Charles Rigoulot

Last updated on 18 July 2017

Charles Jean Rigoulot (3 November 1903 – 22 August 1962) was a French weightlifter, professional wrestler, racing driver, and actor.

As a weightlifter he won the gold medal in the 82.5 kg division at the 1924 Summer Olympics. Between 1923 and 1926 he set eight official world records.[1] In 1924, he became the first person to clean and jerk more than 400 pounds, using the non-revolving barbells of that time. In 1930, he became the first person to complete an overhead lift of the Apollon Railway Car Wheels, an awkwardly-shaped 166 kg (366 lb) barbell-shaped set of train wheels used by the stage strongman Louis Uni, and the predecessor of "Apollon's Axle".[2]

In 1932 Rigoulot turned professional and worked as a strongman in the circus, an actor and singer in the theater.[2] As a professional wrestler he was billed as "l'homme le plus fort dans le monde" ("the strongest man in the world") and had matches with Henri DeGlane and Strangler Lewis. As a driver, he competed in the 1937 Le Mans race.

During World War II he was imprisoned after hitting a Nazi officer.[3] In 1953 he became sports director at the Cognac Distillery Ricard, he died of heart attack in 1962. His daughter Dany Rigoulot became an Olympic figure skater.[2]

Charles Rigoulot 1923.jpg
Charles Rigoulot 1923.jpg

Motorsports career results

24 Hours of Le Mans results

24 Hours of Le Mans results
Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1937 France Yves Giraud-Cabantous France Yves Giraud-Cabantous Chenard et Walcker 1.1 151 DNF DNF


  1. ^ Charles Rigoulot.
  2. ^ a b c Charles Rigoulot.
  3. ^ Wallechinsky, David (2004). The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics, Toronto: Sport Classic Books. ISBN 1-894963-34-2

External links

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