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Athletics at the 1920 Antwerpen Summer Games:

Men's 110 metres Hurdles

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Host City: Antwerpen, Belgium
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Antwerpen
Date Started: August 17, 1920
Date Finished: August 18, 1920

Gold: CAN Tommy Thomson
Silver: USA Hal Barron
Bronze: USA Fred Murray

Summary

Tommy Thomson was a Canadian born in Birch Hills, near Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, but he had grown up in California, near Pasadena and Long Beach. He attended Dartmouth College and trained with the Americans, winning the 1920 AAU Championship, which had served as the U.S. Olympic Trials. Thomson also competed at the 1920 Canadian Trials, making the team in the high hurdles, the 400 hurdles, and the high jump. Thomson was a heavy favorite in this event and won easily, setting a world record in the finals. His time of 14.8 was a world record for the metric distance, but he had recently won the U.S. intercollegiate championships (IC4A) in 14.4 seconds over 120 yards, a far superior performance. At the victory ceremony, the Belgian officials found that they had no Canadian flag to display, so they raised the British flag instead.

Tommy Thomson’s victory marked a dramatic return from a near fatal accident in 1914. When 14 years old, he stepped off a buggy onto a loaded shotgun, which discharged into the left side of his chest. He underwent a four-hour emergency surgery, but survived. After the Olympics, Thomson retired from competition, but he later became well known as a coach, first at Dartmouth, and then at West Virginia and the U.S. Naval Academy.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Tommy Thomson 25 Canada CAN Gold WR
2 Hal Barron 25 United States USA Silver
3 Fred Murray 25 United States USA Bronze
4 Harry Wilson 23 New Zealand NZL
5 Walker Smith 23 United States USA
6 Carl-Axel Christiernsson 22 Sweden SWE
4 h1 r2/3 Henri Thorsen 26 Denmark DEN
4 h2 r2/3 George Gray Great Britain GBR
5 h1 r2/3 William Hunter 27 Great Britain GBR
5 h2 r2/3 William Yount 20 United States USA
6 h1 r2/3 Göran Hultin 22 Sweden SWE
6 h2 r2/3 Daciano Colbachini 26 Italy ITA
3 h1 r1/3 Georg Lindström 21 Sweden SWE
3 h2 r1/3 Gösta Holmér 28 Sweden SWE
3 h3 r1/3 Henri Bernard 19 France FRA
3 h5 r1/3 Harold Jeppe 21 South Africa RSA
3 h6 r1/3 Oscar, Ridder van Rappard 24 Netherlands NED
4 h1 r1/3 Wilfred Kent-Hughes 24 Australia AUS
4 h2 r1/3 Harry Marek Czechoslovakia TCH
4 h3 r1/3 René Joannes-Powell 24 Belgium BEL
4 h5 r1/3 Adolf Reich 18 Czechoslovakia TCH
4 h6 r1/3 Eric Dunbar 22 Great Britain GBR
5 h3 r1/3 James Andromedas Greece GRE
AC h4 r1/3 Willi Moser 26 Switzerland SUI