Christl Cranz

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1
RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameChristel Franziska Antonia "Christl"•Cranz (-Borchers)
Used nameChristl•Cranz
Born1 July 1914 in Bruxelles (Brussels) (BEL)
Died28 September 2004 in Steibis, Oberstaufen, Bayern (GER)
AffiliationsSC Oberstaufen, Oberstaufen (GER)
NOC Germany


The first great German alpine skier, Christl Cranz, brother of Rudi Cranz, dominated the sport in the 1930s. She won twelve world titles, taking all three available titles at the 1937 and 1939 World Championships, while taking two gold medals and a silver at the 1934, 1935 and 1938 editions. Cranz did not compete in the 1936 championships, although she did win the inaugural Olympic title that season. In 1941, Cranz won three more world titles, but this tournament in Cortina d’Ampezzo was declared unofficial by the FIS in 1946, citing lack of Allied participation (only four nations took part). Even without these titles, Cranz’s total of 15 World Championship medals remains unapproached as of 2016, with Anja Pärson coming closest with 13 and Kjetil André Aamodt with 12.

Born in Brussels, her parents fled to Reutlingen during World War I. Cranz later became the poster girl of the “Bund Deutscher Mädchen (BDM)” which was the Nazi organisation for young girls. In 1943, Cranz married ace fighter pilot Adolf Borchers. Following the war, after spending time in a forced labor camp, the couple settled in Steibis, a Bavarian village near the Austrian border. For four decades, they ran a skiing school there. In 1956 and 1960 she was the coach of the German national team, and in 1960 and 1964 she served as a skiing judge at the Olympics. In 1991 she was inducted to the Hall of Fame of the International Foundation of Women’s Sport in New York.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1936 Winter Olympics Alpine Skiing (Skiing) GER Christl Cranz
Combined, Women (Olympic) 1 Gold

Olympic family relations

Special Notes