and Field Club/University of California, Berkeley, USA
NOC Canada


Dave Steen came from an athletic family; his father, Don, was a Canadian champion in the decathlon while his uncle, David, won bronze at the 1962 as well as gold at the 1966 and 1970 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in shot put. After winning the decathlon at the 1977 Canada Games, Dave entered the University of Toronto, where he honed his skills. He set the first of 10 Canadian records in the event in 1979 and was selected to represent his nation at the 1980 Summer Olympics, which were eventually boycotted by Canada. After becoming the first Canadian to earn 8,000 points in 1982, he was runner-up in the event at that year’s Commonwealth Games, behind 1980 and 1984 Olympic champion Daley Thompson. In 1983 he won gold medals at the Summer Universiade and the Pan American Games, before coming in eighth in the decathlon at the Summer Olympics. He raised the pentathlon record a final time in 1986 and won another silver at that year’s Commonwealth Games, again behind Thompson, but failed to finish in the event at the 1987 World Championships. His final tournament was the 1988 Summer Olympics, where he got off to an inauspicious start of seventeenth after the 100 metres, followed by a jump up to eighth place after a fifth place finish in the long jump. Sixteenth in the shot put and high jump knocked him down to twelfth overall, while eighth in the 400 metres, ninth in the 110 metre hurdles, and twelfth in the discus helped him move up to ninth overall. After coming in second in the pole vault, he made it to the bronze medal position with seventh-place finishes in the javelin throw and 1,500 metres to become Canada’s first and, as of 2012, only Olympic decathlon medalist. He was named Ontario Athlete of the Year and retired from active competition, following up his career with color commentating for CTV and involvement in anti-doping campaigns. He has been inducted into the British Columbia (1991) and Canada’s (1992) Sports Hall of Fame, as well as the Order of Canada (1990).

Personal Best: Dec – 8415 (1988).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1984 Summer Olympics Athletics CAN Dave Steen
Decathlon, Men (Olympic) 8
1988 Summer Olympics Athletics CAN Dave Steen
Decathlon, Men (Olympic) 3 Bronze

Olympic family relations

Special Notes