September 22nd, 2019

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Power Cleans in Tatabanya, Hungary (1961)

History in Color:

September 15, 1961,  Tatabanya,  Hungary – While preparing for the 1961 World and European Championships in Vienna, Austria, weightlifters of Team Hungary are enjoying an outdoor training session in the national camp in Tatabanya (left to right*):

Imre Foldi (56kg, silver),  Robert Nagy (56kg, 9th),  Geza Toth (82,5kg, silver)  and Karoly Ecser (90+kg, 4th).

Note: * The names of the athletes are followed with their weight classes and places they won at the 1961 World Championships


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Alar Seim (Estonia)

History in Color:

November 1987, Tallinn,  Estonia – 29-year old Estonian super heavyweight Alar Seims competes in the 110+kg weight class at the 1987 Kalev Club Championships in Tallinn.

Alar Seim (b. 1958) was one of the lead heavyweights of Estonia in the 1970s and 1980s. He was a 3x Estonian champion as a junior and then the national title 4 times – as a heavyweight (1979) and as a super heavyweight (1983, 1986, 1989).

Alar Seim came to Olympic weightlifting from a freestyle wrestling and competed for the Kalev Club of Tallinn.

His personal best was a total of 392,5kg (165 + 227,5).

For those who got involved into Olympic weightlifting in the last decade, Alar Seim is a trainer of his son Mart Seim (b. 1990), a silver medalist at the 2015 World Championships and a bronze medalist at the 2016 European Championships and one of the top super heavyweight contenders of the 2010s.

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Norbert Schemansky: Snatching Heavy in Budapest (1962)

History in Color:

September 22, 1962, Budapest, Hungary – Olympic weightlifting legend, Olympic champion, 4x Olympian and 4x Olympic medalist, Norbert “Norb” Schemansky of Detroit, Michigan, USA competes in the 90+kg weight class at the 1962 World Championships in Budapest.

At the time of the tournament was held in Budapest, Schemansky was 38. He won his last gold medal at the World Championships in 1954.

On the photo from our History in Color series, Norb performs his famous split style in the snatch program. He just won the press and the snatch lifts and was 10kg ahead of another weightlifting legend, Yury Vlasov of Team USSR.

By the end of the night, Vlasov managed to bypass Schemansky in total only after lifting 207.5kg in his second attempt in clean-and-jerk. The winning lift featured a distinct double dip in the jerk part and remains one of the controversial moments in the history of this sport.

Vlasov won the World title with a 540kg(177.5+155+207.5) total. Schemansky won the silver with 537.5kg (182.5+160+195) in total.