Ivan Sergeyevich Yarygin (ya-RY-geen, Russian: Иван Сергеевич Ярыгин, IPA: [ɪˈvan sʲɪrˈɡʲeɪvʲɪtɕ jɪˈrɐɡʲɪn]; 7 November 1948 – 11 October 1997) was a Soviet and Russian heavyweight freestyle wrestler. Between 1970 and 1980 he won all his major international competitions, except for the 1970 and 1974 European championships where he placed second. Yarygin was an Olympic champion in 1972 and 1976, being the first wrestler to go through an Olympic competition with straight pin victories and no foul points, a world champion in 1973, a World Cup winner five times, has never lost a single match in World Cup competition, and a European champion in 1972 and 1975–76, and won a world cup in 1973, 1976–77 and 1979–80. He also set a record for the fastest pin victory in the World Cup history at 27 seconds. After retiring in 1980, he headed the Soviet freestyle wrestling team from 1982 to 1992 and the Russian Wrestling Federation from 1993 until his untimely death in a car crash in 1997. An exceptional upper-body wrestler, Yarygin was widely regarded for his tremendous physique and high-strength aggressive style, always aiming to pin down his opponents, with most of his stoppage wins came by way of fall achieved through rapid fireman's lift and slamming the opponent to the mat. One of the most prestigious tournaments in the World was put together in his honor - The Golden Grand Prix Ivan Yarygin Tournament is held annually in Krasnoyarsk, Russia, and has the reputation of being one hardest tournaments in the World. The Yarygin Memorial annually sees the world's best wrestlers come to Siberia, with the added element that Russia's autonomous oblasts and republics such as Dagestan and Chechnya field independent teams alongside an All-Russia selection.
Ivan Yarygin in 1976
|Native name||Иван Сергеевич Ярыгин|
|Full name||Ivan Sergeyevich Yarygin|
|Born||7 November 1948|
Ust-Kamzas, Kemerovo Oblast, Soviet Union
|Died||11 October 1997 (aged 48)|
Neftekumsk, Stavropol Krai, Russia
|Height||190 cm (6 ft 3 in)|
|Weight||100 kg (220 lb)|
Mindiashvili wrestling academy Trud Krasnoyarsk
|Coached by||Dmitry Mindiashvili|
|Updated on 2 December 2019.|
Childhood and early careerEdit
Yarygin was born as the sixth child in a family of ten siblings. Most members of his family were heavily built and physically active people. Since early age Yarygin helped his father at his blacksmith workshop. As a teenager he wanted to become a football goalkeeper, and took up wrestling only in 1966, aged 18. He then was drafted and went on to win the Soviet Armed Forces heavyweight championships in Sambo wrestling, gaining the Master of Sports degree in Sambo. He then switched to freestyle wrestling, and won 1968 RSFSR national youth championships and 1969 Soviet youth championships.
In 1970 he won the Soviet title competing in senior division, beating his main rival Vladimir Gulyutkin; he lost to Gulyutkin in 1971, but beat him again at the 1972 Olympic Trials and was selected for the Munich Olympics. At the Olympics he won all five bouts by fall, spending on the mat a little more than 7 minutes instead of 45. Three months prior to the Olympics, he won the 1972 European Championships, winning all bouts by fall. When first appeared in the United States for the 1973 World Cup and the subsequent wrestling tour, the U.S.—Soviet Olympic freestyle wrestling exhibition, where he and the USSR National Wrestling Team met the United States National Team (composed of both National AAU, Athletes in Action and NCAA Wrestling Team Championship winners,) the American press described him as "a blue-eyed, red-haired, 24-year-old wrestler from the Soviet Union who spreads 220 pounds over an awesome, statuesque frame that might have been hammered and chiseled out of a granite block cornerstone from the Tomb of Lenin." He was a flagbearer for the Soviet wrestling team while on the U.S. tour. When Yarygin wrestled Russell Hellickson (whom he had his shoulder disclocated at their previous match-up at the Olympics,) at Hellickson's hometown of Madison, Wisconsin, Yarygin let him up to prevent further injury, and wrestled just hard enough to protect himself until Hellickson finally fainted to pain.
