United States at the 1948 Winter Olympics

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United States at the
1948 Winter Olympics
Flag of the United States (1912-1959).svg
IOC codeUSA
NOCUnited States Olympic Committee
in St. Moritz
Competitors69 (59 men, 10 women) in 9 sports
Flag bearerJohn Heaton (skeleton)
Medals
Ranked 4th
Gold
3
Silver
4
Bronze
2
Total
9
Winter Olympics appearances (overview)
Other related appearances
1906 Intercalated Games

The United States competed at the 1948 Winter Olympics in St. Moritz, Switzerland.

Medalists[edit]

The following U.S. competitors won medals at the games. In the by discipline sections below, medalists' names are bolded.

Alpine skiing[edit]

Men
Athlete Event Run 1 Run 2 Total
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Bob Blatt Downhill N/A 3:27.4 44
Dev Jennings 3:28.2 45
Steve Knowlton 3:26.2 43
Barney McLean 3:30.1 47
Dick Movitz 3:25.2 42
Jack Reddish 3:12.3 26
Steve Knowlton Slalom 1:12.9 16 1:07.6 17 2:20.5 16
Barney McLean 1:20.5 30 1:07.6 17 2:28.1 24
Colin Stewart 1:15.3 23 1:08.8 21 2:24.1 20
Jack Reddish 1:11.0 10 1:04.5 5 2:15.5 7
Women
Athlete Event Run 1 Run 2 Total
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Becky Cremer Downhill N/A 2:44.2 22
Gretchen Fraser 2:37.1 13
Brynhild Grasmoen 2:36.0 12
Paula Kann 2:49.0 28
Andrea Mead-Lawrence 3:03.1 35
Ruth-Marie Stewart 2:42.0 20
Gretchen Fraser Slalom 59.7 1 57.5 2 1:57.2 1st, gold medalist(s)
Brynhild Grasmoen 1:05.6 12 1:04.0 12 2:09.6 9
Paula Kann 1:07.8 16 1:02.0 9 2:09.8 11
Andrea Mead-Lawrence 1:05.1 11 1:03.7 11 2:08.8 8


Combined

The downhill part of the combined events were held concurrently with the individual downhill skiing events. For athletes competing in both events, the same time was used (see table above for the results). The slalom part of the events were held separate from the individual slalom competitions.

Men
Athlete Event Downhill Slalom Total
Time Points Time 1 Time 2 Total Points Points Rank
Bob Blatt Combined 3:27.4 18.09 1:15.6 1:21.4 2:37.0 9.74 27.83 29
Steve Knowlton 3:26.2 17.32 1:15.5 1:14.0 2:29.5 6.42 23.75 25
Barney McLean 3:30.1 19.42 1:16.4 1:11.5 2:27.9 5.73 25.15 26
Jack Reddish 3:12.3 9.71 1:14.1 1:08.8 2:22.9 3.53 13.24 12
Women
Athlete Event Downhill Slalom Total
Time Points Time 1 Time 2 Total Points Points Rank
Becky Cremer Combined 2:44.2 10.11 1:09.4 1:12.5 2:21.9 11.90 22.01 17
Gretchen Fraser 2:37.1 5.50 1:01.8 59.2 2:01.0 1.45 6.95 2nd, silver medalist(s)
Andrea Mead-Lawrence 3:03.1 22.14 1:03.8 1:11.7 2:15.5 8.70 30.84 21
Ruth-Marie Stewart 2:42.0 8.58 1:09.8 1:06.6 2:16.4 9.15 17.73 16

Bobsleigh[edit]

Athlete Event Run 1 Run 2 Run 3 Run 4 Total
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Frederick Fortune
Schuyler Carron
Two-man 1:25.5 8 1:24.1 3 1:22.5 3 1:23.2 3 5:35.3 3rd, bronze medalist(s)
Tuffield A. Latour
Leo J. Martin
1:24.9 4 1:24.8 6 1:24.1 8 1:25.4 12 5:39.2 9
James Bickford
Thomas Hicks
Donald Dupree
William Dupree
Four-man 1:17.4 5 1:20.7 2 1:21.8 4 1:21.6 2 5:21.5 3rd, bronze medalist(s)
Francis Tyler
Patrick Martin
Edward Rimkus
William D'Amico
1:17.1 2 1:19.6 1 1:21.4 1 1:22.0 5 5:20.1 1st, gold medalist(s)

