About the Games
1091 athletes from 36 teams participated in Innsbruck1964 Winter Olympics and competed in 34 events.
Most medals won (from a total of 14 teams) by: 1. USSR – 25 (11, 8, 6), 2. Austria – 12 (4, 5, 3), 3. Norway – 15 (3, 6, 6).
For the first time in history of the Winter Games, the Olympic flame was lit in ancient Olympia.
The organizers of Innsbruck Winter Olympics had to cope with critical lack of snow. The Austrian army rushed to help the Games host – soldiers carved 20,000 blocks of ice from the Alps and transported them down to the luge and bobsleigh tracks. They also carried 40,000 cubic meters of snow to the Alpine skiing slopes.
Mongolia, India and North Korea all made their debuts in the Winter Olympics. North Korean Han Pil Hwa became the champion in the women’s 3,000 m speed and thus won her country’s first Olympic Winter medal.
The sport of luge made its Olympic debut.
In Alpine skiing events, timing to a hundredth of a second was introduced.
For the first time ever, the bobsleigh events took place in a track that used artificial ice. This significantly reduced the danger of the competition.
18 year old French athlete Marielle Goitschel won silver in the women’s slalom, while her older sister Christine Goitschel won gold. Two days later, Marielle got her revenge and finished ahead of her big sister in the giant slalom and became the champion.
The USSR athlete Lidia Skoblikova won all of the four women’s speed skating events.
East and West Germany entered a combined team for the last time.
Innsbruck 1964 Winter Olympics website: