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Béla Szepes

Full name: Béla (Vojtech-) Szepes (Strauch-)
Gender: Male
Height: 5-10 (178 cm)
Weight: 157 lbs (71 kg)
Born: September 5, 1903 in Spišská Nová Ves, Košice, Slovakia
Died: June 20, 1986 in Budapest, Budapest, Hungary
Affiliations: MAC, Budapest (HUN)
Country: HUN Hungary
Sport: Cross Country Skiing, Nordic Combined, Athletics

Related Olympians: Brother of Gyula Szepes.

Medals: 1 Silver (1 Total)

Biography

Béla Szepes, or Vojtech Strauch to give him his original Slovak name, was a pioneer in Hungarian winter sports but later became better known as one of the world’s top javelin throwers. He first came to prominence as the winner of the inaugural Hungarian national ski jumping championship, a title he won five times in all, and went on to complete in that discipline at the 1924 Winter Olympic Games in Chamonix. In truth his first Olympic experience was underwhelming as he failed to finish the 18 km cross-country skiing event and was a lowly 23rd of 25 in the ski jumping portion of Nordic combination. From then on his career as a javelin thrower took precedence and he won the first of his five national titles in 1925. Szepes was ranked in the world’s top 10 from 1926 to 1930 with a personal best of 66.70m recorded at a time when he was based in Berlin. As well as his Olympic silver medal from 1928 he also won three AAA javelin championships (1925, 1927, 1929) on visits to Great Britain.

Following his return to Hungary in 1933 he worked as a ski instructor, as a journalist and cartoonist with a variety of newspapers and, from 1938, as coach to the national athletics team. After the Second World War he concentrated on his career as a graphic artist and his cartoons and caricatures were very popular in his home country. He later branched out into designing sporting trophies including the original trophy for the Europa Cup athletics competition.

Personal Best\: JT – 66.70 (1929).

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Cross Country Skiing Men's 18 kilometres Hungary HUN AC DNF
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Men's Individual Hungary HUN AC DNF
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Men's Javelin Throw Hungary HUN 2 Silver

Men's 18 kilometres

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Cross Country Skiing Hungary Final Standings AC DNF

Men's Individual

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank PTS D J1S J2S J3S
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Hungary Final Standings AC DNF
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Hungary Cross Country Skiing, 18 kilometres AC DNF
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Hungary Ski Jumping, Normal Hill 23 10.478
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Hungary Ski Jumping, Normal Hill Jump 1 10 14.956 39.5 15.125 15.620 14.125
1924 Winter 20 Chamonix Nordic Combined Hungary Ski Jumping, Normal Hill Jump 2 23 fall 6.000 5.000 6.000 7.000

Men's Javelin Throw

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank D
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round 2 65.26
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round One NP 62.50
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round Two NP 65.26
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round Three NP 56.00est
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round Four NP foul
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round Five NP 62.50est
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Final Round Round Six NP 54.00est
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Qualifying Round 2 QU 65.26
1928 Summer 24 Amsterdam Athletics Hungary Qualifying Round Group B 1 65.26
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