|Date||7 February 1972 — 13:31|
|Location||Mount Eniwa, Mount Eniwa|
|Participants||55 from 20 countries|
Length: 2640 m
Start Altitude: ?
Vertical Drop: 772 m
Karl Schranz would have been a big contender but he had been banned from the Olympics by a vote of the IOC only days before the Opening Ceremony. Schranz was known for having many endorsement contracts helping ski manufacturers test and design their equipment, and IOC President Avery Brundage, who hated the Winter Olympics, decided to make an example of Schranz, which raised the ire of the Austrians, who threatened to withdraw their entire ski team. But they did not. Even with Schranz present, the favorite would have been Swiss Bernhard Russi, downhill World Champion in 1970 and World Cup Champion in the downhill in 1971-72. Russi had drawn the fourth starting slot, and when he left the starthouse, the lead was held by his teammate, Andreas Sprecher. But Russi bettered Sprecher’s time by over 1½ seconds and the time held up for the gold medal. Sprecher would eventually drop to fourth behind Roland Collombin (SUI-silver) and Heini Messner (AUT-bronze). David Wallechinsky has noted in The Complete Book of the Winter Olympics, )The hypocrisy of the IOC’s decision against Schranz was shown by the fact that … Russi had allowed his photo and name to be used on matchboxes, car stickers, and newspaper advertisements as part of a large-scale pre-Olympic publicity campaign for a Swiss insurance company.) Russi later became known as a designer of downhill racing courses, and has designed the Olympic downhill courses in 1988, 1992, 1994, 1998, 2002, and 2014.
|53||61||Lotfollah Kia Shemshaki||IRI||2:16.14|
|54||57||Fayzollah Band Ali||IRI||2:18.19|
|55||59||Gorban Ali Kalhor||IRI||2:20.98|