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Sport
Olympics Index
The Olympics

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General
GBR Miscellany
History
Host Cities
Sports

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The Olympics

For other Olympics pages, please refer to the Olympics Index.

General

Rings on the Olympic flag Click to show or hide the answer
Site of the original games, where the modern flame starts from Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
The Olympic torch is lit from Click to show or hide the answer
Enters the arena first at the opening ceremony Click to show or hide the answer
Enters the arena last at the opening ceremony Click to show or hide the answer
The only nation to have won at least one gold at every summer Olympiad Click to show or hide the answer
Longest track & field event Click to show or hide the answer
Shortest walking event Click to show or hide the answer
Longest individual swimming event Click to show or hide the answer
Olympic triathlon: distances Swim Click to show or hide the answer
Cycle Click to show or hide the answer
Run Click to show or hide the answer

IOC Presidents

Founder of the modern Olympics: French aristocrat, educationist and historian; first secretary general of the IOC, 1894; succeeded Demetrios Vakelis of Greece to become its second president, 1896 Click to show or hide the answer
Fifth President of the IOC (1952–72) – represented the USA in the pentathlon and decathlon in 1912 Click to show or hide the answer
Sixth President of the IOC (1972–80) – an Irish-born UK peer Click to show or hide the answer
Seventh President of the IOC (1980–2001) – represented Brazil at swimming in 1936 and water polo in 1952 Click to show or hide the answer
Eighth President of the IOC (2001–13) – Belgian surgeon Click to show or hide the answer
Ninth President of the IOC (2013–) – a member of West Germany's gold–medal–winning foil (fencing) team at Montreal 1976 Click to show or hide the answer

GBR Miscellany

Flag Bearers

The custom of athletes marching in teams behind their national flags at the opening ceremony was introduced at the 1906 Intercalated Games. Britain's first flag bearer was William Grenfell, 1st Baron Desborough, a member of the British fencing team which won a silver medal at those games. Grenfell was 50 years old, an Old Harrovian who had rowed for Oxford in the Boat Race in 1877 (the year it was tied) and 1878 (when Oxford won). The son of an MP, he married an MP's daughter and was an MP himself from 1880 to 1905. He was awarded a peerage in 1905, and he went on to be president of the British Olympic Council in time for the 1908 Games in London. He was President of Oxford University Boat Club, the Amateur Fencing Association, the MCC and the LTA.

1920 Silver medallist in the 1500m; went on to be a politician, was Commonwealth Secretary, later Minister for Fuel and Power, in Atlee's government; won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1959 for his advocacy of multilateral nuclear disarmament – the only person to win an Olympic medal and a Nobel prize Click to show or hide the answer

Since 1992: Summer ...

1992, 1996 One of the greatest Olympians of all time – competing at his third and fourth Olympics, where he won the third and fourth of his eventual five golds Click to show or hide the answer
2000 Competing at his third Olympics, where he would win the third of his four gold medals Click to show or hide the answer
2004 The first British judoka to compete at four Olympics; silver medallist in 2000 (and bronze in 1992) Click to show or hide the answer
2008 One of Britain's most successful swimmers of all time, but he never won an Olympic medal Click to show or hide the answer
2012 Four–time Olympic gold medallist, who won two more golds in 2012 to make it six Click to show or hide the answer
2016 Olympic gold medallist in 2012 (and also in 2016) Click to show or hide the answer

... and Winter:

1992 Winner of two gold medals in 1988, when short track speed skating was a demonstration sport, and overall world champion in 1991; but finished 5th in the 1992 Olympics, and crashed out of both events (500m and 1000m) in 1994 Click to show or hide the answer
1994, 1998, 2002 Scottish soldier, skier and biathlete, competing in his fourth, fifth and sixth Olympics (only seven athletes, from any country, have competed at six Winter Olympics) Click to show or hide the answer
2006 Skip (captain) of Britain's gold–medal–winning curling team in 2002 Click to show or hide the answer
2010 Winner of Great Britain's only medal at the 2006 games (silver in the skeleton) Click to show or hide the answer
2014 Short–track speed skater, competing at his third Winter Olympics Click to show or hide the answer

Britain's medal totals at selected Olympiads

See also UK Medals.

  Gold Silver Bronze Total Posn in table
London 1908 56 50 39 145 1
London 1948 3 14 6 23 12
Atlanta 1996 1 8 6 15 36
Sydney 2000 11 10 7 28 10
Athens 2004 9 9 12 30 10
Beijing 2008 19 13 15 47 4
London 2012 29 17 19 65 3
Rio de Janeiro 2016 27 23 17 67 2

1908 remains Great Britain's best ever medals total.

At Rio 2016, China won more medals in total than Great Britain (26 golds, 18 silvers and 26 bronzes – total 70). Team GB were officially ranked 2nd because they had more golds.