Cross-country skiing[edit]

Athlete Event Time Rank
Wendell Broomhall 18 km 1:31:40 65
Corey Engen 1:37:24 75
Don Johnson 1:32:03 66
Ralph Townsend 1:37:12 74
Gordy Wren 1:40:12 77

Figure skating[edit]

Individual
Athlete Event CF FS Total
Rank Rank Points Places Rank
Dick Button Men's singles 1 1 191.177 10 1st, gold medalist(s)
James Grogan 9 6 168.711 62 6
John Lettengarver 4 2 176.400 36 4
Gretchen Merrill Ladies singles 6 11 148.466 73 8
Eileen Seigh 10 10 144.111 110 11
Yvonne Sherman 8 5 149.833 62 6
Pairs
Athletes Event Points Score Rank
Karol Kennedy
Peter Kennedy
Pairs 10.536 59.5 6
Yvonne Sherman
Robert Swenning
10.581 53 4

Ice hockey[edit]

The tournament was marred by controversy before the Games began. The United States sent two hockey teams to compete in St. Moritz, which nearly caused the cancellation of the entire tournament.[1][2] At the center of the issue was amateurism.[3] One team was sponsored by the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC). The USOC was responsible for determining American participation in the Games.[3] The other team was sponsored by the Amateur Hockey Association (AHA) and the Ligue Internationale de Hockey sur Glace (LIHG). The LIHG, under the guidance of founder Wilhelm "Willie" Bernfeld, was responsible for approving the participation of national hockey teams at the Olympics.[4]

The AAU refused to support the AHA's team because they believed that AHA players were "openly paid salaries" and at the time, the Olympics were strictly for amateur players.[5] No resolution was reached before the Games and both teams arrived at St. Moritz ready to play. This created a tense showdown between the USOC's president, Avery Brundage, the LIHG, the Swiss organizing committee and the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The IOC was responsible for the overall running of the Games. The IOC initially ruled that neither team could compete. This incensed the LIHG, which threatened to boycott the Olympics, effectively ending the hockey tournament.[4] The Swiss organizing committee, fearing this eventuality, ignored the IOC's ruling and allowed the AHA team to play in the tournament and the AAU team to march in the opening ceremony.

Eventually the parties agreed to allow the AHA team to play but they would receive no official ranking in the Olympic tournament, and they would not be eligible to win a medal.[4] Because this tournament was also the LIHG (forerunner of the IIHF) World Championship, they maintained a fourth place in that ranking.[6]

Summary
Team Event Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Opposition
Score
Rank
United States men Men's tournament   Switzerland
L 4–5
 Poland
W 23–4
 Italy
W 31–1
 Sweden
W 5–2
 Canada
L 3–12
 Austria
W 13–2
 Great Britain
W 4–3
 Czechoslovakia
L 3–4
DSQ
Roster
Al Opsahl
Bruce Mather
Bruce Cunliffe
Donald Geary
Fred Pearson
Goodwin Harding
Herb Vaningen
Jack Kirrane
Jack Riley
Jack Garrity
Ralph Warburton
Robert Baker
Bob Boeser
Stan Priddy
Tournament
Pld W L T GF GA Pts
 Canada 8 7 0 1 69 5 15
 Czechoslovakia 8 7 0 1 80 18 15
  Switzerland 8 6 2 0 67 21 12
 Sweden 8 4 4 0 55 28 8
 Great Britain 8 3 5 0 39 47 6
 Poland 8 2 6 0 29 97 4
 Austria 8 1 7 0 33 77 2
 Italy 8 0 8 0 24 156 0
 United States DSQ 8 5 3 0 86 33 (10)
  • Switzerland 5-4 USA
  • USA 23-4 Poland
  • USA 31-1 Italy
  • USA 5-2 Sweden
  • Canada 12-3 USA
  • USA 13-2 Austria
  • USA 4-3 United Kingdom
  • Czechoslovakia 4-3 USA

Nordic combined[edit]

The cross-country skiing part of this event was combined with the main medal event, meaning that athletes competing here were skiing for two disciplines at the same time. Details can be found above in this article, in the cross-country skiing section.

