Bud Held, United States

Bud Held

World Records: 80.41m (263’ 10”)       Pasadena, USA           8 Aug 1953

81.75m (268’ 2”)         Modesto, USA            21 May 1955

Bud Held, a student at Stanford University, was the NCAA champion for three years (1948-50) and AAU champion six times (1949, 1951, 1953-55, and 1958). At the 1952 Olympics Held threw 68.42 meters (224’ 6”), well below his best, to finish ninth, country-man Cy Young won with 73.78 meters (242’ 1”).

Held and his brother Dick became active in the design of the javelin. They constructed a longer, slimmer implement, which was hollow in the center and had more surface area.

With this „Held” Javelin, Bud Held became the first man to throw over 80 meters when he threw 80.41 meters (263’ 10”) at John Muir Collage, Pasadena, Texas. He was Pan-American champion in 1955 (69.78 meters, 228’ 11”) and that year increased the world record at the California Relays to 81.75 meters (268’ 2”).

Unfortunately, when the U.S. Olympic trials came around in June 1956 (five months before the Olympics started), Held was injured and missed selection. In the following September he achieved a lifetime best of 82.29 meters (270’ 0”), which would have been good enough for second place at the Olympics. But under the rigid U.S. selection policy, it was too late, and he missed the Games.

Eventually, the IAAF banned the Held javelin and decided that only traditional wooden Finnish or Swedish designs would be used.

Held continues to compete in masters competitions. In 1970, Held set a United States national masters javelin record of 229 feet 3 inches (69.88 m). On October 4, 2008 at the Club West Masters Track meet in Santa Barbara, Held set the age 80+ World Record in the pole vault adding to the M75 World Record he already holds. He is also ranked in the discus.

source: World Record Breakers in Track & Field Athletics

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