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RIP Powerlifting Legend Jon Cole

Strength Oldschool

* Please note that is old news.

Jon Cole has passed away. Jon was one of the strongest men ever. He exelled in athletics, olympic lifting and powerlifting. He was 71 and died of a lung infection. R.I.P. Jon.

Jon Cole - Powerlifting USA

RIP Strength Legend Jon Cole

From Magnus…

A stellar athlete in his day who, for all-round physical ability may have been the best ever. A superb discus thrower and if memory serves shot-putter, an olympic lifter who powered the weights up with brute strength and only rudimentary technique totalling 1200 lbs in the olympic 3 (clean & press was still part of it then) which was within 90% plus of the world record at the time.

AND last but not least RAW powerlifts of squat 905 lbs, benchpress 580 lbs, and deadlift 885 lbs for a total of 2,370 lbs in 1972 at a bodyweight of only 283 lbs (128kg)

If anyone can find an athlete today of similar size that can do better than 90% of Jon’s totals let us know because I doubt such an animal exists – if John lifted today using WPO rules and armoured bench/squat suits his raw total could be extrapolated to a geared total of 3,000 plus lbs!!

See you later Jon, and thanks for the show while you was here“. ~ Magnus

Again from Magnus…

Great pics of Jon Cole – the top pic where he is kneeling before a 860 lb bar was taken the day of his 2,370 lb total – he got the 860 and the 885 which followed. The only lift he missed that day was a 600 lb benchpress and his 905 lb squat (first man over 900 lb in P/L competition)was deep, fast and done wearing only an olympic lifting belt and ace knee bandages which would have added virtually nothing to his poundage lifted.

On the Olympic lifts the 430 lb press was easy, followed by a 340 lb snatch done with terrible form, nothing but brute power getting it overhead, and a clean & jerk of 430 lb again in rough style (actually more like a push press). If Jon had stuck with it and got a coach to teach him good technique it’s probably realistic to speculate that he could eventually have made 500 – 390 – 520, total 1,410 at a time when only Vasily Alexeev, Rudy Mang and Serge Reding had done a little more, and those guys were seasoned superheavy weightlifters that outweighed Jon by as much as 53 lb in the case of Alexeev. 

The biggest little word in the dictionary is IF, and that was the frustrating thing about Jon; boredom made him quit things like power and olympic lifting. IF only he had stuck with them when he was in his prime for a couple of years who knows what he would have accomplished – as it is his raw totals of 2,370 power and 1,200 O Lifts are still amazing but imagine a mind-boggling combination of 2,600 and 1,410 RAW!!!” ~ Magnus

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