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Dainis Kūla

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameDainis•Kūla
Used nameDainis•Kūla
Other namesDainis Elmarovich Kula, Дайнис Элмарович Кула
Born28 April 1959 in Ventspils (LAT)
Measurements190 cm / 98 kg
AffiliationsVentspils Daugava/VS Riga
NOC Soviet Union
Nationality Latvia


Dainis Kūla, one of the top Soviet javelin throwers in the early 1980s, continued the Soviet-Latvian dominance in men’s javelin throwing after the retirement of Jānis Lūsis. Throwing his personal best of 92.06 just a month before the 1980 Olympics, Kūla was considered as a favorite to medal at the Olympics, but was not the favorite for gold as Hungarian Ferenc Paragi had set a world record of 96.72 in the spring of 1980. In the Olympic final, which like many other field events at the 1980 Olympics had very dubious officiating, Paragi threw only 79.52 to place 10th, and Kūla won Olympic gold with a throw of 91.20. Besides his Olympic gold, Kūla won golds at the 1981 and 1983 Universiade, and the 1981 World Cup, adding a bronze at the 1983 World Championships. While preparing for the 1984 Olympics, Kūla severely injured his hand and took two years to recover. While injured, Kūla was dropped from the Soviet national team, but after recovering continued to compete in local tournaments.

After the fall of the Soviet Union, Kūla competed at the 1993 World Championships, representing a newly independent Latvia, but was past his prime and did not get past qualifying. Kūla won Soviet titles in 1981-83, and was the Latvian SSR champion in 1979-80 and 1983 and was selected as Latvian athlete of the year in 1980 and 1981. After finishing his sports career, Kūla became a successful businessman. An annual javelin throwing competition is now held in Ventspils in his honor.

Personal Best: JT – 92.06 (1980).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal Nationality As
1980 Summer Olympics Athletics URS LAT Dainis Kūla
Javelin Throw, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold

Special Notes