Walter Plaikner

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 1
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameWalter•Plaikner
Used nameWalter•Plaikner
Born24 October 1951 in Chienes, Bolzano-Bozen (ITA)
Measurements170 cm / 65 kg
AffiliationsSlittino Club Kiens
NOC Italy


Walter Plaikner only competed in doubles, always paired with Paul Hildgartner. Plaikner started racing in 1968 and participated in two Winter Olympics, winning the 1972 doubles gold medal in a tie for first place with the East German double Horst Hörnlein and Reinhard Bredow. He retired from racing after the disappointing 11th place finish at Innsbruck in 1976, the race in which he almost could not participate because of a nasty flu. During his career Plaikner also won one gold and one bronze medal at the World Championships in 1971 and 1973, respectively. The pair of Hildgartner/Plaikner won two European titles in doubles in 1971 and 1974. In his last season, 1976, they won the doubles World Cup. After coaching in Japan until Nagano in 1998 and in the United States through 2002, Plaikner was head coach of the Italian national luge team for several years. In 2013 he was appointed head coach of the Russian luge team preparing for their home Olympics in 2014. In 2007, Plaikner was named Chairman of the Technical Commission of the International Luge Federation (FIL).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1972 Winter Olympics Luge ITA Walter Plaikner
Doubles, Open (Olympic) Paul Hildgartner =1 Gold
1976 Winter Olympics Luge ITA Walter Plaikner
Doubles, Open (Olympic) Paul Hildgartner 11

Special Notes