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Kite Flying Demonstration in 1900

A kite flying event was an unofficial sport at 1900 Olympic Games in Paris, held as part of the ballooning event. The often reported strong gust of wind that blew most of the competitors' kites in to a tree is probably just myth. The 1900 Olympic Games Official Report (in French) gives many details of the competition.

The report from the games mentions two different competitions, one for altitude and another based on several factors. The competition for altitude was held over a one hour period, the winner was the kite with the highest altitude (as verified by instruments recorders attached to the kite). The other competition category required the kite to remain in the air for two hours with 200 meters of cable. The ranking was done by measuring the angle of the line from the kite to the point attachment with the horizontal, the bearing surface, the cable tension dynamometer, and appreciating the stability of the kite.

kids flying kiteskids flying kites

Originally just two categories in the kite competition was planned, however due to the large number of competitors who came with a large range of kites, the Organizing Committee decided to split the competition into three categories - small, medium and large kites. The small kites were mostly toys flown by children, and the prizes were reduced accordingly to a single bronze medal and to small rewards of 20, 10 and 5 francs.

The competition for the small kites was held on the 19th August 1900. Due to lack of adequate winds, the events for larger kites were postponed. The medium kite competition was held on September 27, and the large kite competition was on the 30th September.


Small Kites

  1. Flecheux (France)
  2. Mademoiselle de la Dunard (France)
  3. Heurteau (France)

Medium KitesĀ 

  1. Rouillard (France)
  2. Stoenesco (France)
  3. Mademoiselle de la Dunard (France)

Large KitesĀ 

  1. Lecornu (France)
  2. Louis Baillod (France)

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