Wednesday, February 13, 2002

From Chamonix to Salt Lake City
Looking back on great moments from Winter Olympic history
Author Info

Chamonix, France

Initially organized as an International Winter Sports Week, the Games at Chamonix were not officially recognized as the first Winter Olympics by the International Olympic


Committee until 1925. Five sports were represented: Nordic skiing, figure skating, speed skating, bobsled and hockey.
Canada established its reign as hockey champions by winning the gold in the first four Winter Olympics.
Anders Haugen (United States) was logged in as coming in fourth in the ski jump, but a calculation error discovered in 1974 showed he really placed third. At age 83, Haugen was awarded his bronze medal.
Charles Jewtraw
(United States) won the United States’ only gold medal in the 500-meter speed skating event.

St. Moritz, Switzerland
The second Winter Olympics used the facilities of an established ski resort. It also was the first time since World War I that Germans were admitted back into any Olympic competition.
The Games at St. Moritz were the only time that bobsled teams could have five men instead of four. The United States placed first and second in the event.
At age 15, Sonja Henie (Norway) won the first of three consecutive gold medals in figure skating.

Lake Placid, United States
Due to the Depression, turnout was low, with only 17 nations participating. Half of the athletes were from the United States or Canada. Dog sledding was included as a demonstration sport.
John Shea (United States) won golds in the 500-meter and 1,500-meter speed skating events.
The U.S. bobsled team captured gold for the second time in a row. Team member Eddie Eagan became the only person to win a gold medal in both the Winter and Summer Olympics. He already had a gold in boxing from the 1920 Summer Games.

Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany


The Germans saw these Winter Games as a prelude to the Summer Games in Berlin. An attempt by German emigrants in the United States for a national boycott failed.
Ivan Brown and Alan Washbond (United States) won gold in the two-man bobsled.
Great Britain’s hockey team toppled the Canadian hold on gold.
Sonja Henie (Norway) won her third consecutive gold medal, making her the most successful individual woman figure skater.

The Games were scheduled to be held in Sapporo, Japan, but war with China caused Japan to pull out. Germany volunteered, but World War II forced cancellation of the Winter Olympics until 1948.

St. Moritz, Switzerland
The popularity of Alpine skiing increased and slalom and downhill events were added. The winter pentathlon (cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, fencing, shooting and horse riding)was held as a demonstration sport and was not successful.
Henri Oreiller (France) won two golds and one bronze in Alpine skiing and was the most successful athlete of the 1948 Winter Games.
Barbara Ann Scott (Canada) became the first North American to win a gold in figure skating.
Gretchen Fraser (United States) captured gold in the women’s slalom, the United States’ first skiing medal.

Oslo, Norway
Germany and Japan were allowed to compete for the first time since World War II. The Oslo Games marked the first time the Olympics were held in a Scandinavian country.
Andrea Mead (United States) was victorious in the slalom and giant slalom, becoming the first U.S. athlete to win two golds in a Winter Olympics.
Hjalmar Andersen (Norway) won golds in the 1,500-meter, 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter speed skating events.
Richard Button (United States) won his second gold and was the first to perform a triple jump in the figure skating competition.

Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy
An Italian television station provided the first Winter Olympic live coverage. “Eurovision” allowed parts of central Europe to watch competition.


The United States swept the men’s figure skating competition. Gold went to Hayes Alan Jenkins, silver to Ronald Robertson and bronze to David Jenkins, younger brother of Hayes.
Toni Sailer (Austria) won three gold medals in Alpine skiing.
The new Soviet hockey team upset Canada in the finals and took the gold undefeated.

Squaw Valley, United States
The opening and closing ceremonies were stage-managed by Walt Disney, chairman of the Olympic Pageantry Committee. South Africa was represented for the first and last time until 1994. Figure skating events moved indoors.
The U.S. hockey team defeated Canada and captured gold for the first time.
Georg Thoma (Germany) became the first non-Scandinavian to win the Nordic combined.
Barbara Wagner and Robert Paul (Canada) won the gold in pairs figure skating.

Innsbruck, Austria


Computers helped officials time and judge events. Mild weather prompted the Austrian military to truck in snow. Luge made its Olympic debut.
Lidia Skoblikova (U.S.S.R.) captured all the golds in women’s speed skating.
Ortun Enderlein (Germany) won gold in the first women’s Olympic luge event.

Grenoble, France


For the first time there were two separate German teams competing in an Olympics.
Peggy Fleming (United States) took home the gold in women’s figure skating.
U.S. speed skaters Mary Meyers, Dianne Holum and Jennifer Fish triple-tied for silver in the 500-meter event.
Jean-Claude Killy (France), the host country’s favorite son, won gold medals in all three Alpine skiing events. The Games were dubbed the “Killympics.”

