Fritz Traun

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameFriedrich Adolf "Fritz"•Traun
Used nameFritz•Traun
Born29 March 1876 in Wandsbek, Hamburg (GER)
Died11 July 1908 in Wandsbek, Hamburg (GER)
AffiliationsGermania Hamburg, Hamburg (GER)
NOC Germany
Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1


Fritz Traun was a multi-talented sportsman, but was primarily known as a track and field athlete when he competed at the 1896 Olympics. He was Germany’s best middle distance runner of the time, yet failed to qualify in the heats of the 100 and 800 metres in Athens. He then switched to tennis, which he had been playing for several years. He was a board member of the Heidelburg Tennis Club, but was not known as a player. He was beaten by Boland in the singles, but was then invited to join the Irishman in the doubles tournament. The two won that event with considerable ease.

Traun switched his main focus to tennis after the Games, although he would better the German long jump record later that year. He won various tennis tournaments in Germany, his last and biggest success being the Austrian Tournament in Praha of 1902, where he won both the singles and doubles. In the winter of 1904, he competed with his bobsled “Hansa” at various St. Moritz competitions, achieving some good results. He was one of the founders of the German Golf Federation and served as their secretary, and was a co-founder and secretary general of the Hamburg Golf Club. Traun was also a keen automobile collector.

In the winter of 1902-03, Traun developed tuberculosis and spent much of the next few years at spas and resorts in Europe, attempting to treat the disease. In 1908, he married Friedel Preetorius, and they left for a three-month honeymoon by car. After returning to Germany, they settled in a Hamburg hotel. On the morning of 11 July 1908, a woman entered Traun’s hotel, met with him, and announced that she and Traun were also married. After their meeting, he shot and killed himself in the bathroom of his apartment. Her identity and the validity of her claim was never revealed, but it seems probable that Traun killed himself rather than face the ensuing scandal. Traun, who worked for his father’s company, left his wife behind pregnant, and their daughter, Lieselotte, was born six months after his death.

Personal Bests: 100 – unknown; 800 – 2.08.1y (1895).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1896 Summer Olympics Athletics GER Fritz Traun
100 metres, Men (Olympic) 3 h3 r1/2
400 metres, Men (Olympic) DNS
800 metres, Men (Olympic) 3 h1 r1/2
110 metres Hurdles, Men (Olympic) DNS
High Jump, Men (Olympic) DNS
Pole Vault, Men (Olympic) DNS
Long Jump, Men (Olympic) DNS
Triple Jump, Men (Olympic) DNS
Tennis GER Fritz Traun
Singles, Men (Olympic) =8
Doubles, Men (Olympic) John Pius Boland 1 Gold

Special Notes