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Ice Hockey at the 1956 Cortina d'Ampezzo Winter Games

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Sports:

Host City: Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy
Date Started: January 26, 1956
Date Finished: February 4, 1956
Events: 1

Participants: 169 (169 men and 0 women) from 10 countries
Youngest Participant: SUI Franz Berry (17 years, 66 days)
Oldest Participant: GER Alfred Hoffmann (41 years, 37 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 51 athletes with 1 medal
Most Medals (Country): 3 countries with 1 medal

Overview

Two rinks were used for the matches of the Olympic ice hockey tournament. Main stadium was the Stadio del Ghiaccio, which hosted nearly 7,000 spectators, while the smaller Stadio Apollonio (capacity: 1,000) was used for several matches. The most significant aspect of the 1956 ice hockey tournament was the appearance of the Soviet Union. They had first competed at the World Championships in 1954, winning that year and placing second to Canada in 1955, but they would win the gold medal in Cortina and soon come to dominate international ice hockey. The biggest controversy in 1956 surrounded the officials. Just prior to the start of the Olympics, 15 officials threatened to quit citing poor accommodations and failure of the IOC to pay their expenses in Italy. This problem was resolved but the competence of European officials was then raised by Bunny Ahearne, European President of the IIHF. He considered them to be poor skaters, so he proposed that they officiate from cages elevated above the ice, to give them a better vantage point. The idea went nowhere.

Medalists

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Men's Ice Hockey URS Soviet Union USA United States CAN Canada