Austria at the Winter Olympic Games
Austria made its first appearance at the Winter Olympic Games in Chamonix in 1924 and has sent athletes to all Winter Olympics since then. Although the tiny nation is a minnow at the Summer Olympic Games, the nation is an immovable force at the Winter Games, the testament of this is the nation’s dominance in alpine skiing where it has won the most medals of any country.
Austria won two gold medals at the inaugural 1924 Winter Games thanks to Herma Planck-Szabó who ruled the ladies’ singles event in figure skating and the tandem of Helene Engelmann and Alfred Berger who won the pair skating event also in figure skating.
Other notable Austrian athletes at the Winter Games include Felix Gottwald 7 medals (4 gold) in Nordic Combined, Thomas Morgenstern 4 medals (3 gold) in Ski Jumping, Hermann Maier 4 medals (2 gold) in Alpine Skiing, Toni Sailer 3 medals (2 gold) and Trude Jochum-Beiser 3 medals (2 gold) also in Alpine Skiing.
Austria’s most productive Winter Games was in Turin in 2006 where the nation won 9 gold medals.
- In Cortina d'Ampezzo in 1956, when Austria's Ingrid Wendl's who won a bronze in individual figure skating, she was the lone exception to the USA who won the other five of the six medals on offer.
- Also in Cortina d'Ampezzo in 1956, Toni Sailer of Austria became the first skier to sweep all three Alpine events.
- The Winter Olympics has been held in Austria twice, both times in the city of Innsbruck in 1964 and 1976.
- Austrian Franz Klammer won gold in the downhill skiing event in Innsbruck in 1976.
- In the 1998 Nagano Games, there was a spectacular "human-cannonball" fall by Austrian Hermann "The Herminator" Maier in the men's downhill. The fall ruined his chances as favorite in the event, but incredibly he got back on his skis again to win gold medals in the Super-G and the Giant Slalom events.
- Austrian Matthias Mayer won the men's downhill event in 2014. His father, Helmut Mayer, won a silver medal in Super-G in 1988 at Calgary.
- Austria at the Summer Olympics
- More Winter Olympics Countries
- Winter Olympics main page.
- About Sport in Austria