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Max Houben

Full name: Max Houben
Gender: Male
Born: May 5, 1898 in Verviers, Liège, Belgium
Died: February 10, 1949 in Lake Placid, New York, United States
Affiliations: RCA Spa, Spa (BEL)
Country: BEL Belgium
Sport: Bobsleigh, Athletics

Medals: 1 Silver (1 Total)

Biography

Max Houben was a versatile athlete. In 1920, he won the Belgian title in the 100 m dash, and competed in track & field at the Olympics later that year. Houben also played football in the top Belgian league, playing for [RCS Verviétois] and later [Union St. Gilloise], winning the title in 1933. Also competing in tennis and auto racing, Houben was probably most successful as a bobsleigh pilot. Thanks to his friend Baron de Lunden, who provide him with a sled, Houben participated as a slider in four Olympics, becoming the first Belgian to compete in both Winter and Summer Olympics. While a decent-performer in the pre-war years, Houben reached his top after World War II, when he was already in his late 40ies. At the 1947 World Championships, he medalled in both events, taking a bronze in the 2-man and a silver in the 4-man bob. At the 1948 Olympics, Houben took a silver medal in the 4-man event. At 49, Houben is still one of the oldest medallists ever at the Winter Olympics. One year later, Houben was among the favourites for the world title in Lake Placid. During a practice run, Houben and brakesman Mouvet slid off the track and smashed into an upright. Mouvet broke his skull and sustained a serious back injury, but survived. Max Houben was killed instantly. His memorial service was attended by all bobsledders present at the World Championships.

Personal Bests: 100 – 10.8 (1920); 200 – unknown.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1920 Summer 21 Antwerpen Athletics Men's 200 metres Belgium BEL 5 h3 r2/4
1920 Summer 21 Antwerpen Athletics Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay Belgium BEL 4 h2 r1/2
1928 Winter 29 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Men's Four/Five Belgium-1 BEL 6
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Men's Two Belgium-1 BEL 9
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Men's Two Belgium-2 BEL 9
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Men's Four Belgium-2 BEL 5
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Men's Two Belgium-1 BEL 4
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Men's Four Belgium BEL 2 Silver

Men's Two

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Partner Phase Unit
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Louis Van Hege Final Standings
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Louis Van Hege Run 1
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Louis Van Hege Run 2
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Louis Van Hege Run 3
1932 Winter 33 Lake Placid Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Louis Van Hege Run 4
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Martial Van Schelle Final Standings
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Martial Van Schelle Run 1
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Martial Van Schelle Run 2
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Martial Van Schelle Run 3
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Martial Van Schelle Run 4
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Jacques Mouvet Final Standings
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Jacques Mouvet Run 1
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Jacques Mouvet Run 2
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Jacques Mouvet Run 3
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Jacques Mouvet Run 4

Men's Four

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Final Standings
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Run 1
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Run 2
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Run 3
1936 Winter 37 Garmisch-Partenkirchen Bobsleigh Belgium-2 BEL Run 4
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium BEL Final Standings
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium BEL Run 1
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium BEL Run 2
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium BEL Run 3
1948 Winter 49 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium BEL Run 4

Men's Four/Five

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit
1928 Winter 29 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Final Standings
1928 Winter 29 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Run 1
1928 Winter 29 Sankt Moritz Bobsleigh Belgium-1 BEL Run 2

Men's 200 metres

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T MB
1920 Summer 21 Antwerpen Athletics Belgium Quarter-Finals Heat Three 5
1920 Summer 21 Antwerpen Athletics Belgium Round One Heat Seven 2 QU 24.2est 2 m. bh1

Men's 4 × 100 metres Relay

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Rank T MB
1920 Summer 21 Antwerpen Athletics Belgium BEL Round One Heat Two 4 43.7est 2 m. bh3