| Event type

100 metres, Men

Date6 – 7 July 1912
LocationStockholms Olympiastadion, Stockholm
Participants70 from 22 countries

The event was considered wide-open at the beginning of the year, as no sprinter had been dominant since the 1908 Olympics. From 1909-1911 three different American sprinters had won the AAU Championship (William Martin [1909], James Rosenberger [1910], Gwinn Henry [1911]), but none of them competed at Stockholm in this event. South Africa’s George Patching was also present, who had won the 1912 AAA Championship earlier in the year. At the three United States Olympic Trials, Ira Courtney won the western trial, Clement Wilson the central and Howard Drew the eastern trial. In the eastern meet, Ralph Craig finished second to Drew. The world record for 100 metres was 10.5, shared by three Germans, Richard Rau, Erwin Kern, and Emil Ketterer. All three competed at Stockholm, but Ketterer did not finish in round one, and Rau and Kern were eliminated in the semi-finals.

In the first round, America’s Donald Lippincott broke the Olympic record in heat 16 with a 10.6 clocking. The six semi-finals advanced only the winner of each heat to the final. Five of the finalists were from the United States - Ralph Craig, Howard Drew, Alvah Meyer, Frank Belote, and Lippincott. The fastest times in the semis were 10.7, posted by both Craig and Meyer.

The final began without Drew, who had strained a muscle at the finish of his semi-final heat and could not start. The final was marked by multiple false starts - listed as six, seven, or eight in various sources. After one of the false starts, Craig and Lippincott ran the entire 100 metres. Craig noted many years later, “There were seven false starts, and I made one of them. Another American who had competed in the Paris Games - those 1900 Games were kind of horrendous, you know - he told me if you ever get to the Olympics, if anyone moves a muscle, you go too. Don Lippincott and I ran the whole hundred meters on one false start. The foreign officials were totally incompetent, and I was afraid not to keep running even though they fired the recall gun. I was told, don’t take a chance - go! - so I did. They did fire the recall gun, but I didn’t believe it.”

After the false starts, Patching took the early lead but he was eventually defeated by three Americans, with Craig winning narrowly. Craig would later make the 1948 Olympic team as a yachtsman, and he carried the U.S. flag at the 1948 Opening Ceremony, but he was only an alternate and did not actually compete at the 1948 London Olympics.

