From Olympic Painting – 6 Curious Anecdotes from the History of the Sport

While the Olympic Games just drag the whole world under their spell, I love to listen especially the anecdotes from the history of the sport in addition to the exciting competitions.

What makes the sports history…

Pictures appear on television, as the first ladies in corsets and long dresses took part in the Olympic archery, it is explained that the Olympic individual time trial in cycling was once all 300 kilometers long or, that Michael Phelps won so many medals, that he is more successful than all Argentina in Olympic sports history.

They are wonderful and even whimsical stories that writes the history of the sport. Did you, for example, that…

1 …ein Tour de France riders went a NAP in the completely opposite direction?

At the Tour de France 1950, at the stage from Perpignan to Nîmes, the Algerians Abdel was Frenchman of Marcel Molines Squad List Zaaf clearly in the lead. Completely drained Zaaf approved himself a break at a sidewalk café and two bottles of white wine allowed himself due to the heat. Through his booze completely Black, he fell asleep comfortable under a tree.

Fortified Zaaf got back on his bike and increased the pace, to catch the field again, without however to note that he made on the way back to the starting point of the stage. Zaaf noticed his mistake at some point as some astonished stragglers from the field against him.

The history of the sport knows other numerous bizarre events at the tour. So the first were excluded in 1904 six months after the removal of the race four overall. They had illegally used cars and railways .

1913 you ran Eugène Christophe Tourmalet on first position over the Col, until on the descent, the fork broke him. There was still a long way no material car, so he wore the device until the next forged14 km. Since third-party assistance prohibited was Christophe repaired his bike before cheering crowd and under full exhaustion even.

With about two hours delay on the tip Christophe, from now on the “old Gaul” called, was ultimately in the target. The leaders acknowledged still an additional penalty him, as a boy in a blacksmith’s shop operated the bellows.

2. …die founder of adidas and Puma were brothers?

Adidas and PUMA are among the world for decades the most successful sporting goods companies. According to Nike they are number two and three on the world market and are yet just five minutes away from each other.

Both come from the same town, Herzogenaurach, a small town near the city of Nuremberg. There was created the modern Athletic Shoe, and there the dispute smolders to this day which the brands have now invented the football boot with the screw-in studs. And that, even though the founder of the big firms bear the same last name.

the history of adidas and PUMA began in 1920 . Adolf Dassler in the laundry room of his mother sewed the first shoes, 1923 with his brother Rudolf entered in the small business, and together they founded “sports shoe factory Brothers Dassler”.

1930, the year production was already 10,500 pair of racing shoes and 18,500 football boots. To the Olympic Games in 1936 in Berlin , all German athletes running shoes in the stadium with Dassler, and the two founded the sports marketing with the sponsorship of the American athlete Jesse Owens. The sports shoe factory of the brothers had unprecedented success. ADI was an expert of tinkerers and craftsmen of the outfit, Rudolf a talent in marketing.

After the war they could keep difficult over water the factory, until 1948 the rift of the brothers, the reasons are not entirely clear until today. ADI founded “Adidas”, Rudolf “Puma”. As according to their names, the companies were originally “Addas” and “Ruda”. Both were popular as a brand.

The small town of Herzogenaurach split in two parties, so the employees of adidas and Puma in different sports clubs played, mixed marriages were absolutely off limits.

The fraternal strife continues also post mortem. Who is popular with its products, and who wants to be original, different perceived in the city. Depending on whether one goes along the Adi-Dassler-Straße 1 at adidas, or visited the Würzburger Straße 1 by Puma.

“The duel of the brothers – the history of adidas and PUMA” is a very exciting, but some fictional film about the formation and the dispute of the two brothers and their companies*.

3… Music, painting and sculpture were Olympic disciplines?

Walter Winans, of the twelve English champion in pistol shooting, had to settle for the 1912 Summer Olympics disappointed to be satisfied with the silver medal. But despite his second place in the Olympic sports competitions, Winans left the games ultimately as Olympic champion – in the sculpture!

