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Athletics at the 1932 Los Angeles Summer Games:

Men's 100 metres

Athletics at the 1932 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games


Host City: Los Angeles, United States
Venue(s): Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, California
Date Started: July 31, 1932
Date Finished: August 1, 1932

Gold: USA Eddie Tolan
Silver: USA Ralph Metcalfe
Bronze: GER Arthur Jonath


Early in 1932, the top sprinter was [Ralph Metcalfe] of the US. He won the sprint double at the NCAA Championship, and then won the US Olympic Trials, defeating [Eddie Tolan], who had been the top sprinter in the US in 1929-31. The final was an intercontinental one, with three Americans, [George Simpson] joining Metcalfe and Tolan, [Arthur Jonath] of Germany, [Danie Joubert] of South Africa, and the first Asian to make an Olympic final, [Takayoshi Yoshioka] of Japan. Yoshioka was a very fast starter and he opened in the lead. But he was quickly caught by Tolan at 30 metres, who led until he was caught by Metcalfe at about 80 metres. At the tape there was little to choose between them, and even the electric timer gave them both the same time of 10.38, but Tolan was chosen as the gold medalist, with Metcalfe second, and Jonath getting the bronze.

Despite the electric timing, mistakes could still happen in this era. In the first semi-final, Tolan was declared the victor over Joubert, with both timed in 10.81, and Yoshioka third in 10.83. But film of the race, available on youtube ( as of September 2013), clearly shows that Yoshioka won, with Joubert second, and Tolan third. It did not matter in the final outcome, however, as all three qualified for the final.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalSemi-FinalsQuarter-FinalsRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Eddie Tolan 23 United States USA Gold
2 Ralph Metcalfe 22 United States USA Silver
3 Arthur Jonath 22 Germany GER Bronze
4 George Simpson 23 United States USA
5 Danie Joubert 23 South Africa RSA
6 Takayoshi Yoshioka 23 Japan JPN
4 h1 r3/4 Percy Williams 24 Canada CAN
4 h2 r3/4 Carlos Bianchi 21 Argentina ARG
5 h1 r3/4 Allan Elliot 26 New Zealand NZL
5 h2 r3/4 Bert Pearson Canada CAN
6 h1 r3/4 Helmut Körnig 26 Germany GER
6 h2 r3/4 Harold Wright 23 Canada CAN
4 h1 r2/4 Chris Berger 21 Netherlands NED
4 h2 r2/4 Andrej Engel 22 Czechoslovakia TCH
4 h3 r2/4 Ernie Page 21 Great Britain GBR
4 h4 r2/4 José de Almeida 27 Brazil BRA
5 h1 r2/4 Fernando Ortíz Mexico MEX
5 h3 r2/4 Ernst Geerling 23 Germany GER
5 h4 r2/4 Izuo Anno 22 Japan JPN
3 h4 r1/4 Héctor Berra 22 Argentina ARG
3 h5 r1/4 Angelos Lambrou 20 Greece GRE
4 h1 r1/4 André Théard 27 Haiti HAI
4 h2 r1/4 Bunoo Sutton 23 India IND
4 h3 r1/4 Ronald Vernieux 21 India IND
4 h4 r1/4 Jesús Moraila Mexico MEX
4 h5 r1/4 Fernando Ramírez Mexico MEX
4 h6 r1/4 Ricardo Guimarães 23 Brazil BRA
4 h7 r1/4 Stanley Fuller 24 Great Britain GBR
5 h1 r1/4 António Rodrigues 26 Portugal POR
5 h2 r1/4 Liu Changchun 22 China CHN
5 h3 r1/4 Samuel Giacosa Argentina ARG
5 h7 r1/4 Mario Marques Brazil BRA
AC h1 r1/4 Fred Reid 23 Great Britain GBR