Hammer world record holder Yuri Sidakh dies at the age of 66

Yuri Sedikh, two-time Olympic champion and world record holder in hammer throw, has died

MOSCOW – Two-time Olympic champion in hammer throw Yuri Sedikh has died, whose 1986 world record still holds. He was 66 years old.

The Russian Track and Field Federation said Sedikh died of a heart attack early Tuesday.

Sedikh threw a world record of 86.74 meters at the European Championships in Stuttgart, Germany, which still stands. At this year’s Tokyo Olympics, all 12 finalists in the men’s hammer were born after Sidakh set the record.

Sedykh made his giant throws at a time when track and field were starting to feel the scale of performance-enhancing drug use.

Grigory Rodchenkov, the former director of Moscow’s anti-doping laboratory, wrote in a book last year that Sedikh was “a huge steroid abuser” who benefited from a Soviet cover-up. Rodchenkov said one of Sedikh’s samples contained such large traces of stanozolol that it contaminated laboratory equipment.

Sedikh denied doping. In a 2015 interview with Russian newspaper Sport Express, Sedikh said that athletes’ big throws in the 1980s were due to better coaching and the Soviet Union’s intensive talent scouting program.


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