Search for content, post, videos


Allsport photo agency at 50 – read how this image started it all

The photo that started it all:  Summer Olympics 18th October 1968 Bob Beamon of the United States ©Photo by Tony Duffy/Allsport/Getty Images) Click through the photo for licensing details.

Getty Images sports is today celebrating the 50th anniversary of photo agency Allsport.

Founded by Tony Duffy and John Starr here’s how it started in 1968….
On the 18th October 1968 at the National Stadium in Mexico City, Bob Beamon of the United States leapt 29 feet, 2½ inches, 8.90m to win gold and set an Olympic record during the Men’s Long Jump event at the XIX Summer Olympics. The moment was captured by practicing accountant and amateur photographer Tony Duffy, a major sports fan who had ambushed his way to the side of the track for the event. Tony tucked away his camera and continued on his holiday. Once back in London weeks later, Tony showed the photo to some friends who recognised what an incredible photo he had and encouraged him to send it to some papers. He did, and the picture was quickly picked up by news organisations. Tony saw potential for a sports photography agency and Allsport, the world’s first dedicated sports photo agency was born. In 1998 Allsport became Getty Images Sport.

This photo taken in 2012 features core members of the Allsport team – John Starr on the right of the photo, John Gichigi 2nd left, Tony Duffy with the glasses and Nick Paul, who lent Allsport his premises as their first office and studio.

Tony told PAN when we asked him what his original vision had grown into: “I try to check Getty Images’ sports coverage on a daily basis and I’m constantly impressed with what they have achieved. I also admit to a feeling of pride and satisfaction to see my original vision taken to such heights. Getty’s coverage has become a synonym for excellence in shooting sports events.”

Pan asked Ken Mainardis (SVP Global Editorial at Getty Images) to select his favourite Allsport images , a few are below –  view Ken’s full choice for PAN here 

Aug 1984: Carl Lewis of the USA accelerates down the runway of the long jump during the 1984 Summer Olympics at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. Mandatory Credit: David Cannon/Allsport


Nov 1991: Konishiki ‘The Dumptruck’ of Hawaii stares down at his opponent during the first Sumo Bashai held outside Japan, at the Albert Hall in London, England. Visions of Sport.(Photo by Chris Cole/Allsport /Getty Images)


1989: Terry Butcher is left bloodied and scarred after the World Cup Qualifier match against Sweden played in Sweden. Mandatory Credit: David Cannon /Allsport


1982: Diego Maradona of Argentina #10 is confronted by a posse of Belgium defenders during the match in the 1982 Wold Cup in Spain. Mandatory Credit: Steve Powell /Allsport


Sebastian Coe of Great Britain raises his arms in celebration as he crosses the finish line ahead of Jurgen Straub to win the men’s 1500m race on 1st August 1980 at the XXII Summer Olympic Games in Moscow, Russia.Visions of Sport.(Photo by Tony Duffy/Allsport/Getty Images)

Great thanks to Julia Holmes at Getty Images for her help getting this article together  …all the best for a very ‘busy’ future Julia!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *