Sailing at the 1936 Summer Olympics

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at the Games of the XI Olympiad
Olympische Spiele 1936 - Segelwettbewerbe in Kiel - Gedenktafel.jpg
Olympische Segel Wettbewerbe 1936
(Olympic Sailing Competition 1936)
Venues Firth of Kiel
Dates First race: 4 August 1936 (1936-08-04)
Last race: 12 August 1936 (1936-08-12)
Sailors 166 Male and 3 Female from 26 countries
Boats 59
Top ranked countries
Germany: 1st  2nd  3rd  
Great Britain: 1st  2nd  3rd  
Netherlands: 1st  2nd  3rd  
← 1932
1948 →

Sailing/Yachting is an Olympic sport starting from the Games of the 1st Olympiad (1896 Olympics in Athens, Greece). With the exception of 1904 and possible 1916 sailing was always a part of the Olympic program. The Sailing program of 1936 consisted of a total of four sailing classes (disciplines). For each class seven races were scheduled from 29 August 1936 to 8 September 1936 at the Firth of Kiel.


For the 1936 Berlin Summer Olympics a choice had to be made between the Berliner Müggel Lake district or the Kiel area. Finally the Organizing committee made the decision in favour of the big boats and picked Kiel.[1] As a result of the distance between Berlin to Kiel, a special committee for Yachting sprung to life to assist the Organizing Committee for the XIth Olympiad. Since Kiel was mainly a military port this Committee had to cooperate not only with the local authorities but also with the German Fleet Command in Kiel to ensure the success of the races.

Olympic Harbor
Kiel olympiahafen 1936.jpg
Burgee of the Kieler Yacht Club
General information
Status Complete
Type Olympic harbor
Country  Germany
Coordinates 54°20′16″N 10°09′26″E / 54.33778°N 10.15722°E / 54.33778; 10.15722Coordinates: 54°20′16″N 10°09′26″E / 54.33778°N 10.15722°E / 54.33778; 10.15722
Elevation Sealevel

Course areas and courses[edit]

One race area was created to the East of Schilksee and two in the harbor area more into the Firth of Kiel. Near the course areas tribunes on barges and on land were placed for spectators.[2]

1936 Olympic Course Areas
Open street map view of the current map of Firth of Kiel. Projected are the 1936 Olympic sailing courses.
To define the actual course the race committee gave the sequence in which the marks should be rounded.

e.g: Start - 1 port - 7 port - 5 port - 1 port - 5 port - Finish.

The sailing was done on the triangular type Olympic courses. The start was made in the center of a set of 8 numbered marks that were places in a circle. This made it possible to begin and finish every race sailing against the wind, regardless of the direction of the wind. During the starting procedure the sequence of the marks was communicated to the sailors. Starting upwind ensure a fair start of every race.[2] This mark system is, at least in certain German lakes, still in use in many places.

The German Navy, was besides the organization of the race management responsible, with the help of the shipping lines, for keeping the race areas free of undesirable traffic.[2]



Continents Countries Classes Boats Male Female
4 26 4 59 166 3[1]


Map of Participating Sailing Continents at the 1936 Summer Olympics
Green = Participating for the first time
Blue = Participating
Light Blue = Have previously participated
● Asia
● Europe
● North America
● South America


Map of Participating Sailing Countries at the 1936 Summer Olympics
Green = Participating for the first time
Blue = Participating
Light Blue = Have previously participated
 Argentina (ARG)  Austria (AUT)  Belgium (BEL)  Brazil (BRA)
 Canada (CAN)[3]  Chile (CHI)  Czechoslovakia (TCH)  Denmark (DEN)
 Estonia (EST)  Finland (FIN)  France (FRA)  Great Britain (GBR)
 Germany (GER)  Hungary (HUN)  Italy (ITA)  Japan (JPN)
 Netherlands (NED)  Norway (NOR)  Poland (POL)  Portugal (POR)
 Switzerland (SUI)  Sweden (SWE)  Turkey (TUR)  United States (USA)
 Uruguay (URU)  Yugoslavia (YUG)

Classes (equipment) [4][edit]

The 1936 Olympic classes
Class Type Venue Event Sailors First OG Olympics so far
O-Jolle Dinghy Kiel Cercle noir 100%.svg Max. 1
Max. 1 substitute
1936 1
Star Keelboat Los Angeles Cercle noir 100%.svg Max. 2
Max. 2 substitutes
1932 2
6 Metre Keelboat Los Angeles Cercle noir 100%.svg Max. 5
Max. 5 substitutes
1908 7
8 Metre Keelboat Los Angeles Cercle noir 100%.svg Max. 6
Max. 6 substitutes
1908 7
Legend: Cercle noir 100%.svg = Mixed gender event
The 1936 Olympic Classes in action[2]

Race schedule[edit]

 ●  Opening ceremony  ●  Event competitions  ●  Final races  ●  Closing ceremony
Date August
Sailing (planning)[2]

Total gold medals 4

Medal summary [4][edit]

