Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Second Winter Olympics: St. Moritz
On Feb. 19, 1928, the second Winter Olympic games close at St Moritz, Switzerland.
The 1928 Games were the first true Winter Olympics held on its own as they were not in conjunction with a Summer Olympics. The preceding 1924 Games were retroactively renamed the inaugural Winter Olympics, though they had been in fact part of the 1924 Summer Olympics. All preceding Winter Events of the Olympic Games were the winter sports part of the schedule of the Summer Games, and not held as a separate Winter Games. These games also replaced the now redundant Nordic Games, that were held quadrennially since early in the century.
Athletes from 25 nations competed at these Games, up from 16 in 1924. Nations making their first appearance at the Winter Olympic Games were Argentina (first participation of a delegation coming from a country belonging to the Southern Hemisphere), Estonia, Germany, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, and Romania.
The Demonstration sports included Military patrol and Skijoring.
Fluctuating weather conditions made these Olympics memorable. The opening ceremony was held in a blizzard. In contrast, warm weather conditions plagued the Olympics for the remainder of the Games, requiring cancellations of one event with temperatures as high as 25 °C (77 °F).
Highlights from the games included Sonja Henie winning her first gold medal in women's figure skating.
Ivar Ballangrud won the Olympic title in the 5,000m speed skating and Clas Thunberg won the 500m and the 1,500m.
Norway collected the most medals at the games with 15 total, earning six Gold medals, four Silver medals and five Bronze medals.
The United States earned the second most medals with six, collecting two Gold, two Silver and two Bronze medals.
Sweden earned the third most medals with five, two Gold, two Silver and one Bronze medal.
The single bronze medal won by Switzerland is the lowest output by a host nation at an Olympics.