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Olympic Games

XII (12th) WINTER GAMES
INNSBRUCK, AUSTRIA | February 4th - 15th, 1976


Innsbruck, AUT



Innsbruck 1976

Innsbruck, Austria 1976
XIIth WINTER GAMES

February 4 - 15, 1976

Mascot - Tyrolean Snowman

37 countries, 1123 athletes (231 women)

6 sports, 37 events

Opening - President Dr. Rudolf Kirchschlager

Torch lit by - Christl Haas & Josef Feistmantl

Candidates: Denver, Sion (SUI), Tampere/Are (FIN), Vancouver
Originally, Denver was chosen but withdrew

Two Olympic flames burned brightly at Innsbruck; one each was lit for the Austrian city's host roles in 1964 and 1976. Sixty thousand spectators were present at the opening ceremony of the XII Winter Games and 200 million people watched it live on television. Denver originally was the odds-on favorite to be host to the 1976 Games, but concerns about the financial cost of the Games, the possible environmental effect and concerns over a negative effect on the state's winter tourism prompted the local population to reject hosting the Games through a referendum.

Originally the 1976 Games were to be held in Denver. However, soon after Denver was selected, citizen groups campaigned to cancel the Games due to environmental and economic concerns. In 1972, a referendum was held in Colorado calling for an amendment to state laws which would prohibit certain expenditures made with state taxes. The referendum passed, technically making the Denver Games illegal. Having no other choice, the Denver Olympic Organizing Committee withdrew as host city. In an emergency meeting of the executive board, the IOC chose Innsbruck as the host for the 1976 Games.

Hometown heroes were plentiful once again in Innsbruck. Franz Klammer won the men's downhill, and Karl Schnabl won the 90-meter ski jumping event. Rosi Mittermaier, a West German from right across the Austrian border, came within 13/100ths of a second of sweeping the women's alpine events. Having already won the downhill and the slalom, she finished agonizingly close to Canada's Kathy Kreiner in the giant slalom, but had to settle for a silver medal.

Figure skating was once again dominated by the Soviets, who captured gold in pairs as well as the newly-introduced ice dancing event. The men's gold was won surprisingly by British skater John Curry. Dorothy Hamill followed in the steps of Carol Heiss and Peggy Fleming to become the latest American "Queen of the Winter Games," as crowds fell in love with her on her way to a gold medal.

Speed skating saw Tatiana Averina of the Soviet Union take four medals, while the U.S. team earned six of its 10 total medals in speed skating events.

In no surprise at all, the Soviets again won the hockey competition. But in a total surprise, American Bill Koch won America's first and only cross-country skiing medal in the 30km by finishing second.

The Soviet Union was the top medals winner with 27.

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6 sports, 37 events

U
R
S

G
D
R

U
S
A

N
O
R

F
R
G

F
I
N

A
U
T

S
U
I

N
E
D

I
T
A

C
A
N

G
B
R

 

BIATHLON

2

                     

2

BOBSLED

 

2

                   

2

ICE HOCKEY

1

                     

1

LUGE

 

3

                   

3

SKATING

                         

Figure Skating

2

 

1

               

1

4

Sped Skating

4

 

2

2

       

1

     

9

SKIING

                         

Alpine Skiing

       

2

 

1

1

 

1

1

 

6

Cross-Country Skiing

4

1

 

1

 

2

           

7

Nordic Combined

 

1

                   

1

Ski Jumping

 

1

       

1

         

2

TOTAL

13

7

3

3

2

2

2

1

1

1

1

1

37

GOLD MEDAL WINNERS

(2 events added, 1 event changed - 4x5 instead of 3x5)
(23 Men, 12 Women, 2 Combined Events)

BIATHLON
M\20km: Nikolay Kruglov, USSR
M\4x7.5km Relay: Soviet Union

BOBSLEIGH
M\Two-Man: Meinhard Nehmer/Bernhard Germeshausen, East Germany
M\Four-Man: East Germany

ICE HOCKEY
Men's Team: Soviet Union

LUGE

M\Single: Detlef GÜNTHER, East Germany
M\Double: Hans Rinn/Norbert Hahn, GDR
W\Single: Margit Schumann, East Germany

SKIING

ALPINE SKIING

M\Downhill: Franz Klammer, Austria
M\Slalom: Piero Gros, Italy
M\Giant Slalom: Heini Hemmi, Switzerland
W\Downhill: Rosi Mittermaier, West Germany
W\Slalom: Rosi Mittermaier, West Germany
W\Giant Slalom: Kathy Kreiner, Canada

CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING
M\15km Classical: Nikolay Bazhukov, USSR
M\30km Classical: Sergey Savelyev, USSR
M\50km Classical: Ivar Formo, Norway
M\4x10km Relay: Finland
W\5km Classical: Helena Takalo, Finland
W\10km Classical: Raisa Smetanina, USSR
W\4x5km Relay: Soviet Union

NORDIC COMBINED
M\Individual: Ulrich Wehling, East Germany

SKI JUMPING
M\K-90 Individual: Hans-Georg Aschenbach, GDR
M\K-120 Individual: Karl Schnabl, Austria

SKATING

FIGURE SKATING
M\Singles: John Curry, Great Britain
W\Singles: Dorothy Hamill, United States
Pairs: Irina Rodnina/Aleksandr Zaitsev, USSR
Ice-Dancing: Lyudmila Pakhomova/Aleksandr Gorschkov, USSR

SPEED SKATING
M\500m: Yevgeny Kulikov, USSR
M\1000m: Peter Mueller, United States
M\1500m: Jan Egil Storholt, Norway
M\5000m: Sten Stensen, Norway
M\10000m: Piet Kleine, Netherlands
W\500m: Sheila Young, United States
W\1000m: Tatyana Averina, USSR
W\1500m: Galina Stepanskaya, USSR
W\3000m: Tatyana Averina, USSR

 

Country

G

S

B

TTL

USSR 

13

6

8

27

East Germany

7

5

7

19

United States

3

3

4

10

Norway

3

3

1

7

West Germany

2

5

3

10

Finland

2

4

1

7

Austria

2

2

2

6

Switzerland

1

3

1

5

Netherlands

1

2

3

6

Italy

1

2

1

4

Canada

1

1

1

3

Great Britain

1

0

0

1

Czechoslovakia

0

1

0

1

Liechtenstein

0

0

2

2

Sweden

0

0

2

2

France

0

0

1

1

TOTAL

37

37

37

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