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September 25, 2013
World's oldest Olympic champion celebrates 100th birthday

Hungarian water polo player and world's oldest Olympic champion Sandor Tarics (center), recently celebrated his 100th birthday. Photo/mob.hu
by Dezso Dobor, AIPS Executive Committee member

BELVEDERE, September 25, 2013 - The Hungarian Olympic Committee recently organized a special ceremony for Sandor Tarics, the world’s oldest Olympic Champion, who celebrated his 100th birthday on September 23, 2013. The unforgettable celebration was held near his home in Belvedere, close to San Francisco.

Bence Szabo, General Secretary of the Hungarian Olympic Committee and two-time Olympic fencer, spoke about the gold medalist of the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, who was a member of the winning Hungarian water polo team. Szabo mentioned Tarics as his Olympic companion.

While guests were giving presents, emotions grew bigger and stronger. The celebrated legend received a special Hungarian national bathrobe with his name on it, vests, and wine (an award-winning Tokaji from 1994).

Dr. Denes Kemeny, president of the Hungarian Water Polo Federation, said to be proud of the fact that the world's oldest Olympic champion is a Hungarian water polo player.

“Maybe, it is a surprise for lots of people that such a little nation like Hungary has the oldest Olympic champion. The fact he is a water polo player is rather less surprising, because every fourth Hungarian gold medal winner is an Olympic Champion in this sport,” added the former head coach, who won three Olympic gold medals with the Hungarian men’s water polo team from 2008-2008.

Dr. Kemeny said Tarics was the typical Hungarian water polo player, who considered learning very important and as a result of his studies, Tarics became a famous architect. Dr. Kemeny gave Tarics a very unique gift, a special tableau with pictures of all nine Hungarian Olympic champion water polo teams, with Sandor Tarics in the middle.

Kemeny invited Tarics to next year’s European Water Polo Championships, which will be held in Budapest, and the 2021 World Championships, which were awarded to Budapest as well.

Having finished the memorable party with his friends, Tarics drove home in his Mercedes, with a GOLD 36 plate number on it.
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