The History of Winter Olympic Games

By Yuliya
  • Chamonix, France

    Chamonix, France
    I -CHAMONIX 1924 The 500m speed skating gave America's Charles Jewtraw the distinction of winning the first Winter Games gold but it was Finland's speed skater Clas Thunberg (three gold, one silver, one bronze) and Norway's cross-country skier Thorleif Haug (three gold) who dominated the inaugural tournament.
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    History of Winter Olympic Games

  • St. Moritz, Switzerland

    St. Moritz, Switzerland
    II -ST MORITZ 1928 Mild weather caused some events to be cancelled but that didn't stop Thunberg adding two more golds to his 1924 medals haul. Europe dominated the top positions on the medal table again and Norway's Sonja Henie caused a sensation by winning figure skating gold at 15, a Winter Olympics record which stood until 2002.
  • Lake Placid, United States

    Lake Placid, United States
    III -LAKE PLACID 1932 The Depression meant that only 17 countries sent athletes to Lake Placid but the USA responded to home advantage by topping the medal table with six golds. Eddie Eagan, the light-heavyweight boxing gold medallist in 1920 became the only athlete to win summer and winter gold as part of the USA four-man bob team.
  • Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

    Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
    IV -GARMISCH 1936 In the presence of Nazi troops, half a million people watched a hugely successful Games, with European nations occupying the top seven places on the medal table. Alpine skiing was included for the first time but skiing instructors (considered professional) were banned, leading to a boycott by Swiss and Austrian skiers.
  • St. Moritz, Switzerland

    St. Moritz, Switzerland
    V -ST MORITZ 1948 Following the World War, Germany and Japan were not invited, a tournament which saw Britain send its largest team to date (60 athletes) but win just two bronze medals as reward. An evenlycontested Games resulted in only Henri Oreiller (France) and Martin Sundstrand (Norway) winning more than one gold.
  • Oslo, Norway

    Oslo, Norway
    VI -OSLO 1952 The birthplace of modern skiing finally got to host a Games which took Germany and Japan back in to the fold. Flags flew at half mast at the opening ceremony after the death of King George VI. Norway led the medals table with speed skater Hjalmar Andersen the star, scooping three golds while Jeanette Altwegg triumphed in figure skating for GB.
  • Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy

    Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy
    VII -CORTINA 1956 Bad omens abounded as the Italian army had to bring in artificial snow to compensate for the lack of the real stuff and then final torchbearer Giulio Caroli tripped over a TV cable in the stadium. Russia were the leading medal winners but Austria's Toni Sailer, the Kitzbuhel Cannonball, won all three alpine events by huge margins.
  • Squaw Valley, United States of America

    Squaw Valley, United States of America
    VIII -SQUAW VALLEY 1960 Biathlon made its debut in California but bobsled was omitted for the only time when organisers refused to build a track as only nine countries entered the event. Walt Disney was named chairman on the pageantry committee for the opening and closing ceremonies and in a true Hollywood line, the USA upset Canada and Russia to win the ice hockey.
  • Innsbruck, Austria

    Innsbruck, Austria
    IX -INNSBRUCK 1964 The Austrian army saved the day by bringing in thousands of blocks of ice. Russia's Lydia Skoblikova became the first athlete to win four golds when she won in speed skating. French sisters Christine and Marielle Goitschel finished first and second in two skiing events while Tony Nash and Robin Dixon won GB's only ever bobsled gold.
  • Grenoble, France

    Grenoble, France
    X -GRENOBLE 1968 Broadcast in colour for the first time, the tenth Games saw a triumph for the hosts as Jean-Claude Killy raced to a skiing golden treble in downhill, slalom and giant slalom despite Austrian rival Karl Schranz claiming he had been cheated. East German women finished first, second and fourth in luge but all were kicked out for heating their runners.
  • Sapporo, Japan

    Sapporo, Japan
    XI - SAPPORO 1972 Japan had never won winter gold but in the first tournament staged outside of Europe and America, the hosts swept the podium in the 70m ski jump with Yokio Kasaya taking gold. Austrian ski star Karl Schranz was kicked out of his second consecutive Games - this time after a dispute over professionalism.
  • Innsbruck, Austria

