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Speed Skating at the 1956 Cortina d'Ampezzo Winter Games:

Men's 1,500 metres

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Host City: Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy
Venue(s): Rink at Misurina, Misurina
Date Started: January 30, 1956
Date Finished: January 30, 1956

Gold: URS Yevgeny Grishin
URS Yury Mikhaylov
Bronze: FIN Toivo Salonen

Summary

Prior to the 1956 season, the world record was held by Yevgeny Grishin, who had won the 500 on Lake Misurina only two days before. But at a pre-Olympic meet, 10 days before this race, Yury Mikhaylov had broken Grishin’s mark, recording 2:09.1 in Davos. Other winners of recent major titles at the distance were in Cortina. Boris Shilkov had won the distance and the all-around at the 1954 World and European Championships. Norwegian Hroar Elvenes had won the distance at the 1955 Europeans. At the 1955 World Championships, Soviet skater [Oleg Goncharenko] won the 1,500 but he would only compete in longer distances, winning bronze medals in both the 5 and 10K in Cortina.

In the first pair was Finland’s Toivo Salonen, who was a top sprinter but better at 500 metres. He had won the 500 at the 1953 Europeans and Worlds and the 1955 World Championships. Salonen posted 2:09.4, the second fastest time ever, which was a formidable mark for the other skaters to look at, and he had placed second in Davos behind Mikhaylov’s world record race. In fact nobody approached it until his teammate, Juhani Järvinen finished the ninth pair in 2:09.7. Grishin was in the 11th pair. He started slightly slower than Salonen (26.5 to 26.6) but caught him by 700 metres and powered ahead to finish in a world record 2:08.6. Mikhaylov was in the next pair. He led Grishin’s pace at 700 and 1,100 metres, but could not finish as strongly, and also crossed the line in 2:08.6. The two would share the gold medal, with Salonen holding on for the bronze and Järvinen in fourth place. Elvenes had the misfortune to be drawn in the final (27th) pair, and finished only 24th.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T 3c 7c 1.1k
1T Yevgeny Grishin 24 Soviet Union URS Gold 2:08.6 26.6 59.0 1:32.5 WR
1T Yury Mikhaylov 25 Soviet Union URS Gold 2:08.6 26.7 58.6 1:32.0 WR
3 Toivo Salonen 22 Finland FIN Bronze 2:09.4 26.5 59.2 1:33.6
4 Juhani Järvinen 20 Finland FIN 2:09.7 26.9 59.6 1:33.5
5 Robert Merkulov 24 Soviet Union URS 2:10.3 27.1 59.9 1:34.2
6 Sigvard Ericsson 25 Sweden SWE 2:11.0 27.7 1:00.7 1:35.0
7 Colin Hickey 24 Australia AUS 2:11.8 27.8 1:00.7 1:35.2
8 Boris Shilkov 28 Soviet Union URS 2:11.9 28.2 1:01.6 1:36.4
9 Knut Johannesen 22 Norway NOR 2:12.2 27.9 1:01.2 1:36.1
