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Cross Country Skiing at the 1972 Sapporo Winter Games:

Men's 15 kilometres

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Host City: Sapporo, Japan
Venue(s): Makomanai Cross Country Events Site, Sapporo
Date Started: February 7, 1972
Date Finished: February 7, 1972

Gold: SWE Sven-Åke Lundbäck
Silver: URS Fyodor Simashov
Bronze: NOR Ivar Formo

Summary

Sweden’s Lars-Göran Åslund was the reigning 1970 World Champion, winning the distance in a convincing way in Vysoke Tatra. He was on the Swedish team, but obviously not in his best shape, while another Swede, 24-year old Sven-Åke Lundbäck, dominated the 15 km race from start to finish. At 5 km he was in the lead, nine seconds ahead of East German Gert-Dietmar Klause, who eventually faded to 13th place. At 10 km, Lundbäck had increased his lead to half-a-minute, and he would finish in superb style, his winning margin being almost 32 seconds. The struggle for the other medals developed into a fierce fight between five men. Yury Skobov, a 22-year old Soviet skier, was in second place at 10 km, 2.5 seconds ahead of another youngster, the 20-year-old Norwegian Ivar Formo. Under a second behind Formo was a young Finn, Juha Mieto, also aged 22, while lying fifth, only fifth seconds behind Mieto, was another Soviet athlete, Fyodor Simashov. First to finish among those was Skobov, taking an early lead at the finish. Five minutes later Formo approached the finishing line, finishing strongly and beating Skobov’s time with 1.9 seconds. But Simashev had the strongest finish of all and bettered Formo’s time by 1.9 seconds. After Lundbäck had finished his gold medal race, only Mieto among the last starters could do something regarding the distribution of the medals. The big Finn, at 1.97 m tall, finished bravely, but arrived at the finishing line just 0.06 seconds behind Formo in the unlucky fourth position. Eight years later Mieto was involved in another hundreds-of a-second duel, this time for a gold medal.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T I1T I1R I2T I2R
1 Sven-Åke Lundbäck 24 Sweden SWE Gold 45:28.24 14:43.35 1 30:51.88 1
2 Fyodor Simashov 26 Soviet Union URS Silver 46:00.84 15:10.88 10 31:30.30 5
3 Ivar Formo 20 Norway NOR Bronze 46:02.68 15:07.72 8 31:24.34 3
4 Juha Mieto 22 Finland FIN 46:02.74 15:02.47 5 31:25.23 4
5 Yury Skobov 22 Soviet Union URS 46:04.59 15:05.83 7 31:21.87 2
6 Axel Lesser 25 East Germany GDR 46:17.01 15:03.84 6 31:38.93 8
7 Walter Demel 36 West Germany FRG 46:17.36 15:01.67 3 31:33.05 7
8 Gunnar Larsson 27 Sweden SWE 46:23.29 15:18.70 14 31:47.08 10
9 Oddvar Brå 20 Norway NOR 46:25.88 15:11.99 12 31:50.31 14
10 Osmo Karjalainen 32 Finland FIN 46:27.51 15:20.64 18 31:54.73 16
11 Edi Hauser 23 Switzerland SUI 46:30.53 15:19.73 16 31:48.78 13
12 Vladimir Voronkov 27 Soviet Union URS 46:33.43 15:11.06 11 31:44.50 9
13 Gert-Dietmar Klause 26 East Germany GDR 46:34.40 14:52.60 2 31:32.34 6
14 Albert Giger 25 Switzerland SUI 46:38.36 15:20.39 17 31:53.45 15
15 Johs Harviken 28 Norway NOR 46:46.36 15:19.54 15 31:58.12 18
