Olympic Champion has found a new sport

Posted on | April 15, 2014 | Category: Arena

EM sprint kvalifisering Lørdag 12, april 2014 Sesimbra i Portugal  Jüri Tarmak
Olympic Champion Jüri Tarmak is an eager orienteer. Photo: Erik Borg

42 years ago Jüri Tarmak high-jumped into the history of international sport, but now the Estonian’s main sport is with map and compass. “Orienteering is number one and athletics number two”, Jüri says.

In Münich in 1972 the Estonian became Olympic Champion in high jump – as a member of the Soviet Union team. 42 years later he is present at the European Championships in Portugal. “Two of the boys from a training group I have are taking part”, the 67-year-old says. His athletes are both looking forward to the World Championships on home ground in 2017. It isn’t this year his athletes are expecting to get the best results.

When Tarmak moved back to Estonia after being in Leningrad he looked for a new sport. He wanted to be active and he found orienteering. “I started with orienteering in the 1990’s. It’s good to be both physically active and to have to think at the same time”.

Now he has an injury in one foot and has to take it a bit easy, but he has really run a lot. Just ask him about his records in number of races run: “One year I took part in 102 races. My record month is a July where I competed on 28 of the 31 days. That year I took part in O-Ringen, FIN5 and a lot of other races”.

In Tallinn his club organises races every week and his family is also very involved in the sport of orienteering. His son Jaan Tarmak is in charge for the World Masters Championships in Estonia in 2016.

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