Private Ville Mattila traveled to Chamonix as a reserve skier for Finnish military patrol team and became a last minute replacement to Martti Lappalainen who had fallen ill. The change went unnoticed by most people and even the 1924 Official Report states that Lappalainen competed instead of Mattila, but Mattila’s participation is confirmed by contemporary Finnish reports and a team photograph taken after the finish. Four years later Mattila competed at the Olympics again, finishing 10th in the 18 km race. The year 1928 was also probably Mattila’s best as a competitive skier. Besides his 10th place at the Winter Olympics, he was fourth in the 50 km at the Lahti Ski Games and 19th in 50 km at Holmenkollen. During his sporting career, Mattila worked as a railroad worker and later worked as a police detective.