    Innsbruck, Austria
    XII - INNSBRUCK 1976 The first of three consecutive Games where Britain won a gold medal was switched to Austria after the residents of the original host city, Denver, refused to finance it. John Curry's magnificent figure skating won Britain's gold but the local hero was Austria's favourite son Franz Klammer who skied on the edge to win downhill gold.
  • Lake Placid, United States

    Lake Placid, United States
    XIII - LAKE PLACID 1980 China took part for the first time but it was the USSR who continued to dominate with 10 gold medals. They would have expected an 11th but for the biggest upset in the Games history when the USA's collection of hockey amateurs produced the Miracle on Ice to beat the mighty Red Machine 4-3 on their way to a gold medal.
  • Sarajevo, Yugoslavia

    Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
    XIV - SARAJEVO 1984 Germany led the medal table but it was the British pairing of Torvill and Dean who stole the show in Sarajevo with their memorable "sixes across the board" performance in ice dance. Despite the weather disrupting the skiing progamme, Jure Franco won a silver in the giant slalom, the hosts' first medal in a winter games.
  • Calgary, Canada

    Calgary,  Canada
    XV - CALGARY 1988 Katarina Witt defended her figure skating crown and Italy's charismatic Alberto Tomba became a global star with gold in the slalom and giant slalom. The ski jumping gained notoriety through Britain's Eddie "The Eagle" Edwards but the star of the event was the Flying Finn Matti Nykunen who won all three ski jump golds.
  • Albertville, France

    Albertville, France
    XVI - ALBERTVILLE 1992 Albert for a venue and Albert for a hero as Tombamania gripped the third French Games. The Italian skier - nicknamed La Bomba - became the first Alpine skier to win the same gold medal twice as he raced to victory in the giant slalom. With Germany now unified, they moved back to the top of the medals table, edging out the former Soviet states.
  • Lillehammer, Norway

    Lillehammer, Norway
    XVII - LILLEHAMMER 1994 It was only two years since the last competition but the IOC had decided to move the cycle to alternate with the Summer Games rather than clash in the same year. On the ice, events were overshadowed by Tonya Harding's implication in a conspiracy to injure rival Nancy Kerrigan. Harding finished eighth while Kerrigan took silver.
  • Nagano, Japan

    Nagano, Japan
    XVIII - NAGANO 1998 Snowboarding made its debut and curling returned for the first time since the inaugural Games. Japanese ski jumper Kazuyoshi Funaki won gold on the large hill and did so with an unprecedented maximum style marks. American Tara Lipinski becamethe youngest individual champion when she skated to gold at 15 years and 255 days.
  • Salt Lake City, United States

    Salt Lake City, United States
    XIX - SALT LAKE CITY 2002 Norway led the way with 13 gold medals, four of which went to Ole Einar Bjoerndalen in the biathlon. Croatia's Janica Kostelic took gold in slalom, giant slalom and the combined, as well as silver in the super-G. Britain had a rare gold to celebrate as Rhona Martin and her team swept to victory and a gold medal in curling.
  • Turin, Italy

    Turin, Italy
    XX - TURIN 2006 After watching fellow Brit Alex Coomber take bronze four years earlier in the skeleton, Shelley Rudman aimed to follow suit and thanks to £4,000 from local residents she got to Turin and came home with silver. South Korea won 10 medals in the short track speed skating with three golds in women's for Sun-Yu Jin and another three in men for Hyun-Soo Ahn.
  • Vancouver, Canada

    Vancouver, Canada
    XXI - VANCOUVER, CANADA In the men's individual event in biathlon, two silver medals were awarded for a second-place tie. No bronze medal was awarded for that event. Athletes from Slovakia (Anastasiya Kuzmina – biathlon, women's sprint) and Belarus (Aleksei Grishin – freestyle skiing, men's aerials) won the first Winter Olympic gold medals for their nations. Norwegian cross-country skier Marit Bjørgen was the most successful athlete, winning three gold, one silver and one bronze medal