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7 March 2012, 11:56 am
Retracing Roots - Amsterdam 1928 Olympic Sailing Competition
1928 Olympic Games Poster
1928 Olympic Games Poster

Olympic Sailing Competition
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam finally got its chance to host the Olympic Games in 1928 after years of waiting with the sailing taking place from 2-9 August.
"It would have been regrettable indeed to see Amsterdam, which with real sporting spirit and international camaraderie had withdrawn in favour of Antwerp [1920] and again in 1921 in favour of Paris [1924], deprived of a satisfaction so long awaited and so properly desired," Pierre de Coubertin.

Despite the long wait for Amsterdam, the sailing competition grew attracting a record number of sailors and a record number of nations. Just like 1924, there were just three classes with the 6- and 8-metre classes and 12-foot dinghy on show.

The Olympic harbour was just five kilometres outside Amsterdam city center with the racing taking place on what is now the enclosed Ijsselmeer, but was then the open Zuiderzee, midway between the bad floods of 1916 and the closing off of the North Sea in 1932.

Norwegian Grip On Olympic Sailing Continues

The Norwegian sailing team had dominated the Olympic Sailing Competition at Stockholm 1912, Antwerp 1920 and Paris 1924 winning a combined 11 gold medals, four silver and one bronze. And at Amsterdam 1928 their grip on sailing in the Olympic Games continued once again.

Spearheaded by Crown Prince of Norway, H.R.H. Crown Prince Olav (second left), the Norwegian team once again topped the sailing medal table with one gold and one silver medal taking their gold medal tally up to 12.

Crown Prince Olav became the first member of a Royal household to win an Olympic medal after he, Johan Anker, Erik Anker and Hakon Bryhn won gold in the 6-metre class.

Estonia Medal First Time Round

In their first Olympic Sailing Competition, Estonia picked up their first Olympic Sailing medal in the 6-metre class.

Nikolai Veksin, William Von Wiren, Konrad Roman Vogdt, Georg Faehlmann and Andreas Faehlmann on board Tutti finished ahead of the Dutch boat Kemphaan to take the bronze medal.

For full results from 1928 click here.

Cowes Week Clash

Cowes Week is one of the longest running regattas in the world that first started in 1826. However in 1928 the Olympic Sailing Competition and Cowes Week clashed.

As Cowes Week was an established event many of the top British sailors chose to sail in Cowes despite the best efforts of the President of the Royal Dutch Yachting Union, who travelled to England in 1927 highlighting how special the Olympic Sailing Competition would be.

The Future

At the 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games sailing took place on the Californian coast at Long Beach. The Star made its first appearance at an Olympic Sailing Competition, albeit as an exhibition event.

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