| Event type

10,000 metres, Men

Date14 February 1976 — 9:00
LocationEisschnellaufbahn im Olympiaeisstadion, Innsbruck
Participants20 from 12 countries
Olympic Record 15:01.35 / Ard Schenk NED / 7 February 1972
StarterGerhard SpinkaAUT
RefereeViktor KapitonovURS

Sten Stensen had already won the 5,000 in Innsbruck and was expected to finish the distance double with the 10K. He had recently set the world record at the 1976 European Championships in Oslo, and had also won the distance at the 1975 Europeans and the 1974 World Championships. The race was held during a snowfall. The early leader was Hans van Helden, who had already won bronzes in Innsbruck in the 1,500 and 5,000, and who finished in 15:02.02. Stensen was up two pairs later and started faster and finished faster than Van Helden, crossing in 14:53.30. In the eighth pair was Piet Kleine, who had won a silver medal in the 5,000. Kleine started at a moderate pace, and was behind Stensen for 12 laps. But he then caught him, and gradually pulled away, finishing in 14:50.59, the second fastest time ever and only 0.28 off Stensen’s world record.

A few weeks later, Kleine won the 1976 World Championships, winning the 1,500 and 10K at that meet. One month later, at a meet in Inzell, West Germany, Kleine broke the world record in the 5,000, the 10,000, and the samalog. His gold medal also earned him a job. He was out of work, which he mentioned in an interview, and Dutch minister Harry van Doom found him one as a mailman. For Van Helden, Innsbruck was a successful Olympics, if not fully satisfying. He won three medals but they were all bronze. Stensen was near the end of his career. Primarily a distance skater, he was the 1974 World Champion and 1975 European Champion.

18OPiet KleineNED14:50.59GoldOR
26OSten StensenNOR14:53.30SilverOR
34IHans van HeldenNED15:02.02Bronze
45OViktor VarlamovURS15:06.06
53IÖrjan SandlerSWE15:16.21
66IColin CoatesAUS15:16.80
71ODan CarrollUSA15:19.29
83OFranz KrienbühlSUI15:36.43
94OOlavi KöppäFIN15:39.73
1010IAmund SjøbrendNOR15:43.29
1111OSergey MarchukURS15:43.81
129IMike WoodsUSA15:53.42
139OLennart CarlssonSWE15:53.89
1411IJan Egil StorholtNOR16:06.37
158IVladimir IvanovURS16:16.20
162IMasahiko YamamotoJPN16:20.83
172OMaurizio MarchettoITA16:22.55
187OGeoff SandysGBR16:26.27
1910OCharles GilmoreUSA16:26.35
205IHubert GundolfAUT17:52.43fall