10 Roald Aas 27 Norway NOR 2:12.9 28.1 1:01.5 1:36.4
11T Bertil Eng 26 Sweden SWE 2:13.1 27.2 1:00.3 1:35.6
11T Wim de Graaff 24 Netherlands NED 2:13.1 28.2 1:01.3 1:36.0
11T Gerard Maarse 26 Netherlands NED 2:13.1 28.4 1:02.4 1:37.4
14 Kees Broekman 28 Netherlands NED 2:13.1 28.8 1:02.4 1:37.3
15 Bohumil Jauris 22 Czechoslovakia TCH 2:13.6 28.5 1:02.0 1:37.0
16 Jan Kristiansen 21 Norway NOR 2:13.7 28.2 1:01.6 1:36.9
17 Bengt Malmsten 33 Sweden SWE 2:14.6 27.1 1:00.4 1:36.6
18 Matti Hamberg 23 Finland FIN 2:14.8 28.1 1:02.0 1:37.8
19 Johnny Cronshey 29 Great Britain GBR 2:15.0 29.0 1:03.3 1:38.6
20 Pat McNamara 30 United States USA 2:15.2 29.0 1:03.7 1:39.2
21 Taketsugu Asazaka 25 Japan JPN 2:15.4 28.6 1:02.8 1:38.7
22 Gunnar Ström 25 Sweden SWE 2:15.6 27.6 1:01.6 1:38.0
23 Yoshitaki Hori 22 Japan JPN 2:15.9 28.0 1:02.3 1:37.5
24 Hroar Elvenes 23 Norway NOR 2:16.0 28.1 1:02.6 1:38.7
25 Johnny Werket 31 United States USA 2:16.1 28.6 1:03.4 1:38.9
26 Leo Tynkkynen 21 Finland FIN 2:16.2 27.8 1:02.5 1:38.8
27T Guido Citterio 24 Italy ITA 2:16.5 27.7 1:02.5 1:38.9
27T Vladimír Kolář 28 Czechoslovakia TCH 2:16.5 28.3 1:02.9 1:39.0
29 Jang Yeong 21 South Korea KOR 2:16.7 28.4 1:02.6 1:38.5
30 Gene Sandvig 24 United States USA 2:17.1 29.1 1:04.1 1:40.6
31 Franz Offenberger 24 Austria AUT 2:17.3 28.6 1:03.6 1:40.3
32 Arthur Mannsbarth 25 Austria AUT 2:17.4 29.4 1:05.0 1:41.0
33 John Hearn 26 Great Britain GBR 2:17.5 28.8 1:04.8 1:40.9
34 Raymond Gilloz 24 France FRA 2:17.7 28.2 1:03.2 1:40.1
35 Hans Keller 24 Germany GER 2:18.1 29.7 1:04.7 1:41.1
36 Shinkichi Takemura 24 Japan JPN 2:18.3 28.3 1:02.6 1:39.3
37 Don McDermott 26 United States USA 2:18.6 28.7 1:04.3 1:41.2
38 Kurt Eminger 20 Austria AUT 2:19.0 28.9 1:04.3 1:41.3
39T Jaroslav Doubek 24 Czechoslovakia TCH 2:19.2 27.9 1:02.8 1:40.5
39T Yoshiyasu Gomi 22 Japan JPN 2:19.2 28.5 1:03.3 1:40.7
41 Ralf Olin 30 Canada CAN 2:19.7 28.8 1:03.1 1:40.2
42T Guido Caroli 28 Italy ITA 2:20.0 28.6 1:03.4 1:40.5
42T Jo Yun-Sik 24 South Korea KOR 2:20.0 28.1 1:02.2 1:39.4
44 Kim Jong-Sun 25 South Korea KOR 2:20.5 29.2 1:04.5 1:41.8
45 Johnny Sands 22 Canada CAN 2:20.7 29.6 1:05.0 1:41.9
46T Jürg Rohrbach 24 Switzerland SUI 2:21.7 29.3 1:05.0 1:42.4
46T Erich Kull 24 Switzerland SUI 2:21.7 29.3 1:04.8 1:42.7
48 Remo Tomasi 23 Italy ITA 2:22.2 29.2 1:04.9 1:42.8
49 Nico Olsthoorn 27 Netherlands NED 2:22.6 29.2 1:04.8 1:42.0
50 Alex Connell 25 Great Britain GBR 2:23.0 30.3 1:06.3 1:44.4
51T Ernst Biel 21 Austria AUT 2:23.5 29.9 1:05.8 1:43.5
51T Pyeon Chang-Nam 34 South Korea KOR 2:23.5 29.9 1:05.3 1:43.5
53 Gordon Audley 27 Canada CAN 2:26.1 29.0 1:04.1 1:44.0
AC Pierre Huylebroeck 33 Belgium BEL DNF