Equestrian at the 1956 Summer Olympics

The equestrian events at the 1956 Summer Olympics were held in Stockholm due to the Australian quarantine regulations and included dressage, eventing, and show jumping. All three disciplines had both individual and team competitions. The competitions were held from 11 to 17 June 1956 at Stockholm Olympic Stadium. There were 159 entries from 29 countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Federal Republic of Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Soviet Union, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, USA and Venezuela. This would be the first appearance for Australia, Cambodia and Venezuela in equestrian events.

at the Games of the XVI Olympiad
VenueStockholm Olympic Stadium
Dates11–17 June
No. of events6
Competitors159 from 29 nations
← 1952
1960 →

Although Melbourne was awarded the 1956 Olympic Games, Australia had a strict six-month pre-shipment quarantine on horses. A meeting in 1953 by Australian federal authorities ruled that they would not change the quarantine laws for the Olympic horses. Therefore, the equestrian competition would not be able to be held in Australia. In 1954, the IOC selected Stockholm, Sweden as the alternate venue for the equestrian events. Therefore, the equestrian events were not only separated by city or country, but also continent, with the equestrian event being held in June (summer in the Northern Hemisphere) and the other sports held in November (late spring in the Southern Hemisphere).


Show jumpingEdit

A total of 66 riders from 24 countries contested the difficult Greger Lewnhaupt-designed course, which no one was able to ride clear in the first round. Considered the first modern course in Olympic history, it was 775 meters in length, to be ridden at 400m/min, with 14 obstacles and 17 jumping efforts. The gold medal was awarded to Hans Günter Winkler of the Federal Republic of Germany, on his great mare Halla. He finished the first round with 4 faults, after landing heavily after an early takeoff by his mount, resulting in a pulled groin muscle. Knowing if he withdrew from the final round would result in his country's elimination, Winkler rode in the second round, and managed to complete it faultless. Winkler would go on to be one of the most medal-winning riders in Olympic history, with 7 medals to his name.


36 riders, 11 of which were women, from 17 nations competed in dressage. Of those 11 women, 2 won an individual medal (including last year's silver medalist Lis Hartel) and an additional one placed in the top 10. There was controversy in the judging, since judges tended to have their own opinions of what was considered correct training and riding, and at the time there was no common ideal for dressage. The German and Swedish judges favored their own countrymen, and ended up being suspended by the FEI. Following this controversy, the IOC threatened to remove dressage from the Olympics. The FEI and IOC came to a compromise, resulting in only individual competitors being allowed at the 1960 Games, with up to 2 riders per country.


Medal summaryEdit

Event Gold Silver Bronze
Individual dressage
  Henri Saint Cyr
and Juli (SWE)
  Lis Hartel
and Jubilee (DEN)
  Liselott Linsenhoff
and Adular (EUA)
Team dressage
  Sweden (SWE)
Henri Saint Cyr
and Juli
Gehnäll Persson
and Knaust
Gustaf Adolf Boltenstern Jr.
and Krest
  United Team of Germany (EUA)
Liselott Linsenhoff
and Adular
Hannelore Weygand
and Perkunos
Anneliese Küppers
and Afrika
  Switzerland (SUI)
Gottfried Trachsel
and Kursus
Henri Chammartin
and Wöhler
Gustav Fischer
and Vasello
Individual eventing
  Petrus Kastenman
and Iluster (SWE)
  August Lütke-Westhues
and Trux von Kamax (EUA)
  Francis Weldon
and Kilbarry (GBR)
Team eventing
  Great Britain (GBR)
Francis Weldon
and Kilbarry
Arthur Rook
and Wild Venture
Bertie Hill
and Countryman III
  United Team of Germany (EUA)
August Lütke-Westhues
and Trux von Kamax
Otto Rothe
and Sissi
Klaus Wagner
and Prinzeß
  Canada (CAN)
John Rumble
and Cilroy
Jim Elder
and Colleen
Brian Herbinson
and Tara
Individual jumping
  Hans Günter Winkler
and Halla (EUA)
  Raimondo D'Inzeo
and Merano (ITA)
  Piero D'Inzeo
and Uruguay (ITA)
Team jumping
  United Team of Germany (EUA)
Hans Günter Winkler
and Halla
Fritz Thiedemann
and Meteor
Alfons Lütke-Westhues
and Ala
  Italy (ITA)
Raimondo D'Inzeo
and Merano
Piero D'Inzeo
and Uruguay
Salvatore Oppes
and Pagoro
  Great Britain (GBR)
Wilfred White
and Nizefela
Pat Smythe
and Flanagan
Peter Robeson
and Scorchin

Participating nationsEdit

A total of 29 nations competed in Stockholm.

Five nations competed in the equestrian events in Stockholm, but did not attend the Games in Melbourne:

Egypt did not compete in Melbourne due to the Suez Crisis, whilst Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland all boycotted the Australian event in protest at the Soviet invasion of Hungary.[1]

Medal tableEdit

  *   Host nation (Sweden)

1  Sweden (SWE)*3003
2  United Team of Germany (EUA)2316
3  Great Britain (GBR)1023
4  Italy (ITA)0213
5  Denmark (DEN)0101
6  Canada (CAN)0011
  Switzerland (SUI)0011
Totals (7 nations)66618


  *   Host nation (Sweden)


External linksEdit