Sapporo, Japan
The Sapporo Games were the first Winter Olympics held outside of Europe and the United States. They also marked the first time all three medals in one discipline were won by a non-European country (Japan, in the normal hill ski jump).
Galina Kulakova (U.S.S.R.) captured three gold medals in women’s cross-country skiing.
Speed skater Dianne Holum (United States) won a gold (1,500 meters) and silver (3,000 meters). She would later coach Eric Heiden to the 1976 and 1980 Olympics.
Barbara Cochran (United States) won the gold in the women’s slalom by two-hundredths of a second.



Innsbruck, Austria
The Games were originally awarded to Denver but later nixed by Colorado voters. Innsbruck used existing facilities from the 1964 Games.
Speed skater Sheila Young (United States) captured gold, silver and bronze medals, making her the first U.S. athlete to win three medals at a single Winter Olympics.
Franz Klammer (Austria) won gold in downhill skiing.
Ice dancing made its Olympic debut. Ludmilla Pakhomava and Alexander Gorshkow (U.S.S.R.) took the first gold medal.

Lake Placid, United States


The second Lake Placid Games marked the first use of artificial snow in Olympic competition.
Eric Heiden (United States) won five gold medals in speed skating.
Alexander Saizev and Irina Rodnina (U.S.S.R.) won gold in pairs figure skating. It was her third consecutive gold medal.
The U.S. hockey “Dream Team” defeated the Soviets, who had taken gold since 1964.
Ulrich Wehing (East Germany) garnered his third consecutive gold medal in the Nordic combined.



Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
It was the first and only time the Olympics were held in a Socialist country.
Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean (Great Britain) scored the first perfect scores in ice dancing and won the gold.
Scott Hamilton (United States) took the gold medal in figure skating.
Phil Mahre and his brother, Steve, (United States) placed first and second in the slalom event.

IOC voted to have the Summer and Winter Olympics in different years starting in 1994. The Games would be held alternately every two years, with the Winter Games in the same years as soccer’s World Cup.

Calgary, Canada

For the first time since 1968, demonstration sports


(curling, short track speed skating and freestyle skiing) were included. Speed skating events were moved indoors.
Alberto Tomba (Italy) took two gold medals in the men’s slalom.
Matti Nykanen (Finland) won gold in all three ski jump events.
Bonnie Blair (United States) captured the first of three consecutive gold medals in the 500-meter speed skating event.

Albertville, France
Germany was once again represented by one team. The Russian republics, with the exception of Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, competed on a Unified Team.
Nordic skier Lyubov Yegorova (Unified Team) won three golds and two silvers, making her the most successful female athlete in Albertville.
World champion Kristi Yamaguchi (United States) garnered the gold medal in women’s figure skating.
Pairs figure skaters Artur Dmitriev and Natalya Mishkutenok (Unified Team) captured the gold.

Lillehammer, Norway
The South African team returned after 34 years. Each Russian republic had its own team.
Johann Koss (Norway) garnered three gold medals in speed skating and set a world record in each event.
Speed skater Bonnie Blair (United States) won two gold medals for a grand total of five, making her the most successful U.S. female winter athlete.
Drama lingered in the women’s figure skating competition as Nancy Kerrigan faced her U.S. teammate Tonya Harding, who was investigated for plotting to disable Kerrigan prior to the Games. Ukraine’s Oksana Baiul took home the gold medal and Kerrigan the silver.

Nagano, Japan
The Olympics returned to Japan after 26 years. Three sports — curling,


snowboarding and women’s hockey — made their medal debut. For the first time, the NHL suspended its season to allow the best professional players to participate in the Games.
The Japanese ski-jumping team won four medals, including a gold in the team event.
Hermann Maier (Austria) won the gold in both the giant and super giant slalom after recovering from a crash in the downhill.
Cross-country skier Bjorn Daehlie (Norway) won three golds and one silver, giving him an unprecedented 12 total and eight gold Winter Olympic medals for his career.

Salt Lake City, United States
Salt Lake City, which has sought to host the Winter Games since 1972, was selected over Quebec (Canada), Sion (Switzerland) and Ostersund (Sweden).
More than 2,500 athletes from 80 countries will flock to the capital of Utah for the 2002 Winter Olympics against a backdrop of deep concern about international terrorism. More than 5,000 law-enforcement officers from 60 local, state and federal agencies will be in Salt Lake City for the Games.


TCU Daily Skiff © 2002