16 Valery Tarakanov 30 Soviet Union URS 46:48.32 15:20.73 19 31:59.02 19
17 Alois Kälin 32 Switzerland SUI 46:50.31 15:10.01 9 31:47.75 11
18 Lars-Göran Åslund 26 Sweden SWE 46:56.23 15:12.99 13 31:55.12 17
19 Magne Myrmo 28 Norway NOR 47:02.55 15:02.41 4 31:48.10 12
20 Tord Backman 29 Sweden SWE 47:22.97 15:29.21 23 32:20.26 21
21 Stanislav Henych 22 Czechoslovakia TCH 47:25.81 15:28.33 22 32:13.38 20
22 Gerhard Gehring 26 West Germany FRG 47:33.78 15:27.52 21 32:28.22 22
23 Juhani Repo 24 Finland FIN 47:56.16 15:40.55 26 32:48.35 24
24 Carlo Favre 23 Italy ITA 47:59.07 15:27.24 20 32:45.51 23
25 Gerd Heßler 23 East Germany GDR 48:04.15 15:31.57 24 32:52.21 25
26 Rainer Groß 24 East Germany GDR 48:05.86 15:41.70 27 32:59.54 27
27 Tonio Biondini 27 Italy ITA 48:10.09 15:42.77 30 32:56.03 26
28 Franco Stella 33 Italy ITA 48:17.14 15:41.81 28 33:00.52 28
29 Ján Fajstavr 27 Czechoslovakia TCH 48:18.22 15:49.18 33 33:01.23 29
30 Ján Michalko 24 Czechoslovakia TCH 48:31.64 15:43.71 31 33:05.94 30
31 Roland Jeannerod 26 France FRA 48:32.42 15:52.69 34 33:19.27 33
32 Hartmut Döpp 24 West Germany FRG 48:46.08 15:33.10 25 33:07.49 31
33 Jan Staszel 21 Poland POL 48:46.72 15:47.72 32 33:17.14 32
34 Hansüli Kreuzer 21 Switzerland SUI 48:55.37 15:55.71 37 33:29.90 34
35 Manne Liimatainen 28 Finland FIN 48:59.90 15:56.95 38 33:41.78 36
36 Franz Betz 20 West Germany FRG 49:00.41 15:41.90 29 33:35.52 35
37 Hideo Tanifuji 22 Japan JPN 49:06.97 16:12.17 43 33:49.08 37
38 Heinrich Wallner 30 Austria AUT 49:17.97 15:55.51 36 33:56.84 40
39 Jean-Paul Vandel 20 France FRA 49:22.89 16:01.98 39 33:52.68 39
40 Franco Nones 31 Italy ITA 49:35.43 16:26.86 48 34:17.30 46
41 Kunio Shibata 23 Japan JPN 49:38.95 16:14.34 44 34:12.06 43
42 Herbert Wachter 31 Austria AUT 49:44.13 15:54.77 35 33:52.67 38
43 Akiyoshi Matsuoka 26 Japan JPN 49:50.72 16:05.54 41 34:02.65 41
44 Everett Dunklee 25 United States USA 49:52.20 16:30.57 50 34:13.92 44
45 Malcolm Hunter 21 Canada CAN 49:54.08 16:09.08 42 34:05.52 42
46 Daniel Cerisey 23 France FRA 50:05.88 16:02.37 40 34:22.62 49
47 Petar Pankov 26 Bulgaria BUL 50:06.74 16:31.37 51 34:17.57 47
48 Gérard Granclement 23 France FRA 50:07.11 16:23.24 47 34:21.64 48
49 Fred Kelly 19 Canada CAN 50:07.22 16:19.65 45 34:16.35 45
50 Roger Allen 19 Canada CAN 50:41.31 16:20.50 46 34:54.44 51
51 Motoharu Matsumura 25 Japan JPN 50:43.76 16:45.24 54 34:56.90 52
52 Jarl Omholt-Jensen 24 Canada CAN 50:52.14 16:48.88 55 35:05.62 53
53 Ventseslav Stoyanov 25 Bulgaria BUL 50:54.98 16:32.28 52 34:53.49 50
54 Tim Caldwell 17 United States USA 51:17.92 16:29.31 49 35:12.80 54
55 Ronny Yeager 19 United States USA 51:36.54 16:41.87 53 35:24.23 55
56 Danzangiin Narantungalag 27 Mongolia MGL 52:06.18 17:06.79 56 35:27.82 56
57 Namsrain Sandagdorj 23 Mongolia MGL 52:48.54 17:11.82 58 35:57.26 57
58 Larry Martin 21 United States USA 53:13.91 17:08.80 57 36:51.06 58
59 Terry Palliser 23 Great Britain GBR 54:11.98 17:36.84 60 37:22.82 59
60 Peter Strong 25 Great Britain GBR 54:41.99 17:43.82 61 37:45.89 60
61 Harry Tobin 27 Great Britain GBR 56:05.05 17:28.71 59 38:28.51 61
62 Liang Reng-Guey 21 Chinese Taipei TPE 1-03:35.66 20:27.66 62 43:43.04 62