Basque pelota


Discipline of Basque pelota
Participants 2
NOCs 1
Competitions held 1 (Venues)
Distinct events 14
IF Federación Internacional de Pelota Vasca


Pelota is a generic name for various hand-and-ball or racquet-and-ball games derived from the ancient French racquet sport of jeu de paume. The best-known version of the sport is probably chistera (also xistera or cesta punta), which uses baskets to handle the ball. In the United States, it is better known as the betting sport of jai alai. Basque pelota, predominantly played in the Basque regions and contiguous provinces of France and Spain, has thrice been an Olympic demonstration sport in 1924, 1968, and 1992. In addition, at the unusual Olympic Games of 1900, a version of pelota can be considered to have been an Olympic sport.

It is the only sport where Olympic medals have been awarded despite the sport having never taken place at the Olympic Games. It was to be played at the 1900 Olympics but only one Spanish pair remained after a French pair withdrew shortly before the Olympic match was scheduled.

All-time medal table

Olympic Games

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Total
Spain ESP 1 0 0 1

Most successful competitors

Olympic Games

Athlete Nat Gold Silver Bronze Total
Francisco Villota ESP 1 0 0 1
José de Amézola ESP 1 0 0 1

Event types

Name Gender Still contested? Times held?
Two-Man Teams With Cesta Men 1
Two-Man Teams With Cesta, Professional Men 1
Mano, Triples Men 1
Mano, Doubles Men 3
Mano, Singles Men 1
Pala Corta, Doubles Men 1
Paleta Cuero, Doubles Men 3
Paleta Goma, Doubles Men 2
Frontenis, Doubles Men 2
Cesta Punta, Doubles Men 2
Blé, Triples Men 1
Pala, Doubles Men 1
Cesta Punta, Triples Men 1
Frontenis, Doubles Women 1