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Gillis Grafström

Full name: Gillis Emanuel Grafström
Gender: Male
Born: June 7, 1893 in Stockholm, Stockholm, Sweden
Died: April 14, 1938 in Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany
Affiliations: SASK, Stockholm (SWE)
Country: SWE Sweden
Sport: Figure Skating

Medals: 3 Gold, 1 Silver (4 Total)

Biography

When Gillis Grafström skated at his first Olympics in Antwerp one of his blades broke, which could not be replaced on site. He had to go to town to buy a pair of old-fashioned skates but won nevertheless. Four years later he defended his title in Chamonix only narrowly defeating his main rival Willy Böckl, helped by a big lead in the compulsory figures. In 1928 he won the gold medal for a third consecutive time, the only male figure skater to win three consecutive gold medals. At his last Winter Olympics in 1932, he collided on the ice with a photographer and was runner-up behind another Austrian, Karl Schäfer. He is the only skater to win medals at four Olympic Games. Grafström competed at his first World Championships in 1914, placing seventh, and won the first title after World War I in his home town of Stockholm. Due to occupational constraints, he only took part in two more World Championships, 1924 in Manchester and 1929 in London, taking the world title on both occasions. He never competed at the European Championships, but was also a three-time Swedish Champion. In 1917 he won the Nordic Games and in 1920 the Nordic Championships.

Grafström was one of the best skaters ever in compulsory figures. He invented the Grafström-spin and the flying sit spin and was the first skater to perform the Axel-Paulsen jump steadily. He was considered a particularly elegant skater with an enormous feeling for music. He later coached Sonja Henie.

Grafström studied architecture at the Berlin Technical University, graduating in 1918 and subsequently worked as an interior designer in London in the early 1920s. From 1925 until his death he lived and worked as an architect in the German town of Potsdam, doing his training on the Bornstedt Lake, when it was frozen over, or in nearby Berlin on the artificial skating rink in the Volkspark (urban park) Friedrichshain. In 1929 Grafström was awarded the Svenska-Dagbladet gold medal. He was a collector of graphics, paintings and sculptures related to skating and was also a writer, painter and graphic artist himself. In 1938 he married Cécile, née von Mendelssohn Bartholdy, the daughter of the banker Otto von Mendelssohn Bartholdy and great-granddaughter of the composer Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. Only two months later he died at the age of 44 from blood poisoning and was buried in the Bornstedt cemetery, but his widow continued his collection, and today it is part of the World Figure Skating Museum in Colorado Springs. In 1976 he was introduced into the Skating Hall of Fame. Potsdam named a street in Grafström’s honor.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Men's Singles Sweden SWE 1 Gold
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Men's Singles Sweden SWE 1 Gold
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Men's Singles Sweden SWE 1 Gold
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Men's Singles Sweden SWE 2 Silver

Men's Singles

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank MP TO TP O RP CFP FSP FSS
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings 1 7×1+ 7.0 2,838.50
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #1 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #2 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #3 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #4 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #5 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #6 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #7 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures 1 6×1+ 8.0 1,676.00
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #1 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #2 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #3 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #4 2 2.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #5 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #6 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #7 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating 1 6×1+ 8.0 1,162.50
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #1 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #2 2 2.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #3 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #4 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #5 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #6 1 1.0
1920 Summer 26 Antwerpen Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #7 1 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings 1 4×1+ 10.0 2,575.25 367.89
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #1 1 350.25 1.0 217.00 133.25
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #2 1 348.00 1.0 221.25 126.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #3 2 392.25 2.0 262.25 130.00
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #4 1 381.50 1.0 232.00 149.50
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #5 1 377.75 1.0 225.00 152.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #6 2 368.00 2.0 228.25 139.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #7 2 357.50 2.0 224.25 133.25
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures 1 5×1+ 9.0 1,610.00 230.00
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #1 1 217.00 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #2 1 221.25 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #3 1 262.25 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #4 1 232.00 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #5 1 225.00 1.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #6 2 228.25 2.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #7 2 224.25 2.0
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating 2 5×2+ 12.5 965.25 137.89
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #1 1 133.25 1.0 10.25
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #2 2T 126.75 2.5 9.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #3 3T 130.00 3.5 10.00
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #4 1 149.50 1.0 11.50
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #5 1 152.75 1.0 11.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #6 1T 139.75 1.5 10.75
1924 Winter 30 Chamonix Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #7 2 133.25 2.0 10.25
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings 1 4×1+ 12.0 2,698.25
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #1 1 407.75 1.0 243.25 164.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #2 3 372.25 3.0 221.75 150.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #3 3 367.50 3.0 217.00 150.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #4 2 376.25 2.0 229.25 147.00
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #5 1 397.50 1.0 243.50 154.00
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #6 1 362.75 1.0 219.25 143.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #7 1 414.25 1.0 256.75 157.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures 1 4×1+ 12.0 1,630.75
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #1 1 243.25 1.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #2 3 221.75 3.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #3 3 217.00 3.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #4 2 229.25 2.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #5 1 243.50 1.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #6 1 219.25 1.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #7 1 256.75 1.0
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating 1 6×2+ 12.5 1,067.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #1 1T 164.50 1.5 11.75
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #2 1T 150.50 2.0 10.75
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #3 2T 150.50 2.5 10.75
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #4 1T 147.00 1.5 10.50
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #5 1T 154.00 2.0 11.00
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #6 1 143.50 1.0 10.25
1928 Winter 34 Sankt Moritz Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #7 1T 157.50 2.0 11.25
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings 2 6×2+ 13.0 2,514.5
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #1 3 354.1 3.0 211.8 142.3
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #2 1 340.1 1.0 197.8 142.3
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #3 2 352.3 2.0 212.7 139.6
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #4 1 375.7 1.0 221.5 154.2
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #5 2 359.3 2.0 210.4 148.9
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #6 2 373.4 2.0 225.8 147.6
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Final Standings Judge #7 2 359.6 2.0 216.0 143.6
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures 2 4×2+ 18.0 1,496.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #1 3 211.8 3.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #2 2 197.8 2.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #3 2 212.7 2.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #4 2 221.5 2.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #5 3 210.4 3.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #6 2 225.8 2.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Compulsory Figures Judge #7 4 216.0 4.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating 2 5×2+ 12.5 1,018.5
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #1 3 142.3 3.0 10.5
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #2 1 142.3 1.0 10.5
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #3 2 139.6 2.0 10.3
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #4 1 154.2 1.0 11.4
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #5 1 148.9 1.0 11.0
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #6 2 147.6 2.5 10.9
1932 Winter 38 Lake Placid Figure Skating Sweden Free Skating Judge #7 2 143.6 2.0 10.6
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