November 12th, 2019

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Hans Zdrazila at the 1963 Danube Cup

History in Color:

Budapest, Hungary, 1963 – One of the best middleweights of the 1960s, Hans Zdrazila competes for Team Czechoslovakia  in the 75kg class at the 1963 Danube Cup in Danube.

In a year, Hans Zdrazila stepped up from being one of the best to being the best when he became an Olympic champion in the middleweight at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

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Vasily Alexeev: Strong in Paris (1971)

History in Color:

February 14, 1971, Paris, France – Legendary Vasily Alexeev snatches an opener at the Memorial Jean Dame tournament in France. Another legendary lifter, heavyweight Jaan Talts is assisting Alexeev and can be seen between the curtains in the back.

This was still an “early period” of Vasily Alexeev’s era in the super heavyweight. He was 29 and just a year ago won his first world title at the 1970 World Championships in Columbus, OH, USA.

In his career, Alexeev set 80 world records. 32 of them were in the clean-and-jerk, 17 in the press lift, 27 in total and 4 in the snatch. One of these snatch world records was actually set during the tournament in France shown on the cover photo.

Here is complete list of snatch world records set by Vasily Alexeev:

  • 177kg (Shakhty, 12/4/1970)

  • 177.5 (Paris, 2/14/1971)

  • 180kg (Moscow, 7/24/1971)

  • 187.5 (Verona, 6/6/1974)



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Charles Rigoulot: Four Months Before the Big Day In Paris

History in Color:

March 2, 1924, France – Top French contenders lined up at the 1924 French Championships in Olympic weightlifting (right to left) – Monnet, Rigoulot, Vandeputte, Decottignies.

In four months from this day, Charles Rigoulot (second on the right) won the gold medal in the 82.5kg class at the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris.

At the moment, he was a 21-year old athlete and only local weightlifting experts knew who he was.

In four months, Rigoulot became known in the whole France and in the whole world. In a few years, he became a French celebrity and was called as the “strongest man in the world” and, perhaps, the most popular weightlifter in the world before the beginning of the World War II.