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| Event type

Discus Throw, Men

Date 3 September 1904
StatusOlympic
LocationFrancis Field, Washington University, St. Louis
Participants6 from 2 countries
FormatFinal only.
Olympic Record 36.04 / Rudolf Bauer HUN / 14 July 1900

The 1904 AAU champion, Martin Sheridan, was a slight favorite but Ralph Rose was given a good chance, as was Greece’s Nikolaos Georgantas. After six throws, Rose and Sheridan were tied, and had a throw-off of the tie, in which each was accorded another three throws. This was won by Sheridan by 7’3 1/2).

Martin Sheridan was an Irish immigrant who was inspired to take up athletics by his brother Richard, who won the discus throw at the 1902 AAU championships. Sheridan eventually became one of the great athletes of his time, setting several world discus records, winning nine Olympic medals (five gold), and three times winning the AAU title in the all-around championship.

For over 100 years, the result of this event has always been considered to be 1) Sheridan, 2) Rose. In 2015 Swedish researcher Tomas Magnusson discovered some 1905 US newspapers discussing the fact that Sheridan may have been disqualified. In August 1904 he competed at the Metropolitan AAU and his amateur status was questioned by officials Charles Sherrill and Matthew Halpin, based on the fact that he was the trackmaster at the Pelham Bay Park Athletic Grounds. The articles state that Sheridan was disqualified from his Olympic performances and Rose would become the winner of the discus throw. However, in future Spalding annuals, and all other records of Olympic results through the 1910s, Sheridan continued to be listed as the winner of this event. In addition, later stories about Sheridan note that he was “investigated and cleared by the AAU.” The IOC presumably never took any action on this problem.

PosNrAthleteNOCDistanceDistance (Imp.)
1140Martin SheridanUSA39.28128-10½GoldOR
274Ralph RoseUSA39.28128-10½SilverOR
314Nikolaos GeorgantasGRE37.68123-7½Bronze
4148John FlanaganUSA36.14118-7
59John BillerUSA
6167Jim MitchelUSA
DNS75Charles RodmanUSA
DNS12Fred SmithUSA
DNS60Hans WulffUSA
DNS4Ivan SteckleUSA
DNS174M. DevineUSA
DNS40Charles HennemannUSA