Ruth Fuchs - East Germany - Double Olympic Games Javelin Champion.

Photo/Foto: George Herringshaw

Date: 20 June 1974

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      Saturday, 14 December 1946
      Egeln ,Saxony-Anhalt, Germany.
  • East Germany
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Ruth FUCHS - East Germany - Double Olympic Games Javelin Champion.


Ruth Fuchs totally dominated the javelin throw in the international arena during the 1970s, winning two Olympic titles, two European titles, and setting six world records. From the days of competing as a junior under her maiden name of Gamm, Ruth steadily improved her performances prior to winning the bronze medal at the 1971 European Championships in Helsinki with a throw of 59.16m. The following year, Fuchs broke her first world record in quite remarkable circumstances. Ewa Gryziecka (Poland) broke the 8 year-old world record of Yelena Gorchakova (Soviet Union) at 5.45pm on 11 June 1972 with a throw of 62.70m at an international match in Bucharest. Only 35 minutes late, at 6.20pm, Fuchs smashed Gryziecka's newly set world record in an international match in Potsdam, setting a new global standard of 65.06m.


At the Olympic Games in Munich held later that year, Fuchs won the gold medal easily with and Olympic record distance of 63.88m, the second best throw in history behind her own world record. If there was any question as to who was the new Queen of javelin throwing, Fuchs quickly dispelled them in the European Cup final at Edinburgh on 7 September 1973, when her first throw in the competition reached 66.10m, increasing her own world record by over a metre. Fuchs was a stalwart supporter of international matches for her country, regularly competing in competition, including an easy win in an East Germany v United Kingdom match at London (Crystal Palace) on 20 June 1974 (see photo above) with a throw of 65.58m. Fuchs distanced herself further from the rest of the world's javelin throwers at the 1974 European Championships in Rome on 3 September, where she won the gold medal with another new world record throw of 67.22m. (Ron Casey)



By the end of 1974, there was no doubt that Ruth Fuchs was the best javelin thrower in the world, having won the Olympic and European titles in the preceding three years, as well as setting three new world records. As the rest of the world's throwers tried to close the gap on her, Fuchs drew further away from them. At an Olympic Test meet in Berlin on 10 July 1976, Fuchs set her fourth world record, reaching a distance of 69.12m. Two weeks later at the Olympic Games in Montreal, Fuchs gave her opposition no chance of beating her, sealing her second Olympic gold medal on her first throw with a new Olympic record of 65.94m. The following year, in the World Cup at Dusseldorf on 2 September 1977, it seemed that Ruth's winning streak in major international championships might come to an end, when she was only lying fourth at the start of the fourth round.


However, Fuchs recovered in the final round with a throw of 62.36m (see photo above photo G.H. © 2nd September  1977) to win the gold medal. At the 1978 European Championships in Prague, Ruth easily won her second European title, producing the year's longest throw of 69.16m. Fuchs had relinquished her world record in 1977 to Kathy Schmidt (USA), but on 13 June 1979, Ruth regained the record with a throw of 69.52m at an Olympic Day meet in Dresden. Early in the 1980 season, Fuchs set her final world record of 69.96m at Split on 29 April. However, Fuchs' days of dominance were quickly coming to an end. She lost her world record two weeks before the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow to Tatyana Biryulina (Soviet Union), and other athletes were also approaching her best mark. At Moscow, plagued by back injury, Fuchs could only finish in 8th place, prompting her subsequent retirement. (Ron Casey)


Meisterschaft Rekord 1971 - 1980.



Speer Endrunde {Frauen}.

Europameisterschaft 1971

1. Daniela JAWORSKA   POL   61.00m.
2. Aneli KOLOSKA   FRG   59.40m.
3. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   59.16m.
4. Angel RANKY   HUN   57.44m.
5. Anneliese GERHARDS   FRG   55.98m.
6. Eva GRYZIECKA   POL   55.96m.



Speer Endrunde {Frauen}.

Olympische Spiele 1972

1. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   63.88m.
2. Jacqueline TODTEN   GDR   62.54m.
3. Kathryn SCHMIDT   USA   59.94m.
4. Liutvian MOLLOVA   BUL   59.36m.
5. Natasa URBANCIC   YUG   59.06m.
6. Eva JANKO   AUT   58.56m.
7. Ewa GRYZIECKA   POL   57.00m.
8. Svetlana KOROLYOVA   SOV   56.36m.



Speer Endrunde {Frauen}.

Europameisterschaft 1974

1. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   67.22m.
2. Jacqueline TODTEN   GDR   62.10m.
3. Natasa URBANCIC   YUG   61.66m.
4. Lutwian MOLLOVA   BUL   60.80m.
5. Sabine KARGEL   GDR   57.10m.
6. Felicia KINDER   POL   57.02m.



Speer Endrunde {Frauen}.

Olympische Spiele 1976

1. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   65.94m.
2. Marion BECKER   GER   64.70m.
3. Kathryn SCHMIDT   USA   63.96m.
4. Jacqueline HEIN   GDR   63.08m.
5. Sabine SEBROWSKI   GDR   63.08m.
6. Svetlana BABICH   SOV   59.42m.
7. Nadezhda YAKUBOVICH   SOV   59.16m.
8. Karin SMITH   USA   57.50m.



Speer Endrunde {Frauen}.

Europameisterschaft 1978

1. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   69.16m.
2. Tessa SANDERSON   GBR   62.40m.
3. Ute HOMMOLA   GDR   62.32m.
4. Ute RICHTER   GDR   62.04m.
5. Eva ZORGO   ROM   61.14m.
6. Eva HELMSCHMIDT   FRG   60.96m.



Women's Javelin Final.

Olympic Games 1980

1. Maria RUENES   CUB   68.40m.
2. Saida GUNBA   SOV   67.76m.
3. Ute HOMMOLA   GDR   66.56m.
4. Ute RICHTER   GDR   66.54m.
5. Ivanka VANCHEVA   BUL   66.38m.
6. Tatyana BIRYULINA   SOV   65.08m.
7. Eva RADULY-ZORGO   ROM   64.08m.
8. Ruth FUCHS   GDR   63.94m.