| Event type

Downhill, Women

Date 1 February 1956 — 11:30
LocationCanalone, Cortina d'Ampezzo
Participants47 from 16 countries
Course SetterUNK
DetailsGates: 20
Length: 1552 m
Start Altitude: 2114 m
Vertical Drop: 502 m

Switzerland’s Ida Schöpfer was World Champion in 1954 in the downhill and combined but she had retired by the time of the Cortina Winter Olympics. This left the favorite’s role to her teammate, Madeleine Berthod, who had won two silvers at the Bad Gastein Worlds in 1954. Canada’s Lucille Wheeler was the third starter and her time of 1:45.9 was leading as Berthod entered the start gate. Berthod shattered Wheeler’s mark, finishing in 1:40.7, and was never challenged, as only Swiss teammate Frieda Dänzer came within five seconds of her time to win silver. Berthod’s winning margin of 4.7 seconds is the largest ever by a woman in Olympic Alpine history. Wheeler’s time comfortably held on for the bronze medal.

16Madeleine BerthodSUI1:40.7Gold
220Frieda DänzerSUI1:45.4Silver
34Lucile WheelerCAN1:45.9Bronze
=412Giuliana Chenal-MinuzzoITA1:47.3
=415Hilde HofherrAUT1:47.3
61Carla MarchelliITA1:47.7
721Thea HochleitnerAUT1:47.9
818Josette NevièreFRA1:49.2
97Borghild NiskinNOR1:49.5
1028Gladys WernerUSA1:49.6
1126Anna PellissierITA1:49.7
1222Trude KleckerAUT1:50.6
1323Putzi FrandlAUT1:51.0
1451Aleksandra ArtyomenkoURS1:51.1
=1530Eivor BerglundSWE1:51.6
=1532Rosemarie ReichenbachSUI1:51.6
1710Barbara GrocholskaPOL1:51.7
1829Ingrid EnglundSWE1:51.8
1911Maria KowalskaPOL1:51.9
2016Ossi ReichertGER1:52.3
2114Marysette AgnelFRA1:52.4
=2237Anne HeggtveitCAN1:53.2
=2231Carlyn KrugerCAN1:53.2
2425Madeleine FrontFRA1:53.6
252Hedi BeelerSUI1:54.0
2639Inger JørgensenNOR1:54.3
279Astrid SandvikNOR1:54.4
2841Slava ZupančičYUG1:54.5
2913Hannelore GlaserGER1:54.7
305Andrea Mead-LawrenceUSA1:55.2
3152Jakobína JakobsdóttirISL1:57.2
3219Sonja SperlGER1:57.8
3353Ginette SeguinCAN1:58.2
3447Penny PitouUSA1:58.9
3550Zandra NowellGBR1:59.0
3640Vera SchenoneITA1:59.2
3717Yevgeniya SidorovaURS1:59.8
3855Dorothy SurgenorUSA2:01.5
3954Christine DavyAUS2:01.6
4046Magdalena MarotineanuROU2:04.0
4149Sue HolmesGBR2:05.0
4238Vivi-Anne WassdahlSWE2:08.0
4345Jean StanfordGBR2:15.1
4448Elena EpuranROU2:27.7
DNF3Edith BonlieuFRA
DNF8Mirl BuchnerGER
DNF33Maria Gąsienica DanielPOL
DNS27Addie PryorGBR
DNS44Betsy SniteUSA