Veli Saarinen

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Veli Saarinen
Veli Saarinen.jpg
Saarinen in the 1930s
Personal information
Born16 September 1902
Martinsaari, Finland
Died12 October 1969 (aged 67)
Helsinki, Finland
Height173 cm (5 ft 8 in)
Weight65 kg (143 lb)
SportCross-country skiing
ClubKouvolan Hiihtoseura
Lahden Hiihtoseura

Veli Selim Saarinen (16 September 1902 – 12 October 1969) was a Finnish cross-country skier who competed in the 1928 and 1932 Olympics.

In 1928 he finished fourth in the 18 km race. Four years later he won a gold in the 50 km and a bronze in the 18 km event, becoming the first Finnish cross-country skier to win an Olympic gold medal. Yet his biggest success came at the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, where he won six medals between 1926 and 1934, including three gold medals.[1]

Domestically Saarinen won only two titles, over 50 km in 1930–31. In 1934 he retired from competitions and later coached the German (1934–1937) and Finnish (1937–1968) national cross-country skiing teams. In 1947–1968 he also served as a chief executive of the Finnish Skiing Federation.[1]


  1. ^ a b Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Veli Saarinen". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC.

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