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Athletics at the 1956 Melbourne Summer Games:

Men's 50 kilometres Walk

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Host City: Melbourne, Australia
Venue(s): Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne, Victoria
Date Started: November 24, 1956
Date Finished: November 24, 1956

Gold: NZL Norman Read
Silver: URS Yevgeny Maskinskov
Bronze: SWE John Ljunggren


[Norman Read] was a native of Britain, having been born in Portsmouth, but growing up in Steyning, Sussex. In 1954 he emigrated to New Zealand but wrote the British AAA, asking if he could represent them at the 1956 Olympics. He was rebuffed. He then requested the same of the New Zealand Olympic Committee, but they were also not interested, preferring the spot to go a native New Zealander. But in September, two months before the Games, he won the Australian championships in 4-30:16.4 over the Olympic course in Melbourne, and the New Zealand Olympic Committee was suddenly interested in him, adding Read to the team at the last moment. The early leader in the race was [Yevgeny Maskinskov] (URS). Read was second but well back at 30 km. He then put on a steady surge and caught Maskinskov at 42 km, and pulled away decisively.

View a Phase of this EventFinal Standings

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T
1 Norman Read 25 New Zealand NZL Gold 4-30:42.8
2 Yevgeny Maskinskov 25 Soviet Union URS Silver 4-32:57.0
3 John Ljunggren 37 Sweden SWE Bronze 4-35:02.0
4 Abdon Pamich 23 Italy ITA 4-39:00.0
5 Antal Róka 29 Hungary HUN 4-50:09.0
6 Ray Smith 27 Australia AUS 4-56:08.0
7 Adolf Weinacker 28 United States USA 5-00:16.0
8 Albert Johnson 25 Great Britain GBR 5-02:19.0
9 Eric Hall 24 Great Britain GBR 5-03:59.0
10 Ion Barbu 26 Romania ROU 5-08:33.6
11 Elliott Denman 22 United States USA 5-12:14.0
12 Leo Sjogren 42 United States USA 5-12:34.0
13 Ronald Crawford 20 Australia AUS 5-22:36.0
AC Don Thompson 23 Great Britain GBR DNF
AC Dumitru Paraschivescu 33 Romania ROU DNF
AC Grigory Klimov 23 Soviet Union URS DNF
AC János Somogyi 34 Hungary HUN DNF
AC Josef Doležal 35 Czechoslovakia TCH DNF
AC Milan Skřont 25 Czechoslovakia TCH DNF
AC Ted Allsopp 30 Australia AUS DQ
AC Mikhail Lavrov 29 Soviet Union URS DQ