Ivar Ballangrud

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games • Other
Full nameIvar Eugen•Ballangrud (Eriksen-)
Used nameIvar•Ballangrud
Born7 March 1904 in Lunner, Viken (NOR)
Died1 June 1969 in Trondheim, Trøndelag (NOR)
Measurements180 cm
AffiliationsOslo SK, Oslo (NOR) / Drammens SK, Drammen (NOR)
NOC Norway
Medals OG
Gold 4
Silver 2
Bronze 1
Total 7


Ivar Ballangrud is one of the all-time speed skating greats. In the Olympics, he has won four titles and seven medals in total, the latter record only being matched among male speed skaters by contemporary Clas Thunberg. Ballangrud also won the World Championships four times (1926, 1932, 1936, 1938) - a feat only bettered by two skaters. He was also successful in the European Championships, winning it four times (1929, 1930, 1933, 1936), with his 1930 victory achieved by winning all four distances. Ballangrud was best in the longer distances, and set five world records in distances ranging from 3,000 m to 10,000 m. In 1932, he also clocked a remarkable 16:46.4 in the 10,000 m, which was not recognized as a World Record because it was skated in a North American packstyle race. At home, Ballangrud won five Norwegian titles between 1926 and 1939. Retiring in 1939, Ballangrud attempted a comeback for the 1948 Olympics, but failed.

Ballangrud was born as Ivar Eriksen, but received a new surname when his mother remarried after his father’s death. He worked in his own sporting good store in Drammen, and later Trondheim. His home town, Jevnaker, has honoured the speed skater with a statue on the town’s market square.

Personal Bests: 500 – 42.7 (1939); 1500 – 2:14.0 (1939); 5000 – 8:17.2 (1936); 10000 – 17:14.4 (1938).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1928 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) NOR Ivar Ballangrud
1,500 metres, Men (Olympic) 3 Bronze
5,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
1932 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) NOR Ivar Ballangrud
500 metres, Men (Olympic) DNS
1,500 metres, Men (Olympic) 3 h2 r1/2
5,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 5
10,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 2 Silver
1936 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) NOR Ivar Ballangrud
500 metres, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
1,500 metres, Men (Olympic) 2 Silver
5,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
10,000 metres, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold

Olympic Records

Records may have been broken subsequently during the same competition.
Games Date Sport Event Phase Mark Pos
1936 Winter Olympics 11 February 1936 Speed Skating (Skating) 500 metres, Men Final Standings 43.4 1
1936 Winter Olympics 12 February 1936 Speed Skating (Skating) 5,000 metres, Men Final Standings 8:19.6 1
1936 Winter Olympics 13 February 1936 Speed Skating (Skating) 1,500 metres, Men Final Standings 2:20.2 2
1936 Winter Olympics 14 February 1936 Speed Skating (Skating) 10,000 metres, Men Final Standings 17:24.3 1

Other participations

Games Role NOC As
1936 Winter Olympics Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony NOR Ivar Ballangrud

Special Notes