Remembering Triple Jump Legend Viktor Saneyev: 3-Time Olympic Champion

Renowned Triple Jump Great Viktor Saneyev Passes Away at 76

In a deeply saddening announcement, World Athletics has shared the news of the passing of three-time Olympic triple jump champion and former world record-holder Viktor Saneyev at the age of 76.

Born on October 3, 1945, in Georgia, Saneyev’s illustrious athletic career spanned over a decade, during which he etched his name in the annals of triple jump history. His Olympic triumphs came at three consecutive Games, with gold medals in Mexico City (1968), Munich (1972), and Montreal (1976). Saneyev also added an Olympic silver medal to his tally in Moscow in 1980, where he narrowly missed out on a fourth gold at the age of 34.

Saneyev’s Olympic debut in 1968 was nothing short of remarkable. In a competition that saw the global mark improved four times, the Georgian jumper secured gold with a world record leap of 17.39m, breaking the previous record he had set earlier that day. His reign at the top continued in the following years, as he reclaimed the world record in 1972 with a jump of 17.44m, a mark he would hold for the next three years.

Saneyev’s dominance extended beyond the Olympic stage, as he claimed two European titles in 1969 and 1974, and six European indoor championships. After retiring from competitive athletics following the 1980 Olympics, he continued to be involved in the sport, working for the Dynamo Tbilisi club and later as a coach in Australia, where he passed away.

The triple jump great is survived by his wife Yana and their son Alex, leaving behind an unparalleled legacy as one of the greatest athletes in the history of the sport.

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