1Ralph CraigUSA11.2 (1 h17)10.7 (1 h4)10.8 (1)Gold
2Alvah MeyerUSA11.3 (1 h9)10.7 (1 h3)10.9est (2)Silver
3Donald LippincottUSA10.6 (1 h16)10.7 (1 h5)10.9est (3)Bronze
4George PatchingRSA– (2 h13)10.9 (1 h2)11.0est (4)
5Frank BeloteUSA11.0 (1 h11)11.1 (1 h6)11.0est (5)
1 h1 r2/3Howard DrewUSA11.0 (1 h15)11.0 (1 h1)
2 h1 r2/3Ira CourtneyUSA11.2 (1 h3)– (2 h1)
2 h2 r2/3Knut LindbergSWE11.6 (1 h8)11.1est (2 h2)
2 h3 r2/3David JacobsGBR10.8 (1 h10)– (2 h3)
2 h4 r2/3Richard RauGER11.5 (1 h6)10.9est (2 h4)
2 h5 r2/3Willie ApplegarthGBR– (2 h16)– (2 h5)
2 h6 r2/3Reuben PoveyRSA– (2 h5)– (2 h6)
3 h1 r2/3Peter GerhardtUSA11.1 (1 h12)– (3 h1)
3 h2 r2/3Richard RiceGBR11.4 (1 h4)– (3 h2)
3 h3 r2/3Frank LukemanCAN– (2 h12)– (3 h3)
3 h4 r2/3William StewartANZ11.0 (1 h7)– (3 h4)
3 h5 r2/3Bedřich VygodaBOH– (2 h8)– (3 h5)
3 h6 r2/3Rupert ThomasUSA– (2 h14)– (3 h6)
4 h1 r2/3Erwin KernGER– (2 h15)– (4 h1)
4 h3 r2/3Pál SzalayHUNat ½ metre (2 h2)– (4 h3)
4 h6 r2/3Ivan MöllerSWE11.5 (1 h2)– (4 h6)
5 h1 r2/3Karl August LutherSWE12.8 (1 h1)– (5 h1)
5 h6 r2/3Arthur AndersonGBR11.0 (1 h14)– (5 h6)
6 h1 r2/3Vilmos RáczHUNat 2 metres (2 h6)– (6 h1)
AC h2 r2/3Joseph AelterBEL– (2 h7)– (AC h2)
AC h2 r2/3Franco GiongoITA– (2 h9)– (AC h2)
AC h3 r2/3Rolf SmedmarkSWE– (2 h4)– (DNF h3)
AC h4 r2/3René MourlonFRA– (2 h11)– (AC h4)
AC h4 r2/3István JankovichHUNat 1 metre (2 h3)– (AC h4)
AC h4 r2/3Ferenc SzobotaHUNat 1 metre (2 h17)– (AC h4)
AC h5 r2/3Army HowardCAN11.0 (1 h13)– (AC h5)
AC h5 r2/3Vic d'ArcyGBR11.2 (1 h5)– (AC h5)
AC h5 r2/3Clement WilsonUSA– (2 h10)– (AC h5)
3 h2 r1/3Rudolf RauchAUT– (3 h2)
3 h3 r1/3Pierre FailliotFRA– (3 h3)
3 h5 r1/3António StrompPOR– (3 h5)
3 h6 r1/3Ture PerssonSWE– (3 h6)
3 h11 r1/3Henry MacintoshGBR– (3 h11)
3 h12 r1/3Fritz WeinzingerAUT– (3 h12)
3 h13 r1/3Hal HeilandUSA– (3 h13)
3 h14 r1/3Frank McConnellCAN– (3 h14)
3 h15 r1/3Julien BoulleryFRA– (3 h15)
3 h16 r1/3Max HerrmannGER– (3 h16)
3 h17 r1/3Ragnar EkbergSWE– (3 h17)
4 h3 r1/3Henry BlakeneyGBR– (4 h3)
4 h11 r1/3Hal BeasleyCAN– (4 h11)
4 h12 r1/3Alex PedersenNOR– (4 h12)
4 h13 r1/3Pavel de ShtiglitsRUS– (4 h13)
4 h14 r1/3Skotte JacobssonSWE– (4 h14)
4 h17 r1/3Fritz FleischerAUT– (4 h17)
AC h3 r1/3Ladislav Jiránek-StranaBOH– (AC h3)
AC h3 r1/3Pablo EitelCHI– (AC h3)
AC h6 r1/3Robert SchürrerFRA– (AC h6)
AC h6 r1/3Dimitrios TriantafyllakosGRE– (AC h6)
AC h6 r1/3Leopolds LēvenšteinsRUS– (AC h6)
AC h7 r1/3Charles LelongFRA– (AC h7)
AC h7 r1/3Jan GrijseelsNED– (AC h7)
AC h7 r1/3Richard SchwarzRUS– (AC h7)
AC h8 r1/3Jón HalldórssonISL– (AC h8)
AC h8 r1/3Dušan MiloševićSRB– (AC h8)
AC h9 r1/3Georges RolotFRA– (AC h9)
AC h9 r1/3Robert DuncanGBR– (AC h9)
AC h10 r1/3Václav Labík-GreganBOH– (AC h10)
AC h10 r1/3Marius DelabyFRA– (AC h10)
AC h10 r1/3Herman SotaaenNOR– (AC h10)
AC h12 r1/3Duncan MacmillanGBR– (AC h12)
AC h13 r1/3Emil KettererGER– (DNF h13)
AC h15 r1/3James BarkerGBR– (DNF h15)
AC h16 r1/3Ervin SzerelemhegyiHUN– (AC h16)
AC h16 r1/3Yahiko MishimaJPN– (AC h16)
DNSMaurice ColmanBEL
DNSJean SamazeuilhFRA
DNSAngelo RossiITA
DNSTadeusz GarczyńskiAUT
DNSHenri PuncetFRA
DNSJean ScholsBEL
DNSFrancesco BicchiITA
DNSÉmile LesieurFRA
DNSZdislav PrágrBOH
DNSTivadar CsatóHUN
DNSCharles RiceUSA
DNSAndré GauthierFRA
DNSIstván OndrusHUN
DNSErnest RapinFRA
DNSVilmos RádiHUN
DNSSeth LevinSWE
DNSYury ZakharovRUS
DNSGaston WensBEL
DNSBobby KerrCAN
DNSRodolfo HammersleyCHI
DNSLeopoldo PalmaCHI
DNSNils FixdalNOR
DNSEmil GrandellSWE
DNSEric LindholmSWE
DNSGösta MöllerSWE
DNSKnut StenborgSWE

Round One (6 July 1912 — 13:30-14:15)

Top two in each heat advanced to the semi-finals.

