Athletics at the 1956 Summer Olympics – Men's shot put

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These are the official results of the men's shot put event at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia. The qualifying round and the final both were held on Wednesday November 28, 1956.

Fourteen shot putters from ten nations competed.

Parry O'Brien had held the world record for three years. In that time he had added a meter and a quarter to the previous record, including the current world record he had set just two months earlier. He was also the defending champion. On his first throw of the competition, he improved upon his own Olympic record with a 17.92m. Jiří Skobla moved into second place with 17.39m. In the second round, O'Brien threw a second Olympic record 18.47m, which would prove to be enough to win the competition. Bill Nieder moved into second place with a 17.61 m, improving to a 17.81m in the third round which proved to be enough to take silver. While he didn't improve, O'Brien threw consistently just behind his second round mark. His best throw was in the fifth round, his third Olympic record of the day 18.57 m (60 ft 11 in). Any of O'Brien's last five throws would have won the competition. Just before the 18.57, Nieder threw his best of 18.18m. During that fifth round, Kenneth Bantum briefly moved into bronze medal position with a 17.48m putting the American team in a position to sweep the event for the second time in a row, before Skobla threw three additional cm past him. On his final throw Skobla threw his best of 17.65m.[1]


Gold Silver Bronze
Parry O'Brien
 United States
Bill Nieder
 United States
Jiří Skobla


These were the standing world and Olympic records (in metres) prior to the 1956 Summer Olympics.

World Record 19.25 United States Parry O'Brien Los Angeles (USA) November 1, 1956
Olympic Record 17.41 United States Parry O'Brien Helsinki (FIN) July 21, 1952

Final classification[edit]

Med 1.png  Parry O'Brien (USA) 18.57 m
Med 2.png  Bill Nieder (USA) 18.18 m
Med 3.png  Jiří Skobla (TCH) 17.65 m
4.  Kenneth Bantum (USA) 17.48 m
5.  Boris Belyaev (URS) 16.96 m
6.  Erik Uddebom (SWE) 16.65 m
7.  Karl-Heinz Wegmann (EUA) 16.63 m
8.  Georgios Tsakanikas (GRE) 16.56 m
9.  Barry Donath (AUS) 16.52 m
10.  Silvano Meconi (ITA) 16.28 m
11.  Robert Hanlin (AUS) 16.08 m
12.  Barclay Palmer (GBR) 15.81 m
13.  Vladimir Loshchilov (URS) 15.62 m
14.  Raymond Thomas (FRA) 15.31 m