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Per Samuelshaug

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full namePer•Samuelshaug
Used namePer•Samuelshaug
Born26 August 1905 in Alvdal (NOR)
Died4 January 1990 in Alvdal (NOR)
AffiliationsTynset IF, Tynset (NOR)
NOC Norway


Per Samuelshaug was born in Alvdal, a mountain community far north in the Østerdalen Valley with rich skiing traditions. The municipality even has a pair of skis in their coat-of-arms. Samuelshaug was a big local hero when he placed ninth in the 1933 Holmenkollen 18 km cross-country race, and the local interest exploded when in 1935 he placed third both in the 18 km and 50 km. His Olympic appearance in 1936 was a disappointment for him and his local followers, as he gave up the race at the halfway point with extremely bad skis. But in 1937 he came back strongly and won the Holmenkollen 50 km after a close battle with the Swedish skier Nils Englund, bronze medalist from the 50 km race in the 1936 Olympics. The excitement in his home community was enormous. It is said that an old man, bedridden by illness, became so excited that he left his bed for the first time in 10 years! Writer and humorist from Alvdal, Kjell Aukrust, wrote a play 25 years later about Samuelshaug’s Holmenkollen victory called “Dobbelsats og freske fraspark” (Double takeoff and fresh push-offs), and the play became a big success. Samuelshaug became a farmer and died in Alvdal in 1990, aged 85.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1936 Winter Olympics Cross Country Skiing (Skiing) NOR Per Samuelshaug
50 kilometres, Men (Olympic) AC