His sculpture named “An American Trotter” was awarded the gold. A small sensation, since 1912 Olympic medals were awarded the first time for artistic achievements. Poets, composers, painters, or architects fought in in total 66 competitions for the title of Olympic champion. In categories such as commercial art, the art of medal or marching music, they presented their works and designs of a jury. The only condition: the art had to be inspired by sport .

Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympic Games was responsible for this – quirky today – competitions. He sought equal participation of athletes and artists, a unity of body and spirit. Also the ancient model of the competitions singer, painter or actor involved, whereupon he relied.

Over the following decades, the competitions were held once more, even less successful.

Finally, were art disciplines of the games of 1936 was carried through the propaganda and the art Committee of the Nazis, which cleaned the land of “degenerate art” , within a short time to the grave. After the second world war, the organizers in London have launched a last attempt to revive the art competitions. This was however in the sand.

The filmmaker Alexa Oona Schulz made a documentation about the fascinating background of these events: fire and flame for the art – history of the Olympic art competitions from 1912-1948 *.

4. …der most successful runner of the Olympic Games 2000 years is dead?

swimmer Michael Phelps can be 22 Olympic gold medals in the meantime own call. Nine season competitions with the U.S. swimming team, 13 won in individual events.

Thus he has now more a single victory than the previous record holder. Leonidas of Rhodes, a Greek sprinter, was the most successful athlete in the Olympic Games. For 2200 years!

In 164, 160, 156 and 152 BC, he sat three times each as winners of running competitions to the top and was due to its triple success of “Triastes” – who dubbed “Triple”. At that time, the Olympics were a gigantic spectacle. With a difference: From the first held in 776 BC to the last in the 4th century AD they took place at the same venue – in the sanctuary of Zeus at Olympia.

Leonidas had never received only real gold medals compared to Phelps. The winners of old contests reward received a wreath of olive branches from the sacred Grove of Zeus, place two and three were empty.

5… Were soccer balls originally filled with a pig’s bladder?

When the teacher Konrad Koch in Brunswick in 1874 with his students organized the first football match of in Germany, the utensil ordered in England was still shaped like a rugby-EI. For practical reasons it was quickly changed to a round shape.

This first round balls from the end of the 19th century were made of leather and pig bladder. Through a slot, the individual pieces, hand-sewn Leather Sheath was filled with the bubble and then closed with a lacing .

This lacing resulted in particularly nasty wounds in head balls, but due to lack of suitable alternatives, was until the mid-20th century with this laced pig bladder-ball play, later a tube with a valve this method succeeded.

The model, which is still regarded as a Classic soccer , developed by adidas 1970 World Cup in Mexico. Television made better noticed the ball in the black and white, five black Pentagons and 20 white hexagons as a pattern.

A very beautiful film about the beginnings of football in Germany by the teacher Konrad Koch is filmed with Daniel Brühl 2010 “very big dream”*.

6… Sack race was regarded as Olympic competition?

The grounds of the modern games it was decided around 1896 arbitrarily what disciplines should be included in the contests.

Especially in the period before the first world war was the selection of competitions still quite bizarre, as I described in point 3. But I would not deprive also these disciplines of sports history you – it’s just too strange!

There were Olympic walking stick fencing until 1924 quite in the style of real gentleman. Also an obstacle swimming in the Paris Seine took place 1900, where athletes climb of boats had in the meantime. Very very beautiful, I think the idea that the gold medal was awarded in the sack race. At the games by St. Louis 1904 the transitions of sports disciplines to year mark fact consists were probably quite fluent.

So, the participants had to jump tons jumping every 50 metres by barrels suspended on ropes. Also in the tobacco spitting and sack race , winners were crowned.

Would that not a crazy idea to see these competitions in Rio today?

Which of these anecdotes from the history of the sport did you know already, or do you have to add even more exciting?