Kaarlo Olavi KANGASNIEMI

Finland FIN

Weightlifting

  • Olympic Medals
    1 G
  • Games participations
    3
  • First Olympic Games
    Tokyo 1964
  • Year of Birth
    1941
Olympic Results

Biography

Kaarlo Olavi KANGASNIEMI

It may seem strange, but Kaarlo Kangasniemi is the only top international heavy-class weightlifter to come from Finland (as of 2013), which is known for its strongmen and has always been successful in strength events at major internationals. Although Finland has won two other international weightlifting medals (bronzes by Jouni Grönman and Pekka Niemi), those medals were won in lighter competition at the 1984 Olympics.

Kangasniemi made his international début at the 1962 World Championships, where he finished 10th as a light-heavyweight, and then competed at every major international tournament during his career, finishing regularly in the top 10 until he won his first major international medal – middle-heavyweight bronze – at the 1968 European Championships. He next competed at the 1968 Olympic Games and won a surprising gold medal in middle-heavyweight by lifting a total of 10 kgs more than pre-tournament favorite Jaan Talts. As the Olympic Games also doubled as the World Championships, Kangasniemi was considered the 1968 World Champion and repeated that victory in 1969. He also won the European middle-heavyweight title in 1969-70, earn world light-heavyweight silver in 1971, and was Nordic middle-heavyweight champion in 1965, 1967, and 1969. He also won seven Finnish titles between 1965 and 1972 and set 18 middle-heavyweight world records from 1968-72: four in the press, eight in the snatch, and six in the total. Kangasniemi was elected as the world’s best weightlifter of 1969, best Nordic weightlifter of 1969, and best Finnish sportsman of 1968 and 1969.

After finishing his sporting career in 1973, Kangasniemi worked as a weightlifting coach and was a member of the board of the Finnish Elite Athletes Association. In 1987 he was selected to be a parliamentary candidate for the Finnish Rural Party, but was not elected. He later worked as a weightlifting commentator with the TV channel Eurosport. Kangasniemi was selected to the International Weightlifting Federation Hall of Fame in 1998.

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Olympic Results

More results
Olympic Results
Results Event Sport

Munich 1972

#6
Light-Heavyweight (≤82½ kilograms)
Light-Heavyweight (≤82½ kilograms) Weightlifting
Olympic Results
Results Event Sport

Mexico City 1968

G
Middle-Heavyweight (≤90 kilograms)
Middle-Heavyweight (≤90 kilograms) Weightlifting
Olympic Results
Results Event Sport

Tokyo 1964

#7
Light-Heavyweight (≤82½ kilograms)
Light-Heavyweight (≤82½ kilograms) Weightlifting

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