Heat One

1Karl August LutherSWE12.8Qwalkover

Heat Two

1Ivan MöllerSWE11.5Q
2Pál SzalayHUNat ½ metreQ
3Rudolf RauchAUT

Heat Three

1Ira CourtneyUSA11.2Q
2István JankovichHUNat 1 metreQ
3Pierre FailliotFRA
4Henry BlakeneyGBR
ACLadislav Jiránek-StranaBOH
ACPablo EitelCHI

Heat Four

1Richard RiceGBR11.4Q
2Rolf SmedmarkSWEQ

Heat Five

1Vic d'ArcyGBR11.2Q
2Reuben PoveyRSAQ
3António StrompPOR

Heat Six

1Richard RauGER11.5Q
2Vilmos RáczHUNat 2 metresQ
3Ture PerssonSWE
ACRobert SchürrerFRA
ACDimitrios TriantafyllakosGRE
ACLeopolds LēvenšteinsRUS

Heat Seven

1William StewartANZ11.0Q
2Joseph AelterBELQ
ACCharles LelongFRA
ACJan GrijseelsNED
ACRichard SchwarzRUS

Heat Eight

1Knut LindbergSWE11.6Q
2Bedřich VygodaBOHQ
ACDušan MiloševićSRB
ACJón HalldórssonISL

Heat Nine

1Alvah MeyerUSA11.3Q
2Franco GiongoITAQ
ACRobert DuncanGBR
ACGeorges RolotFRA

Heat Ten

1David JacobsGBR10.8Q=OR
2Clement WilsonUSAQ
ACMarius DelabyFRA
ACHerman SotaaenNOR
ACVáclav Labík-GreganBOH

Heat Eleven

1Frank BeloteUSA11.0Q
2René MourlonFRAQ
3Henry MacintoshGBR
4Hal BeasleyCAN

Heat Twelve

1Peter GerhardtUSA11.1Q
2Frank LukemanCANQ
3Fritz WeinzingerAUT
4Alex PedersenNOR
ACDuncan MacmillanGBR

Heat Thirteen

1Army HowardCAN11.0Q
2George PatchingRSAQ
3Hal HeilandUSA
4Pavel de ShtiglitsRUS
DNFEmil KettererGER

Heat Fourteen

1Arthur AndersonGBR11.0Q
2Rupert ThomasUSAQ
3Frank McConnellCAN
4Skotte JacobssonSWE

Heat Fifteen

1Howard DrewUSA11.0Q
2Erwin KernGERQ
3Julien BoulleryFRA
DNFJames BarkerGBR

Heat Sixteen

1Donald LippincottUSA10.6QOR
2Willie ApplegarthGBRQ
3Max HerrmannGER
ACErvin SzerelemhegyiHUN
ACYahiko MishimaJPN

Heat Seventeen

1Ralph CraigUSA11.2Q
2Ferenc SzobotaHUNat 1 metreQ
3Ragnar EkbergSWE
4Fritz FleischerAUT

Semi-Finals (6 July 1912 — 15:45)

Winner in each heat advanced to the final.

Heat One

1Howard DrewUSA11.0Q
2Ira CourtneyUSA
3Peter GerhardtUSA
4Erwin KernGER
5Karl August LutherSWE
6Vilmos RáczHUN

Heat Two

1George PatchingRSA10.9Q
2Knut LindbergSWE11.1est
3Richard RiceGBR
ACFranco GiongoITA
ACJoseph AelterBEL

Heat Three

1Alvah MeyerUSA10.7Q
2David JacobsGBR
3Frank LukemanCAN
4Pál SzalayHUN
DNFRolf SmedmarkSWE

Heat Four

1Ralph CraigUSA10.7Q
2Richard RauGER10.9est
3William StewartANZ
ACIstván JankovichHUN
ACRené MourlonFRA
ACFerenc SzobotaHUN

Heat Five

1Donald LippincottUSA10.7Q
2Willie ApplegarthGBR
3Bedřich VygodaBOH
ACClement WilsonUSA
ACVic d'ArcyGBR
ACArmy HowardCAN

Heat Six

1Frank BeloteUSA11.1Q
2Reuben PoveyRSA
3Rupert ThomasUSA
4Ivan MöllerSWE
5Arthur AndersonGBR

Final (7 July 1912 — 14:45)

13Ralph CraigUSA10.8
22Alvah MeyerUSA10.9est
35Donald LippincottUSA10.9est
44George PatchingRSA11.0est
56Frank BeloteUSA11.0est