After the Olympics, he won the 1973 World Championships, again all bouts by fall. Thus Yarygin became the only wrestler to win three consecutive major competitions, scoring only fall victories. He then lost several minor contests, and decided to retire from competition, settled in his native village of Sizaya, where he worked as a lumberjack in Taiga forest. Outdoor activity helped him to regain his strength and confidence, and he came back in 1974 to continue his victorious streak. His next Olympic victory in 1976 was less spectacular because he wrestled the whole tournament with two broken ribs. After that Yarygin was selected as the Soviet Olympic flag bearer at the closing ceremony.
Coming to the Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania for the match-up versus the American National Wrestling Team, Soviet wrestlers were welcomed officially by Mayor Walter Lisman, and were given a key to Wilkes-Barre by the mayor.
While preparing for the Moscow Olympics Yarygin realized that the young Soviet wrestler Ilya Mate has a better chance for the gold medal (which he indeed won). Yarygin retired from competition permanently in 1980 and became a wrestling coach. In 1982–92, he trained the Soviet freestyle wrestling team, and in 1993–1997 headed the Russian Wrestling Federation. He was a key organizer of the 1997 World Wrestling Championships in Krasnoyarsk.
International competition recordEdit
|International competition record (incomplete)|
|1980 World Cup Winner at 100kg|
|Win||Larry Bielenberg||Fall||1:14||1980-03-30||1980 World Cup||Toledo, Ohio||Centennial Hall|
|Loss||Howard Harris||Decision||7–8||1980-03-26||U.S.—Soviet all-star dual meet||Glens Falls, New York||Glens Falls Civic Center|
|Win||Fred Bohna||Fall||1:07||1979-04-07||Athletes in Action challenge||Anaheim, California||Anaheim Convention Center|
|Win||1979-04||U.S.—Soviet all-star series
Olympic freestyle wrestling four-city tour
|N/A||Larry Bielenberg||Decision||3–10||1979-04-02||Rapid City, South Dakota||Rushmore Plaza Civic Center|
|1979 World Cup Winner at 100kg|
|Win||Fred Bohna||Inactivity||1979-04-01||1979 World Cup||Toledo, Ohio||Centennial Hall|
|Win||John Setter||Fall||8:07||1979-03-28||U.S.—Soviet all-star series
Olympic freestyle wrestling four-city tour
|Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania||King's College Gym|
|Win||1979-03-26||New York City||Felt Forum|
|1977 World Cup Winner at 100kg|
|Win||Harold Smith||Fall||0:27||1977-03-27||1977 World Cup||Toledo, Ohio||Centennial Hall|
|1976 Olympic Gold Medalist at 100kg|
|Win||Russell Hellickson||Decision||19–13||1976-07-27||1976 Summer Olympics||Montreal||Maurice Richard Arena|
|Win||Petr Drozda||Tech Fall||5:30||1976-07-27|
|Win||Daniel Verník||Tech Fall||1:26||1976-07-27|
|1976 European Champion at 100kg|
|Win||Dimo Kostov||N/A||N/A||1976-04-18||1976 European Championship||Leningrad||Yubileyny Sports Palace|
|Win||1976-03-||U.S.—Soviet all-star series
Olympic freestyle wrestling tour
|Win||Jeff Smith||Fall||0:23||1976-03-04||East Lansing, Michigan||Jenison Fieldhouse|
|1976 World Cup Winner at 100kg|
|Win||Greg Wojciechowski||1976-03-01||1976 World Cup||Toledo, Ohio||Toledo Field House|
|1975 European Champion at 100kg|
|Win||Harald Büttner||N/A||N/A||1975-05-01||1975 European Championship||Ludwigshafen|
|1974 European Silver Medalist at 100kg|
|Loss||Harald Büttner||N/A||N/A||1974-06-24||1974 European Championship||Madrid||Palacio de Deportes|
|Win||1974-04-05||U.S.—Soviet all-star series
Olympic freestyle wrestling
|Win||Jim Duschen||Fall||>3:00||1974-04-02||Chattanooga, Tennessee||University of Tennessee Arena|
|Win||Buck Deadrich||Fall||8:41||1974-03-30||Berkeley, California||Harmon Gym|
|Win||Larry Amundson||Fall||2:48||1974-03-27||San Diego, California||Peterson Gym|
|Guest||Soviet wrestling clinic demonstration||1974-03-23||Long Beach, California||Long Beach State Gym|
