Cliff Bayer

Cliff Bayer
Medal record
Competitor for  United States
Pan American Games
Silver 1999 Winnipeg Team Foil

Cliff Bayer (born June 24, 1977, in New York City) is an American two-time Olympian foil fencer.


Fencing career

Bayer and his older brother, Greg, used to duel in their parents' living room with Luke Skywalker light sabres when they were children. Their mother, fearing damage to the furniture, took them to a fencing salle in New York City. Bayer began fencing at the age of 8, and competing internationally at the age of 16.

Cliff is now an investment banker for UBS Securities, covering the commercial aerospace industry.


In 1996, he was the NCAA Foil Champion while at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was enrolled in the Wharton School of Business.[1] He also earned an MBA from Wharton.[2]

US Championships

Bayer won the U.S. National Championship in 1995, while still a senior at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx, becoming the youngest national champion ever, at the age of 17—an honor that he held until 2007, when Gerek Meinhardt won the championship at the age of 16.[3]

He won the U.S. National Championship again in 1997, 1998, and 2000.[4][5][6]


At the 1996 Summer Olympics, Bayer placed 34th in the individual foil competition, and was a member of the U.S. foil team that finished 10th.

Entering the 2000 Summer Olympics, Bayer was ranked No. 8 in the world in foil. Bayer won his second round match over Sobczak of Poland (15–9), but lost in the third round to Young-Ho Kim (14–15), and was eliminated from the competition. placing 10th.[7] Bayer was named the 2000 U.S. Olympic Committee male Fencing Athlete of the Year.

World Cup

In May 1999, Bayer became the first American to earn a medal at a senior men's World Cup event, taking the bronze medal in Espinho, Portugal.

Three months later, in St. Petersburg, Russia, he became the first American to win a World Cup title, winning the "World Championship Cup." At that competition, he routed 3-time world champion Goloubitsky of the Ukraine 15–6 in the quarterfinals before defeating 1995 world champion Chevtchenko of Russia 10–5 in the final.[8] Bayer recalls that the Russian crowd was so shocked by the result that: "I looked into the crowd and saw 500 dropped jaws."

Bayer won a second World Cup title in April 2000 in Bonn, Germany, where defending Olympic champion Puccini of Italy was among his victims.[9]

World Championships

At the 1999 World Championships, Bayer placed 12th in the individual foil event, and 11th in team foil. In his three previous World competitions (1995, 1997, and 1998), he had not fared better than 30th.

Pan American Games

Bayer won a team silver medal at the 1999 Pan American Games in Canada.

Hall of Fame & Awards

In 1996, Bayer was named U.S. Fencer of the Year.

He was named first team All American in 1997 and 1998, and All-Ivy in 1998.[10]

Bayer was honored in 1999 as the United States Olympic Committee's Male Athlete of the Month for May, beating out canoe sprinter Nate Johnson, boxer Demetrius Hopkins, and cycler Christian Vande Velde.[11]

Bayer, who is Jewish, was the 2000 recipient of The New York Jewish Sports Hall of Fame Outstanding Jewish Scholastic Athlete of the Year Award.[12][13]

He was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 2001.[12][14]

Bayer was inducted into the Philadelphia Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.[15]

See also


  1. ^ Ralph Hickok (April 1, 2010). "History – NCAA Fencing Champions". Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  2. ^ "News". Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  3. ^ "FENCING - Bronx Prep Student, 17, Wins Foil Title". New York Times. June 7, 1995. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Fencing - National Championship - Teen-Ager Wins Women'S Finals". New York Times. June 13, 1998. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Bayer wins third U.S. title". The Daily Pennsylvanian. June 18, 1998. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  6. ^ "FENCING - New Yorker Wins An Olympic Berth". New York Times. July 10, 2000. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Flash of the Blade". August 29, 1999. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  9. ^ "FENCING - WORLD CUP - Bayer Wins Gold In the Men's Foil". New York Times. April 10, 2000. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Cliff Bayer wins USOC award". The Daily Pennsylvanian. June 17, 1999. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  12. ^ a b
  13. ^
  14. ^ Nancy Harrison (July 22, 2007). "San Diego Jewish World-issue 83". Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  15. ^ [1][dead link]

External links

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