Host City: Sankt Moritz, Switzerland
Venue(s): Olympic Ice Stadium Badrutts Park, St. Moritz
Date Started: February 7, 1948
Date Finished: February 7, 1948
Format: Each judge ranked each pair by Ordinal Placement from first through last place. The Ordinal Placement for each judge was based on Total Points awarded by that judge to the pairs, with the tiebreaker being Sporting Merit (2nd mark). Final placement was determined by a Majority Placement rule. Thus, if a pair were ranked first by a majority of the judges, that pair was placed first overall, and the process was repeated for each place. If no absolute majority for a place existed, the tiebreakers were, in order: 1) Total Ordinals, 2) Total Points, 3) Compulsory Figure Points.
In the first Figure Skating Championships after World War II, the European Championships in Davos 1947, the pair skating event was won by a relatively unknown Belgian couple, Micheline Lannoy and Pierre Baugniet, national champions since 1944. At the World Championship in Stockholm two weeks later they were again on top of the rostrum, winning with a scant margin over the young and very promising US pair, siblings Karol (15) and Peter Kennedy (19) from Seattle, WA.
In the first part of the Olympic season of 1948, “The Kennedy Kids” won their first national championships. The Belgian couple chose not to take part in the European Championship in Prague two weeks before the St. Moritz Games, and the Hungarians Andrea Kékesy/Ede Kiraly won the title in a very convincing way.
The Olympic pairs competition became a close contest, but the Belgian couple were able to keep ahead of their rivals and secured Belgium’s first and until 2006 only Winter Olympic Gold. The newly crowned European Champions, Hungarians Kékesy/Kiraly, won the silver medal ahead of Canadian couple Suzi Morrow/Wallace Diestelmeyer. Karol Kennedy was hampered by a serious back injury, and the Kennedys ended in a disappointing 6th place.
Five sibling couples participated in St. Moritz, and they placed in a row from 5th to 9th. In 14th place we find another family couple, wife and husband Denise and Jacques Favart from Paris. 20 years later Jacques Favart had advanced to become President of the International Skating Union.
Lannoy/Baugniet ended their career by winning the World title in Davos one week after the Olympics, and the medal distribution was the same as in St. Mortiz. Karol Kennedy was still struggling with her back injury, and the Kennedys ended in 4th place.