|Win||Buck Deadrich||Fall||>3:00||1974-03-22||Long Beach Arena|
|Win||Buck Deadrich||Fall||2:34||1974-03-19||New York City||Felt Forum|
|1973 World Champion at 100kg|
|Win||Buck Deadrich||Fall||>6:00||1973-09-06||1973 World Championship||Tehran||Aryamehr Indoor Stadium|
|1973 World University Games Champion at 100kg|
|Win||Buck Deadrich||N/A||N/A||1973-08-15||1973 World University Games||Moscow||Lenin Palace of Sports|
|Win||Henk Schenk||Decision||6–3||1973-06-01||U.S.—Soviet all-star series
Olympic freestyle wrestling
|New York City||Felt Forum|
|Win||Nick Curollo||Fall||1:04||1973-05-30||Brockport, New York||Brockport State Gym|
|Win||Greg Wojciechowski||Decision||3–1||1973-05-26||Columbus, Ohio||St. John Arena|
|Win||Russell Hellickson||Default (9–0)||>6:00||1973-05-23||Madison, Wisconsin||Wisconsin Field House|
|1973 World Cup Winner at 100kg|
|Win||Russell Hellickson||Fall||1:56||1973-05-20||1973 World Cup||Toledo, Ohio||Toledo Field House|
|1972 Olympic Gold Medalist at 100kg|
|Win||József Csatári||Fall||2:04||1972-08-31||1972 Summer Olympics||Munich||Messe München|
|1972 European Champion at 100kg|
|Win||Vasil Todorov||Fall||N/A||1972-04-24||1972 European Championship||Katowice||Spodek Arena|
|1970 European Silver Medalist at 100kg|
|Loss||Ahmet Ayık||N/A||N/A||1970-06-09||1970 European Championship||East Berlin|
Death and legacyEdit
Yarygin was killed in a car crash in 1997, crashing his car into a roadside-parked heavy truck. Earlier in 1990, an annual wrestling tournament in his honor has been initiated in Krasnoyarsk, the city where he lived since 1966; in 1998 a sports venue in Krasnoyarsk has been renamed into the Ivan Yarygin Sports Palace, and in March 2002 his monument was opened in the city. His other monuments were installed in Moscow in 1998, in Stavropol Krai (near the place of his death) in 2012, and in Abakan in 2013. A secondary school and a wrestling complex in Moscow are named after Yarygin. In 2010 Yarygin was inducted into the FILA International Wrestling Hall of Fame.
- Yarygin, Ivan (URS). iat.uni-leipzig.de
- Сизую я считаю своей малой родиной. Yarygin Museum
- United Press International (March 21, 1974). "U.S. wrestlers meet Soviets in Long Beach". Progress Bulletin: 19.
- Associated Press (March 26, 1980). "Soviet Coach Is Optimistic". Fayetteville Northwest Arkansas Times: 22.
- The record later was beaten by Jim Jackson, who pinned Japanese heavyweight Yasuori Ominato in 17 seconds, April 1, 1978. See: United Press International (April 2, 1978). "U.S. Leads Cup Wrestling": 47. Cite journal requires
- "Ivan Yarygin". sports-reference.com. Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 16 October 2015. Retrieved 26 September 2015.
- "Notes". The Post-Crescent. 16 (31): 36. August 1, 1976.
- Lucas, Mike (May 23, 1973). "Soviet Matmen Land Improvement of U.S. Team". The Capital Times. 112 (138): 24.
- Hillstrom, Eric (May 23, 1973). "Soviet Matmen Laud Improvement of US Team". Madison Capital Times: 22.
- Lucas, Mike (May 24, 1973). "Mighty Soviet Matmen Whip U.S. Team, 17 to 3". The Capital Times. 112 (139): 20.
- "Scaling a crazy mountain". Sports Illustrated. 38 (23): 94–98. June 11, 1973.
- Иван Ярыгин. Yarygin Wrestling Museum
- Cater, Dave (March 27, 1979). "MRussian wrestlers arrive". The Times Leader: 1.
- Details of Ivan Yarygin profile available at the United World Wrestling Database.
- Setter was an alternate for Jeff Blatnick, who withdrew due to health issues.
- Памятник Ивану Ярыгину в Абакане. Yarygin Museum
- МБОУ Московская средняя школа им. Ивана Ярыгина. Yarygin Museum
- Ivan Yarygin at Olympedia
- Ivan Yarygin at Olympics at Sports-Reference.com (archived)
- Ivan Yarygin at databaseOlympics.com (archived)
- Ivan Yarygin at United World Wrestling
| Flagbearer for Soviet Union (closing ceremony)
Montreal 1976 (with Vasily Alekseyev)