Host City: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
Venue(s): Olympic Ski Stadium, Garmisch-Partenkirchen
Date Started: February 16, 1936
Date Finished: February 16, 1936
Format: Two jumps, with both scored on distance and form.
The interest for the ski jumping on the final day of the games was enormous. The official number of tickets sold was 106,000, while unofficial figures says that around 150,000 were gathered around Die Groβe Olympia-Schanze. On the honorary stand the leaders of the Third Reich, Führer Adolf Hitler, Generaloberst Hermann Göring and Reichsminister Dr. Joseph Goebbels could be seen together with other notables.
The usually strong Norwegian team consisted of defending champion Birger Ruud; the bronze medalist from 1932, Kåre Walberg; Reidar Andersen, three-time World Champion; and the 21-year-old, but not so merited Kongsberg-jumper, Arnholdt Kongsgård. The Swedes had great hopes for Sten Eriksson (Selånger), bronze medalist in three World Championships: 1931, 1933 and 1934. Eriksson had clearly beaten Ruud in a competition two weeks before the Olympics, and the Swedes felt they had good reasons for their optimism. Among the Middle European jumpers, a 22-year-old Polish jumper from Zakopane, Stanisław Marusarz, had shown promising things during the training jumps, and the Japanese jumpers impressed in the training sessions with long, brave and far more aerodynamic jumps than their European and North American colleagues. The landing was the big problem for the Japanese jumpers, many of their impressive jumps ending with a fall.
The huge crowd was to watch one of the closest competitions so far in the history of ski jumping. Eriksson had the longest jump in the first round (76.0 m.) and had a narrow lead over Ruud (75.0 m.), with Wahlberg in third position followed by the Finn Lauri Valonen (winner of the jumping event in the Nordic Combined earlier in the week), Andersen, Kongsgaard, Marusarz, Masaji Iguro from Japan and the US jumper, Norwegian born Sverre Fredheim, also had good jumps and were in contention for medals. Only eight points separated the leader, Eriksson, and 10th place.
Jumping first of the favorites in the second round was Walberg, with a 73.5 m. jump he took a clear lead. Then the 21-year old Japanese Tatsuta impressed the crowd with the longest jump of the day, 77.0 m., but as in his first jump, it ended with a fall. Nobody was able to match Walberg until start number 34 Ruud was ready. The defending champion was really a man for the big events. He produced the most stylish jump of the day, one meter longer than Walberg, and took the lead. Next was first-round leader Eriksson, who equaled his first jump of 76.0 m., but with a less style points he fell 1.5 points short of beating Ruud. Next of the favorites was Andersen, fifth after the first round. An excellent jump of 75.0 m. brought him ahead of Walberg and into the bronze medal spot. Last of the favorites was Marusarz, the Polish outsider. A good length, 75.5 m., brought him from 7th to 5th place in the final classification. Ruud had defended his gold, and Eriksson had taken the first ski jumping Olympic medal for Sweden.
The young German team did well, placing 10-12-17-18; in a team competition they would have been beaten only by the Norwegians. Tragically enough, only a few years later all of them would be dead, victims of World War II.
|11||Sverre Fredheim||28||United States||USA||214.1|
|13||Caspar Oimoen||29||United States||USA||207.6|
|23||Roy Mikkelsen||28||United States||USA||202.6|
|30||Walter Bietila||19||United States||USA||195.2|
|35||Karl Johan Baadsvik||25||Canada||CAN||187.1|
|37||Bruno Da Col||22||Italy||ITA||179.6|