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Igor Ter-Ovanesyan

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Title: Igor Ter-Ovanesyan  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Bob Beamon, Andrew Howe, Christian Reif, Sebastian Bayer, Athletics at the 1964 Summer Olympics – Men's long jump
Collection: 1938 Births, Athletes (Track and Field) at the 1956 Summer Olympics, Athletes (Track and Field) at the 1960 Summer Olympics, Athletes (Track and Field) at the 1964 Summer Olympics, Athletes (Track and Field) at the 1968 Summer Olympics, Athletes (Track and Field) at the 1972 Summer Olympics, Burevestnik Athletes, European Athletics Championships Medalists, Former World Record Holders in Athletics (Track and Field), Honoured Masters of Sport of the Ussr, Living People, Olympic Athletes of the Soviet Union, Olympic Bronze Medalists for the Soviet Union, Olympic Medalists in Athletics (Track and Field), People from Kiev, Russian People of Armenian Descent, Soviet Armenians, Soviet Athletics Coaches, Soviet Long Jumpers, Ukrainian People of Armenian Descent
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Igor Ter-Ovanesyan

Igor Ter-Ovanesyan
Igor Ter-Ovanesyan at the 1964 Olympics
Personal information
Born 19 May 1938 (1938-05-19) (age 78)
Kiev, Ukraine
Height 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)
Weight 78 kg (172 lb)
Sport Long jump
Club Burevestnik[1]
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s) 8.35 m (1967)[2]

Igor Aramovich Ter-Ovanesyan (Russian: Игорь Арамович Тер-Ованесян, born 19 May 1938) is a retired Soviet competitor and coach in the long jump. He is a five-time Olympian and two-time Olympic medalist in this event. In 1985 he was awarded the Order of the Badge of Honour.[1]


  • Biography 1
  • Successes 2
    • Olympics 2.1
    • European Championships 2.2
    • World Records 2.3
  • Defection target 3
  • Personal life 4
  • Notes 5
  • References 6


Ter-Ovanesyan was born in Kiev to an Armenian discus thrower, Aram Avetisovich Ter-Ovanesyan, and a Ukrainian volleyball player, Valentina Ilinskaya. His parents met at the Kiev State Institute of Physical Education, were they both taught sports-related topics. Igor took up athletics when he was 15, and within two years was included to the Soviet national team. Ter-Ovanesyan trained at Burevestnik, first in Kiev, later in Lviv, and then in Moscow. He holds a PhD and a title of Professor at the Department of Athletics, Moscow State Academy of Physical Culture. He published several sports-related books in Russian.[3]

Ter-Ovanesyan is a double Olympic bronze medalist. He won Olympic bronze medals at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome – with a jump of 8.04 meters – and at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo – with a jump of 7.99 meters. He also competed at the 1956, 1968 and 1972 Olympics and finished fourth in 1968. At the European Championships he won outdoor gold medals in 1958, 1962 and 1969, and an indoor silver medal in 1971. Ter-Ovanesyan became the first European long jumper to break the 8 meter barrier. He broke the European long jump record eight times and the world long jump record twice. In 1963, he won the U.S. Indoor Championships. Ter-Ovanesyan had the annual world's best long jumps in 1962, 1966, 1967 and 1969.[4]

After retiring from competitions, Ter-Ovanesyan became a national coach. His pupils included Ineta Radēviča, Valery Podluzhny, Wilhelmina Bardauskene and Tatyana Kolpakova.[2][5] In 1983–1989 he headed the Soviet track and field team, which broke more than ten world records during preparations for the 1984 Friendship Games.[6] He later worked as chairman of the General Council of the coaching teams of the Sports Committee of Russia. In 1994, he was appointed Deputy Chairman of the Russian Federation GKFT.[7] As of 1991, Ter-Ovanesyan is a member of the central council of IAAF (IAAF Council Member).[2][8]



European Championships

World Records

Defection target

On the eve of the Rome Olympics, fellow sprinter Dave Sime was approached by the Central Intelligence Agency and recruited to help secure Ter-Ovanesyan's defection.[9] Sime approached Ter-Ovanesyan and introduced him to a CIA agent in Rome, but that agent's manner frightened Ter-Ovanesyan off and he did not defect.[10]

Personal life

Ter-Ovanesyan has been married twice. His first marriage was to Yemelyanova Margarita Yurievna. They had a son, Igor (b. 1963), and a daughter, Karen (b. 1967). His second marriage was with Olga Klein Arturovna. In 1982, they had a daughter, Jana I. Klein.[11]


  1. ^ a b ЛЕГКАЯ АТЛЕТИКА (in Русский). Retrieved 23 January 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Igor Ter-Ovanesyan.
  3. ^ "‘Rome 1960': Politics at play in Olympic Games". Retrieved 8 July 2008. 
  4. ^ "All-Time World Rankings – Men's Long Jump" (PDF). Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  5. ^ Dolgopolov, Nikolai; Rostislav Orlov (14 January 2007). "Jumpers fly high at Moscow ‘Christmas Cup’". IAAF. Retrieved 16 January 2007. 
  6. ^ "Games open but just who is coming?". The Spokesman-Review – 17 Aug 1984. Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  7. ^ ПРАВИТЕЛЬСТВО РОССИЙСКОЙ ФЕДЕРАЦИИ (in Русский). Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  8. ^ "Igor Ter-Ovanesian". Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  9. ^ Maraniss, p. 26
  10. ^ Maraniss, p. 257
  11. ^ "Игорь Арамович Тер-Oванесян" (in Русский). Retrieved 23 January 2013. 


  • Maraniss, David (2008). Rome 1960: The Olympics That Changed the World. New York, Simon & Schuster. ISBN 1-4165-3407-5.
Preceded by
Ralph Boston
Men's Long Jump World Record Holder
10 June 1962 – 12 September 1964
Succeeded by
Ralph Boston
Preceded by
Ralph Boston
Men's Long Jump World Record Holder
19 October 1967 – 18 October 1968
Succeeded by
Bob Beamon
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Ralph Boston
Men's Long Jump Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Ralph Boston
Preceded by
Ralph Boston
Men's Long Jump Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Bob Beamon
Preceded by
Bob Beamon
Men's Long Jump Best Year Performance
alongside Waldemar Stepian

Succeeded by
Josef Schwarz
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