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Military Ski Patrol, Men

Date 8 February 1948
StatusOlympic (non-medal)
LocationSkistadion, St. Moritz
Participants32 from 8 countries
Format27 km.

At the 1948 Winter Olympics, in St. Moritz, Switzerland, the last military patrol competition was held as a demonstration sport. This was in part to the aftermath of World War II, which decimated Europe. This sport would be superseded by the biathlon competition which debuted at the 1960 Winter Olympics. The cross-country ski run was not prepared, and was made by the leading Swiss team. The Czechoslovak participant Karel Dvořák described the weather of the day as extremely mild with temperatures of about 0° C at the starting point at the upper cableway station (2,486 m) on top of the Corviglia in the morning. The participants wore military equipment, 10 kg of baggage on the back and a military rifle. Only the officers, the patrol leaders, had pistols and did not compete in shooting. At the shooting range they had to shoot on three rubber balloons at a distance of 150 m. Every hit gave a bonus of 1 minute for the team. Switzerland won fairly easily, by three minutes over Finland. Switzerland had by far the best ski time, about 7 minutes ahead of the Finns, but Finland received 9 shooting bonus minutes, while the Swiss had only 5. Sweden also outskiied the Finns, but the Finnish dominance with the rifle moved the Swedes back to third place.

PosCompetitor(s)NOCTimeSTBSki Time
1SwitzerlandSUI2-34:255:002-39:25
Robert ZurbriggenArnold AndenmattenVital VouardouxHeinrich Zurbriggen
2FinlandFIN2-37:239:002-46:23
Eero NaapuriVilho YlönenMikko MeriläinenTauno Honkanen
3SwedenSWE2-31:034:002-45:03
Edor HjukströmHolger BorghKarl Gustav LjungquistFride Larsson
4ItalyITA2-50:032:002-52:03
Costanzo PiccoAristide CompagnoniGiacinto De CassanAntenore Cuel
5FranceFRA2-54:357:003-01:35
Émile PaganonMarc Benoît-LizonUlysse BozonnetGilbert Morand
6CzechoslovakiaTCH3-10:266:003-16:26
Vojtech PavelicaKarel DvořákJaroslav ŠírOtto Skrbek
7RomaniaROU3-16:248:003-24:24
Ștefan IonescuConstantin VlădeaCornel Nicolae CrăciunIon Kasky
8United StatesUSA4-35:583:004-38:58
Donald WeihsStanley WalkerHenry DunlapLorentz Eide