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Norway won the most medals, the first time a country other than the USSR had done so. Gender tests for women were introduced, as were doping controls for both men and women. The Grenoble Games were also the first to be broadcast in colour.
French hero Jean-Claude Killy swept the men’s Alpine events, but only after great controversy. Killy’s Austrian rival, Karl Schranz, claimed that a race official crossed his path during the slalom race, causing him to skid to a halt. Given a restart, Schranz beat Killy’s time. However, a Jury of Appeal disqualified Schranz and gave the victory to Killy.
Toini Gustafsson of Sweden starred in women’s cross-country skiing, winning both individual races and earning a silver medal in the relay. Lyudmila Belousova and Oleg Protopopov, an elegant married couple from the USSR, successfully defended their pairs figure skating title. Eugenio Monti of Italy piloted his two-man and four-man bobsleighs to gold medals.
The USSR’s Vladimir Belousov and Czechoslovakia’s Jiri Raska won gold and silver in the large hill ski jump. In doing so, they both jumped further than a 100m for the first time in the history of the Games. Jiri Raska also won the normal hill ski jump event.
Athletes: 1,158 (211 women, 947 men)
Appearance of a non-official mascot called "Schuss". He was portrayed as a little cartoon-like character on skis.
The International Olympic Committee’s Medical Commission worked in two different areas- the femininity test and doping controls. It was the first time this had taken place during the Olympic Games.
The Grenoble Games were the first Winter Olympic Games to be broadcast in colour.
The pictogramme of the relevant sport appeared on the Olympic medals.
Owing to an increase in temperature and the track being exposed to too much sun, the luge events were delayed and could not be continued to the end, despite the fact that they were spread out over 12 days. A similar misfortune also befell the bobsleigh events, although they took place on another track. Each time the final ranking was established after the third round, as the fourth had to be cancelled.
Vladimir Belousov (USSR) and Jiri Raska (TCH) were first and second in the large hill ski jump, setting the bar at 100 metres for the first time in the history of the Games. Despite very changeable conditions (a 20° difference), Czech Jiri Raska also won the normal hill ski jump event.
In figure skating, owing to the high number of competitors, the events (compulsory figures) began very early in the morning at 6 a.m., 6.30 a.m. or 7 a.m. depending on the category.
In 1967, the engineers responsible for the speed skating track discovered that using frozen demineralised water produced a faster track than tap water. Thus many world and Olympic records were beaten at these Games, despite the weather conditions not being too favourable.
Grenoble, 6 February 1968. Opening Ceremony. Young girls wearing traditional costume.
Official opening of the Games by:
President Charles de Gaulle
Lighting the Olympic Flame by:
Alain Calmat (figure skating)
Olympic Oath by:
Leo Lacroix (Alpine skiing)
Officials' Oath by:
The officials' oath at an Olympic Winter Games was first sworn in 1972 at Sapporo.
It represents a snow crystal amongst three red roses, the symbol of Grenoble, and the five Olympic rings in monochrome. The words "X Olympic Winter Games - Grenoble 1968" are written around the image.
On the obverse, the official emblem designed by Roger Excoffon.
On the reverse, the pictogram of the relevant discipline, also designed by Roger Excoffon. The process used was a photographic transfer onto acid-impregnated steel. The engraving and finishing work was done by the Coins and Medals Administration in Paris.
For the first time in the history of the Olympic Games, a medal was made for each discipline. In accordance with article 43 of the Olympic Regulations, the first and second place medals were made of 925/000 standard silver. The winners’ medal was covered with six grams of pure gold.
Number of torchbearers: around 5 000 in France
Total distance: 7 222 km in France
Countries crossed: Greece, France
It was created by the publicist Jean Brian. 170,000 copies were produced.
The “Xth Winter Olympic Games: official report” is composed of a two-volume set. Volume 1 addresses the preparation of the Games, and volume 2 their running and competition results. Published in 1969 as a bilingual French/English edition, this was the first official report of a Winter Games available in the IOC’s two official languages.