Ricky Bruch

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Ricky Bruch
Medal record
Men’s Athletics
Competitor for  Sweden
Olympic Games
Bronze 1972 Munich Discus
European Championships
Silver 1969 Athens Discus
Bronze 1974 Rome Discus

Björn Rickard "Ricky" Bruch (2 July 1946 – 30 May 2011) was a Swedish athlete (discus) and actor.

Bruch was born in Örgryte, Gothenburg, grew up in Skåne, and was later a long-time resident of Malmö.

Bruch made his dramatic breakthrough in the mid-1960s. His main discipline was the shotput, and later the discus, as he joined the ranks of the world's greatest in the early 1970s. The highlight of his career came in 1972, when he equalled the world record of 68.40 metres at the DN games in Stockholm and, later that season, won a bronze medal at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich.

Throughout his career, Bruch was known as being both outspoken and controversial. He readily changed his opinions on various matters, and represented around a dozen athletics teams, including his own IK Diskus. Bruch was a solid athlete, but failed to achieve the greatest success possible in major international events. Arguably, Bruch's greatest successes were Olympic bronze in 1972 along with silver and bronze at the European Championships in Athletics. Bruch equaled the world record in 1972 with a throw of 68.40 metres. His personal best (71.26 metres in autumn 1984) remains the Swedish record and puts him ninth in the all-time performers list. As well as achieving his sporting career and his turbulent personal life, Bruch also acted in light-entertainment films, debuting in the Italian action comedy film Anche gli angeli tirano di destro and appearing in a minor role in the film version of Ronia the Robber's Daughter.

His autobiography Gladiatorns kamp (The Gladiator's Battle) was printed in 1990, and an anthology of his poetry, Själ och kropp: Dikter (Body and Soul: Poems), has also been published.

After a few years away from the glare of publicity in the early 1980s, he returned to the spotlight at the age of 38 in the autumn of 1984 - returning to form, he managed a number of throws over the 70 metre mark. He achieved his personal record of 71.26 metres in November 1984 at a competition in Malmö. At the Swedish Championships in Västerås in 1985, Bruch was involved in a dispute with Anders Borgström, the team captain at the time. Bruch's willingness to speak his mind resulted, effectively, in his career being over. However, he continued to appear in the media from time to time, most recently in a TV4 documentary from July 2005.

Bruch died on 30 May 2011 from pancreatic cancer.[1]

References[edit]

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Records
Preceded by
United States Jay Silvester
Men's Discus World Record Holder
equalled the 68.40 m mark from Jay Silvester

5 July 1972 – 14 March 1975
Succeeded by
South Africa John van Reenen
Preceded by
Czechoslovakia Ludvík Daněk
Men's Discus European Record Holder
21 September 1969 – 21 May 1976
Succeeded by
East Germany Wolfgang Schmidt