The ski jumping (normal hill) event was held separate from the main medal event of ski jumping, results can be found in the table below. Athletes would perform three jumps, of which the two best jumps (distance and form) were counted.

Athlete Event Cross-country Ski Jumping Total
Time Points Rank Distance 1 Distance 2 Points Rank Points Rank
Corey Engen Individual 1:34:24 132.00 34 65.5 64.0 214.8 3 346.80 26
Don Johnson 1:32:03 157.50 28 57.0 59.0 187.6 27 345.10 27
Ralph Townsend 1:37:12 138.00 33 61.0 58.0 188.7 24 326.70 33
Gordy Wren 1:40:12 120.00 36 66.5 68.5 220.2 2 340.20 29

Skeleton[edit]

Athlete Event Run 1 Run 2 Run 3 Run 4 Run 5 Run 6 Total
Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank Time Rank
Jack Heaton Men's 48.1 5 47.4 1 47.7 2 1:00.0 2 1:00.2 1 1:01.2 5 5:24.6 2nd, silver medalist(s)
William Johnson 47.7 2 48.4 5 48.0 4 DNF
Mac MacCarthy 48.8 8 48.3 4 49.4 12 1:03.6 9 1:02.7 9 1:02.7 8 5:35.5 8
William Martin 47.8 3 49.2 11 48.2 5 1:00.7 3 1:01.6 5 1:00.5 3 5:28.0 4

Ski jumping[edit]

Athlete Event Jump 1 Jump 2 Total
Distance Distance Points Rank
Walter Bietila Normal hill 61.0 64.0 (fall) 142.9 42
Sverre Fredheim 66.0 65.0 210.1 12
Joe Perrault 61.0 67.0 207.0 15
Gordy Wren 68.0 68.5 222.8 5

Speed skating[edit]

Athlete Event Time Rank
Ken Bartholomew 500 m 43.2 2nd, silver medalist(s)
Bobby Fitzgerald 43.2 2nd, silver medalist(s)
Ken Henry 43.3 5
Del Lamb 43.6 6
Ray Blum 1500 m 2:23.4 20
Bobby Fitzgerald 2:27.0 28
Ken Henry 2:24.6 22
Johnny Werket 2:20.2 6
Ray Blum 5000 m 8:54.4 17
Ken Henry 8:56.0 18
Sonny Rupprecht 8:58.4 21
Buddy Solem 9:10.4 27
Sonny Rupprecht 10,000 m 21:20.3 17
Art Seaman 21:34.8 18
Buddy Solem 26:22.4 19
Johnny Werket 19:44.0 11

References[edit]

  • Comité Olympique Suisse (January 1951). Rapport Général sur les Ves Jeux Olympiques d'hiver St-Moritz 1948 (PDF) (in French). Lausanne: H. Jaunin. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
  • "Olympic Medal Winners". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
  • Olympic Winter Games 1948, full results by sports-reference.com
  1. ^ "1948-Winter Olympics V (St. Moritz, Switzerland)". CTV global media. Retrieved 2009-05-28.
  2. ^ "Storms over St. Moritz". Time Magazine. Time Inc. 1948-02-09. Retrieved 2009-05-26.
  3. ^ a b Findling & Pelle (2004), p. 316
  4. ^ a b c Findling & Pelle (2004), p. 317
  5. ^ Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew (2008). "Story #82–USA sends two teams to the 1948 Olympics". International Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 2009-03-10.
  6. ^ Results and commentary in french