| Event type

5,000 metres, Men

Date13 February 1928 — 13:00
LocationOlympia-Eisstadion Badrutts Park, St. Moritz
Participants33 from 14 countries
Olympic Record 8:39.0 / Clas Thunberg FIN / 26 January 1924
StarterHermann KleebergGER
RefereeHenning OlsenNOR

The 5000 m was heavily influenced by the weather. As the race progressed, wind and snow grew stronger, and ice conditions deteriorated. This placed the skaters who had been drawn late in the competition at a disadvantage. The first favorite to hit the ice was Ivar Ballangrud. The 24-year-old Norwegian was the 1926 World Champion, and had won the 5 km race at the World Championships in Davos just a week ago. He took great advantage of the weather conditions in his race, skating a steady race and lapping his Lithuanian opponent. His time of 8:50.5 was a far cry from the times skated in Davos, where Ballangrud had approached the World Record (which stood at 8:26.5).

Bernt Evensen took off faster than Ballangrud, and had the fastest time until two-thirds of the race, when he faded and finished ten seconds behind his countryman. His time was approached by the best American distance skater, Irving Jaffee of New York. He gained on Evensen every lap, but ended up 0.2 seconds short. 38-year-old Finnish veteran Julius Skutnabb had a similar build up, but won two seconds on the Norwegian in the final lap, moving into silver medal position.

By then, weather conditions had become really tough. Norwegian Armand Carlsen came within half a second of the bronze medal, and would likely have medalled had it not been for the snow. Other favorites finished further back, including two 5000 m medalists from the recent World Championships, Michael Staksrud (NOR) and Clas Thunberg (FIN). Thunberg’s luck was especially bad, considering that he had originally been drawn in the third race. Because his pairmate, the Canadian Gorman, didn’t show up, he was moved to the end of the competition to race Arthur Vollstedt.

14Ivar BallangrudNOR8:50.5Gold
210Julius SkutnabbFIN8:59.1Silver
36Bernt EvensenNOR9:01.1Bronze
49Irving JaffeeUSA9:01.3
514Armand CarlsenNOR9:01.5
611Valentine BialasUSA9:06.3
715Michael StaksrudNOR9:07.3
85Otto PolacsekAUT9:08.9
93Gustaf AnderssonSWE9:09.7
102Ossi BlomqvistFIN9:09.9
1112Siem HeidenNED9:10.0
1216Clas ThunbergFIN9:11.8
1312Bertel BackmanFIN9:14.0
141Eddie MurphyUSA9:19.5
1510Alberts RumbaLAT9:19.7
1615Fritz JungblutGER9:26.7
1713John O'Neil FarrellUSA9:29.2
183Léon QuagliaFRA9:33.3
198Wim KosNED9:34.2
208Zoltán EötvösHUN9:34.41
215Aleksander MittEST9:35.2
227Ross RobinsonCAN9:38.9
232Cyril HornGBR9:45.0
249Christfried BurmeisterEST9:46.2
254Kęstutis BulotaLTU9:49.8
2611Rudolf RiedlAUT9:53.5
271Fritz MoserAUT9:57.8
2816Arthur VollstedtGER9:58.5
2917Willy LoganCAN10:10.3
3013Charles ThaonFRA10:18.8
317Len StewartGBR10:40.0
326Fred DixGBR10:55.6
DNF14Erhard MaykeGER
DNSCharlie GormanCAN