October 9th, 2019

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American Olympic Champions in Melbourne (1956)

History in Color:

Melbourne, Australia, November 1956 – U.S. Olympic champions in weightlifting at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne gathered for a memory group photo (left to right):

Isaac Berger (60kg, gold medal), Tommy Kono (82,5kg, gold medal), Paul Anderson (90+kg, gold medal), Chuck Vinci (56kg, gold medal)

U.S. weightlifting team had an outstanding performance and won the first place in Melbourne. It was their third consecutive win in the competition versus other national weightlifting teams at the Olympics. USA also earned the nation number one in weightlifting title in London (1948) and Helsinki (1952).

U.S. athletes brought home 7 medals – 4 gold (Chuck Vinci, Isaac Berger, Tommy Kono, Paul Anderson), 2 silver (Peter George, Dave Sheppard), and 1 bronze (Jim George).

In the last day of the weightlifting tournament, the gold was won by Paul Anderson in the heavyweight class. The “Miracle of Nature” was an obvious favorite with all his world records and strength results. Needless to say, it wasn’t an easy win. He won the title only because he was lighter than his opponent, Humberto Selvetti of Argentina. Actually, the cover photo shows how unusually light Paul Anderson looked after his big win in the 90+kg class. Compared to his 164.5 kg body weight at the previous year World Championships in Munich, Anderson was only 137.9 kg in Melbourne.

1956 Summer Olympics
Location: Melbourne, AUSGOLD MEDALISTS</p>
Weight Class Name Total (kg)
56 Bantamweight Charles VINCI, United States 105EOR+105OR+132.5 = 342.5WR
60 Featherweight Isaac BERGER, United States 107.5+107.5OR+137.5OR = 352.5WR
67.5 Lightweight Igor RYBAK, Soviet Union 110+120OR+150OR = 380OR
75 Middleweight Fedor BOGDANOVSKY, Soviet Union 132.5OR+122.5+165OR = 420WR
82.5 Light Heavyweight Tommy Tamio KONO, United States 140OR+132.5OR+175WR = 447.5WR
90 Middle Heavyweight Arkady VOROBYEV, Soviet Union 147.5WR+137.5+177.5OR = 462.5WR
90+ Super Heavyweight Paul ANDERSON, United States 167.5+145EOR+187.5OR = 500OR

Note: To view a complete list of the winners in the weight classes above, please follow the link associated with the weight class.

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