Tamara Bykova

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Tamara Bykova
Personal information
Native nameТамара Владимировна Быкова
Full nameTamara Vladimirovna Bykova
Born (1958-12-21) December 21, 1958 (age 61)
Azov, Rostov Oblast, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Height180 cm (5 ft 11 in)
Weight59 kg (130 lb)
CountrySoviet Union (19801991)
Event(s)High jump
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)2.05 m (1984)

Tamara Vladimirovna Bykova (Russian : Тамара Владимировна Быкова; born December 21, 1958) is a Russian former track and field athlete who represented the Soviet Union and competed in the high jump. She is the 1983 World Champion, the 1988 Olympic bronze medallist, and is a former world record holder, with clearances of 2.03 and 2.04 metres in 1983 and 2.05 metres in 1984. She also won silver medals at the 1982 European Championships, the 1989 and 1991 World Indoor Championships, and three times at the World Cup (1981, 1985 and 1989).



Bykova was born in Azov, Rostov, Russia and first came to international attention at the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow, where she finished ninth in the final with 1.88 meters. Six weeks later she won the Soviet championship with a jump 1.97 meters. At the 1981 World Cup in Rome, she cleared 1.96 m to finish second to West Germany's Ulrike Meyfarth, who set a new world record with a jump of 2.02 meters. At the 1982 European championship in Athens, Bykova cleared 1.97 m to again finish second to Meyfarth. Then at the 1983 European Indoor Championship in Budapest, she cleared 2.03 meters to win the gold medal and set a new world indoor record.

At the 1983 World Championships in Helsinki, Bykova and Meyfarth were the only to jumpers to clear 1.99 meters, but only Bykova could manage the next height of 2.01 meters, to become the inaugural world champion. The next meeting between the two came one month later at the European Cup in Crystal Palace in London. This time Meyfarth set a new world record by jumping over 2.03 meters, but only a few minutes later the Russian jumped over the same height to equal the world record, however she had needed one more attempt than the German and had to settle yet again for second place. Only four days later the two met again, this time in Pisa. This time though, Bykova came out on top with a new world record of 2.04 meters.

In June 1984, Bykova once again broke the world record with a clearance of 2.05 metres. This height would remain her lifetime best. The record would stand for only a month, as Bulgaria's Lyudmila Andonova cleared 2.07 metres in July. Bykova was prevented from competing at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles due to the Soviet boycott.

In 1987, Bykova won a silver medal at the World Championships in Rome, with a clearance of 2.04 metres. The winner was Stefka Kostadinova of Bulgaria, with a new world record of 2.09 metres. At the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Bykova won the bronze medal with 1.99 metres, behind the American gold medal winner Louise Ritter and the silver medallist Kostadinova.

Bykova received a three-month ban when she tested positive for the drug ephedrine at the Goodwill Games in 1990, and missed the European Championships held later that year.

International competitions

Representing Flag of the Soviet Union.svg  Soviet Union
1980 Olympic Games Moscow, Soviet Union9th1.88 m
1981 Universiade Bucharest, Romania3rd1.94 m
World Cup Rome, Italy2nd1.96 m
1982 European Indoor Championships Milan, Italy6th1.91 m
European Championships Athens, Greece2nd1.97 m
1983 European Indoor Championships Budapest, Hungary1st2.03 m
Universiade Edmonton, Canada1st1.98 m
World Championships Helsinki, Finland1st2.01 m
1984 Friendship Games Prague, Czechoslovakia3rd1.96 m
1985 Grand Prix Final Rome, Italy3rd1.89 m
World Cup Canberra, Australia2nd1.97 m
1986 Goodwill Games Moscow, Soviet Union4th1.96 m
European Championships Stuttgart, Germany16th (q)1.86 m
1987 European Indoor Championships Liévin, France2nd1.94 m
World Indoor Championships Indianapolis, United States4th1.94 m
World Championships Rome, Italy2nd2.04 m
Grand Prix Final Brussels, Belgium3rd1.97 m
1988 Olympic Games Seoul, South Korea3rd1.99 m
1989 World Indoor Championships Budapest, Hungary2nd2.02 m
World Cup Barcelona, Spain2nd1.97 m
1990 Goodwill Games Seattle, United StatesDQ (2nd)1.92 m
1991 World Indoor Championships Seville, Spain2nd1.97 m
World Championships Tokyo, Japan7th1.93 m

See also

Preceded by
Flag of Germany.svg Ulrike Meyfarth
Women's High Jump World Record Holder
August 25, 1983 July 20, 1984
Succeeded by
Flag of Bulgaria (1971 - 1990).svg Lyudmila Andonova
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Flag of Germany.svg Ulrike Meyfarth
Women's High Jump Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Flag of Bulgaria (1971 - 1990).svg Lyudmila Andonova

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