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Wrestling at the 1924 Paris Summer Games:

Men's Light-Heavyweight, Freestyle

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Host City: Paris, France
Venue(s): Winter Velodrome, Paris
Date Started: July 11, 1924
Date Finished: July 14, 1924
Format: Single-elimination tournament with separate single-elimination tournaments for second- and third-place. Second-place tournament conducted among those losing to the winner. Third-place tournament conducted among those losing to the winner or runner-up.

Gold: USA John Spellman
Silver: SWE Rudolf Svensson
Bronze: SUI Charles Courant


Sweden’s [Carl Westergren] competed in this class. He had won gold at Antwerp in Greco-Roman middleweight, had already won the light-heavyweight Greco title in Paris, and in 1932 won the unlimited Greco-Roman class to become one of the few Olympic wrestlers with three gold medals. But this was a rare freestyle appearance for him and he lost in the semi-finals to little-known American [John Spellman]. Spellman then defeated Sweden’s [Rudolf Svensson] for the gold medal. Spellman later became a professional wrestler and football player, playing in the NFL for eight seasons with the Providence Steamrollers and Boston Redskins.

Svensson also competed in Greco-Roman in Paris, losing the final in this weight class to Westergren. In the freestyle second-place Bergvall tournament, Svensson turned the tables on Westergren in the first round, and then defeated Britain’s [Walter Wilson] for the silver, giving him two wrestling silver medals in Paris. Switzerland’s [Charles Courant], the silver medalist in this event in 1920, had lost to Svensson in the semi-finals of the main tournament and had two walkovers in the third-place tournament to win bronze.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 John Spellman 24 United States USA Gold
2 Rudolf Svensson 25 Sweden SWE Silver
3 Charles Courant 28 Switzerland SUI Bronze
4T Joseph Hutmacker Belgium BEL
4T Iisakki Mylläri 29 Finland FIN
6T Walter Wilson Great Britain GBR
6T Carl Westergren 28 Sweden SWE
8 George Rumpel 22 Canada CAN
9T Fabio Del Genovese 21 Italy ITA
9T Poul Hansen 32 Denmark DEN
11T J. Baillot France FRA
11T Marcel Kappeler France FRA
11T Victor Lay 26 Great Britain GBR
11T Fritz Roth Switzerland SUI
11T Charles Strack 24 United States USA