DIETRICH GERNER

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Plaque name:

DIETRICH GERNER

Location:

Rua Av. Pedro Teixeira, 400-Bloco, 3 Dom Pedro I-Villa Olimpica, Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil. , 69040-000

Plaque awarded:

26/09/2019

Reason

Plaque category - Legend

Eventhough he was born in Germany, Dietrich Ulrich Heindrich Gerner was nominated by CONSUDATLE to be the first coaching legend from South America to receive a World Athletics Heritage Plaque. Gerner was the trainer, teacher and friend of Brazil's two-time Olympic triple jump champion Adhemar Ferreira da Silva.

Dietrich Gerner was the coach of Sao Paulo Football Club (SPFC) in 1947. SPFC was a multi-sport club and it was there in that year he first met Adhemar who has been introduced to the triple jump by fellow SPFC member Ewald Gomes da Silva. Gomes da Silva was the captain of the SPFC team and later became president of the Sao Paolo State Athletics Federation and of the Brazilian Athletics Confederation.

Adhemar's second ever attempt landed him at 12.84m which was enough to convince Gerner of his talent. Three days later Adhemar jumped 13.50m in a local match and a star was born. By the end of 1947, under Gerner's direction he had improved to 14.77m and was state champion. The following year he leapt 15.03m to book an unexpected ticket to the 1948 London Olympic Games!

Gerner and Adhemar developed a life long close bound. "My German Dad" Adhemar liked to call him. Together in 1949 they began to explore and perfect his jumping technique using a German camera to capture sequence images to better visualise and analyse each stage of the jump.

By 1950 Gerner's advise had guided Adhemar to the first of his five career world records, two of which came when winning the 1952 Olympic Games. The last record setting performance was his 16.56m mark in 1955 which added 33cm to Leonid Shcherbokov's existing world record. That performance took Adhemar to the second of his three Pan Am games titles.

The following year Adhemar reached the summit of his remarkable career retaining his Olympic title in Melbourne. The only South American in history to retain an Olympic track and field title.

Fina a Plaque