Britain's three 100m (men's) gold medallists

1924 Click to show or hide the answer 1980 Click to show or hide the answer 1992 Click to show or hide the answer

History

The first modern Olympics Click to show or hide the answer
Women competed for the first time (in tennis and golf); cricket was an Olympic sport (Great Britain won gold); the only modern summer Olympiad that didn't take place in a leap year (but see the next entry) Click to show or hide the answer
The first and only Intercalated Games: intended to recognise Greece's key role in the history of the Olympics, by having a competition at a permanent venue in Athens, running in parallel with the internationally–organised Olympics Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Women competed in swimming for the first time; Britain's last football gold (beat Denmark 19–1 in the final) Click to show or hide the answer
The first Winter Olympics Click to show or hide the answer
First city to hold the Summer Olympics for a second time Click to show or hide the answer
First country to hold the Winter and Summer Olympics in the same year Click to show or hide the answer
Women first competed in track & field; Olympic flame introduced Click to show or hide the answer
Britain won Ice Hockey gold Click to show or hide the answer
Most northerly city to hold the (modern) Olympics Click to show or hide the answer
Only Southern Hemisphere city to host the Olympics in its first century Click to show or hide the answer
Tony Nash and Robin Dixon won gold for Britain in the 2–man bobsleigh Click to show or hide the answer
Judo became an Olympic sport in Click to show or hide the answer
Dick Fosbury first demonstrated the eponymous flop at Click to show or hide the answer
Women's 1500 metres first contested at Click to show or hide the answer
Ice dancing first included Click to show or hide the answer
Opened by the mother of one of the contestants Click to show or hide the answer
Nadia Comaneci awarded the first perfect 10 in gymnastics (seven in total) Click to show or hide the answer
The only Olympiad where the host nation didn't win gold Click to show or hide the answer
Women's cycling (road race) included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Women's marathon included for the first time (won by the USA's Joan Benoit) Click to show or hide the answer
Synchronised swimming included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Women's track cycling (individual sprint) included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Tennis reinstated (first time since 1924; demonstration sport in 1968 and 1984) Click to show or hide the answer
Britain won gold in the men's hockey Click to show or hide the answer
Baseball included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Beach volleyball first appeared (exhibition sport in Barcelona 1992) Click to show or hide the answer
Women's weightlifting included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer
Women's boxing included for the first time Click to show or hide the answer

Host Cities

Olympiad Year Host city
I 1896 Click to show or hide the answer
II 1900 Click to show or hide the answer
III 1904 Click to show or hide the answer
IV 1908 Click to show or hide the answer
V 1912 Click to show or hide the answer
VI 1916 Click to show or hide the answer

The 1916 Olympics were cancelled because of World War I.

VII 1920 Click to show or hide the answer

Olympiad Year Summer Host City Winter Host City
VIII 1924 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
IX 1928 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
X 1932 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XI 1936 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XII Click for more information 1940 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XIII 1944 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XIV 1948 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XV 1952 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XVI Click for more information 1956 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XVII 1960 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XVIII 1964 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XIX 1968 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XX 1972 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XXI 1976 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XXII 1980 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XXIII 1984 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XXIV 1988 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer
XXV 1992 Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer

Olympiad Year Winter Year Summer
XXVI 1994 Click to show or hide the answer 1996 Click to show or hide the answer
XXVII 1998 Click to show or hide the answer 2000 Click to show or hide the answer
XXVIII 2002 Click to show or hide the answer 2004 Click to show or hide the answer
XXIX 2006 Click to show or hide the answer 2008 Click to show or hide the answer
XXX 2010 Click to show or hide the answer 2012 Click to show or hide the answer
XXXI 2014 Click to show or hide the answer 2016 Click to show or hide the answer
XXXII 2018 Click to show or hide the answer 2020 Click to show or hide the answer
XXXIII 2022 Click to show or hide the answer 2024 Click to show or hide the answer
XXXIV 2026 Click to show or hide the answer 2028 Click to show or hide the answer

Sports

Contested from 1992 to 2008, by men only; dropped in 2012, but will return in 2020 Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Contested by men at every Olympiad except 1912 (it was banned in Sweden at the time), and by women since 2012 Click to show or hide the answer
The Val Barker Trophy is awarded to the best stylist, each Olympiad, in Click for more information
The only sport in which men and women compete against each other in all events (see Sailing) Click to show or hide the answer
Professionals have been allowed since 1984, but in 1984 and 1988 players who had played in a World Cup were banned; in 1992, all players had to be under 23 years old; from 1996, each team has been allowed three over–23 players Click to show or hide the answer
Women first competed in 1996; the USA has won gold every time except 2000, when they lost the final to Norway
Britain stopped competing in 1976 (when it was still men only), being reluctant to field a combined British team – but entered both men's and women's teams in 2012

The two sports introduced in 2016:

Previously contested in 1900 and 1904 Click to show or hide the answer
Cut–down version of a sport previously contested in 1900, 1908, 1920 and 1924 Click to show or hide the answer

Contested in 1900, but dropped in 1904 following animal rights protests and bans in the USA Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Contested in 1900, 1908, 1920, 1924 and 1936 – the last sport to be dropped before Baseball and Softball in 2012 Click to show or hide the answer
Contested by women only (since 1984): synchronised swimming and Click to show or hide the answer
Has classes for men, women and mixed Click to show or hide the answer
Contested from 1996 to 2008 (by women only); dropped for 2012 Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Demonstrated at the 1952 Olympics; recognised by FINA in 1968 as the fourth aquatic sport (after swimming, diving and polo); became an Olympic sport in 1984; contested by women only Click to show or hide the answer
Sculls and the eggbeater kick are the basic skills in
Three sports introduced in 2000: all beginning with T! Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer
Dropped after 1924 due to concerns over professionalism; played as a demonstration sport in 1968 and 1984; returned as a full medal sport in 1988 Click to show or hide the answer

© Haydn Thompson 2017