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This article is about the televised sports competition. For other uses, see Superstars (disambiguation).

Superstars is an all-around sports competition that pits elite athletes from different sports against one another in a series of athletic events resembling a decathlon. Points are awarded for the position in which the competitor places in each event. The competitor with the most points at the end of all ten events is declared the champion.

On the original ABC version, an athlete could compete in up to seven events, but no athlete was permitted to compete in the sport(s) of his or her profession. In the World, International, European and British versions of the contest, athletes would compete in 8 out of 10 events, with no one generally allowed to take part in their own sport, although some handicapping rules did apply.

The idea was developed by 1948 and 1952 Olympic figure skating champion Dick Button. He shopped the idea to all three U.S. television networks, and ABC bought it as a special for the winter of 1973. The first Superstars competition was held in Rotonda West, Florida in March 1973 and was won by pole vaulter Bob Seagren. The BBC covered the competition and aired their own programme, featuring British athletes on 31 December 1973, which was won by 400 metre hurdles Olympic champion David Hemery. Television broadcasts of the competitions were popular both in Europe and North America in the 1970s and 1980s. Further events featuring European athletes started from 1975, with six World Superstars championships taking place from 1977 to 1982.

Competitors participate in a range of different sporting events, including a 100 yard dash/100m sprint, half mile (800 m) run, obstacle course or steeplechase, weightlifting, soccer skills, rowing, tennis, basketball, bicycle racing, shooting and swimming. The sports have varied over time and between the various national and international competitions; in the first competition there was no obstacle course, but table tennis and baseball hitting were included, while the European versions featured a 600m Steeplechase, indoor cycling on a highly banked velodrome, and the infamous 'Gym Tests'.

Canadian soccer player Brian Budd was unbeaten in Superstars contests, winning the World Championship three times from 1978 to 1980, making him the most successful Superstar of all time.


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Thanks to this graph, we can see the interest Superstars has and the evolution of its popularity.

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