Event Gold Silver Bronze
O-Jolle insigna.png

1936: O-Jolle

 Netherlands (NED)
Daan Kagchelland
 Germany (GER)
Werner Krogmann
 Great Britain (GBR)
Peter Scott
NO Class insigna.png

1936: Star

 Germany (GER)
Peter Bischoff
Hans-Joachim Weise
 Sweden (SWE)
Arvid Laurin
Uno Wallentin
 Netherlands (NED)
Bob Maas
Willem de Vries Lentsch
6 Metre insigna.png

1936: 6 Metre

 Great Britain (GBR)
Christopher Boardman
Miles Bellville
Russell Harmer
Charles Leaf
Leonard Martin
 Norway (NOR)
Magnus Konow
Karsten Konow
Fredrik Meyer
Vaadjuv Nyqvist
Alf Tveten
 Sweden (SWE)
Sven Salén
Lennart Ekdahl
Martin Hindorff
Torsten Lord
Dagmar Salén
8 Metre insigna.png

1936: 8 Metre

 Italy (ITA)
Giovanni Reggio
Bruno Bianchi
Luigi De Manincor
Domenico Mordini
Enrico Poggi
Luigi Poggi
 Norway (NOR)
Olaf Ditlev-Simonsen
John Ditlev-Simonsen
Hans Struksnæs
Lauritz Schmidt
Jacob Thams
Nordahl Wallem
 Germany (GER)
Hans Howaldt
Fritz Bischoff
Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach
Eduard Mohr
Felix Scheder-Bieschin
Otto Wachs

Sailing 1936[edit]

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Germany (GER) 1 1 1 3
2  Great Britain (GBR) 1 0 1 2
 Netherlands (NED) 1 0 1 2
4  Italy (ITA) 1 0 0 1
5  Norway (NOR) 0 2 0 2
6  Sweden (SWE) 0 1 1 2
Total 4 4 4 12

Sailing 1896–1936[edit]

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Norway (NOR) 12 7 1 20
2  Great Britain (GBR) 11 4 3 18
3  France (FRA) 8 10 13 31
4  Sweden (SWE) 5 5 4 14
5  Netherlands (NED) 3 4 2 9
6  Belgium (BEL) 2 2 1 5
 Germany (GER) 2 2 1 5
8  United States (USA) 2 1 2 5
9  Mixed team (ZZX) 2 0 0 2
10  Switzerland (SUI) 1 1 0 2
11  Italy (ITA) 1 0 0 1
12  Denmark (DEN) 0 3 0 3
13  Finland (FIN) 0 1 4 5
14  Canada (CAN) 0 1 1 2
15  Spain (ESP) 0 0 1 1
 Estonia (EST) 0 0 1 1
 Russia (RUS) 0 0 1 1
Total 17 49 41 35 125

Ranking of the countries over the years[edit]

Graphic that showed the changes in the standing of the countries over the years.


  • A floating transmission station was used for reporting the race events to shore.[1]
  • New media was also used in the protest room. On the footage made from a Zeppelin, for the film Olympia of Leni Riefenstahl, an incident was observed by the jury between Sweden and Finland in race No. VI of the 8 Metre. As result both teams were disqualified.[2]

Other information[edit]


  • This Summer Olympics established Sailing as a full mature Olympic sport after a long struggle to get a unified International standard set of rules.
  • Each Olympic Gold medalist was also given a plant during the prize giving ceremony.
  • Spain withdrew from sailing before the opening ceremony, as part of its boycott of the 1936 Summer Olympics.
  • The Swiss 6 Metre was eliminated for all races since the helmsmen turned out not to be an amateur.
  • Many protests in the Metre classes were filed. Speculations were made about whether this was due to the scoring system. One of the reasons was probably the close racing.
  • The Olympic flame was burning on a Hanseatic galleon in the harbor of Kiel.[1]
  • In total a number of 257 participants were entered. 169 of them competed, the others were reserves or team managers and so on.[1]


During the sailing regattas at the 1936 Summer Olympics among others the following persons were competing in the various classes:

Sailors at the 1936 Olympic Games
In O-Jolle:
Peter Scott 
In 8 Metre:
Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach (Owner/Crewmember). 
In 8 Metre:
Hans Howaldt (Skipper). 

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e (ed.) Richter, Dr. Friedrich (1936). The XITH Olympic Games Berlin, 1936: Officiel Report, Volume I (PDF). Berlin: the Organisationskomitee für die XI. Olympiade Berlin 1936 e.V. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f (ed.) Richter, Dr. Friedrich (1936). The XITH Olympic Games Berlin, 1936: Officiel Report, Volume II (PDF). Berlin: the Organisationskomitee für die XI. Olympiade Berlin 1936 e.V. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  3. ^ Hugh Drake & Paul Henderson (2009). Canada's Olympic Sailing Legacy, Paris 1924 – Beijing 2008. Toronto: CYA. 
  4. ^ a b Kubatko, Justin. "Sailing at the 1936 Berlin Summer Games". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 17 May 2015.