Jānis Lūsis, Soviet Union (Latvia)

Jānis Lūsis

World Records: 91.98m (301' 9") Saarijarvi, Finland 23 Jun 1968

93.80m (307' 9") Stockholm, Sweden 6 Jul 1972

Janis Lusis is a Latvian who was 12 times Soviet champion. He is the only male athlete to win an even in the European Championships four times (1962, 1966, 1969, 1971).

He was the 1964 Olympic bronze medalist, and his first world record came in 1968, perhaps his best-ever season. The top 11 throws that year were all Lusis's. In Finland he added 26 centimeters (10 inches) to Pedersen's four-year-old world record. However the Olympic Games that year were no walkover. Lusis made the winning throw only in the sixth and final round.

Four years later he achieved his second world record in Sweden. He went on to the Munich Olympics that year as a favorite. In the final he led until local hero Klaus Wolfermann threw 90.48 meters (296' 10") on his fifth throw. Lusis couldn't quite match it; his last throw fell short of this by two centimeters.

Lusis was also a competent decathlete and was regarded by his peers as the gentleman of the sport. He married Elvire Ozolina, the 1960 Olympic javelin championt and world record holder. They spent three years coaching in Madagascar between 1987 and 1990.

source: World Record Breakers in Track & Field Athletics

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