Sailing at the 1936 Summer Olympics

Sailing/Yachting is an Olympic sport starting from the Games of the 1st Olympiad (1896 Olympics in Athens, Greece). With the exception of 1904 and the canceled 1916 Summer Olympics, sailing has always been included on the Olympic schedule. The Sailing program of 1936 consisted of a total of four sailing classes (disciplines). For each class seven races were scheduled from 29 August 1936 to 8 September 1936 at the Firth of Kiel.[1]

at the Games of the XI Olympiad
Olympische Spiele 1936 - Segelwettbewerbe in Kiel msu2017-8768.jpg
Olympische Segel Wettbewerbe 1936
(Olympic Sailing Competition 1936)
VenuesFirth of Kiel
DatesFirst race: 4 August 1936 (1936-08-04)
Last race: 12 August 1936 (1936-08-12)
Competitors166 Male and 3 Female from 26 nations
← 1932
1948 →


For the 1936 Berlin Summer Olympics a choice had to be made between the Berliner Müggel Lake district or the Kiel area. Finally the Organizing committee made the decision in favour of the big boats and picked Kiel.[2] As a result of the distance between Berlin to Kiel, a special committee for Yachting sprung to life to assist the Organizing Committee for the XIth Olympiad. Since Kiel was mainly a military port this Committee had to cooperate not only with the local authorities but also with the German Fleet Command in Kiel to ensure the success of the races.

Olympic Harbor
Burgee of the Kieler Yacht Club
General information
TypeOlympic harbor
Country  Germany
Coordinates54°20′16″N 10°09′26″E / 54.33778°N 10.15722°E / 54.33778; 10.15722Coordinates: 54°20′16″N 10°09′26″E / 54.33778°N 10.15722°E / 54.33778; 10.15722

Course areas and coursesEdit

One race area was created to the East of Schilksee and two in the harbor area more into the Firth of Kiel. Near the course areas tribunes on barges and on land were placed for spectators.[3]

1936 Olympic Course Areas
Open street map view of the current map of Firth of Kiel. Projected are the 1936 Olympic sailing courses.
To define the actual course the race committee gave the sequence in which the marks should be rounded.

e.g: Start - 1 port - 7 port - 5 port - 1 port - 5 port - Finish.

The sailing was done on the triangular type Olympic courses. The start was made in the center of a set of 8 numbered marks that were places in a circle. This made it possible to begin and finish every race sailing against the wind, regardless of the direction of the wind. During the starting procedure the sequence of the marks was communicated to the sailors. Starting upwind ensure a fair start of every race.[3] This mark system is, at least in certain German lakes, still in use in many places.

The German Navy, was besides the organization of the race management responsible, with the help of the shipping lines, for keeping the race areas free of undesirable traffic.[3]



Continents Countries Classes Boats Male Female
4 26 4 59 166 3[2]


Map of Participating Sailing Continents at the 1936 Summer Olympics
Green = Participating for the first time
Blue = Participating
Light Blue = Have previously participated
● Asia
● Europe
● North America
● South America


Map of Participating Sailing Countries at the 1936 Summer Olympics
Green = Participating for the first time
Blue = Participating
Light Blue = Have previously participated
  Argentina (ARG)   Austria (AUT)   Belgium (BEL)   Brazil (BRA)
  Canada (CAN)[4]   Chile (CHI)   Czechoslovakia (TCH)   Denmark (DEN)
  Estonia (EST)   Finland (FIN)   France (FRA)   Great Britain (GBR)
  Germany (GER)   Hungary (HUN)   Italy (ITA)   Japan (JPN)
  Netherlands (NED)   Norway (NOR)   Poland (POL)   Portugal (POR)
  Switzerland (SUI)   Sweden (SWE)   Turkey (TUR)   United States (USA)
  Uruguay (URU)   Yugoslavia (YUG)

Classes (equipment) [5]Edit

Class Type Venue Event Sailors First OG Olympics so far
O-Jolle Dinghy Kiel   Max. 1
Max. 1 substitute
1936 1
Star Keelboat Kiel   Max. 2
Max. 2 substitutes
1932 2
6 Metre Keelboat Kiel   Max. 5
Max. 5 substitutes
1908 7
8 Metre Keelboat Kiel   Max. 6
Max. 6 substitutes
1908 7
Legend:   = Mixed gender event

Race scheduleEdit

 ●  Opening ceremony  ●  Event competitions  ●  Final races  ●  Closing ceremony
Date August
Sailing (planning)[3]

Total gold medals 4

Medal summaryEdit

Source: [5]

Event Gold Silver Bronze

1936: O-Jolle

  Netherlands (NED)
Daan Kagchelland
  Germany (GER)
Werner Krogmann
  Great Britain (GBR)
Peter Scott

1936: Star

  Germany (GER)
Peter Bischoff
Hans-Joachim Weise
  Sweden (SWE)
Arvid Laurin
Uno Wallentin
  Netherlands (NED)
Bob Maas
Willem de Vries Lentsch

1936: 6 Metre

  Great Britain (GBR)
Christopher Boardman
Miles Bellville
Russell Harmer
Charles Leaf
Leonard Martin
  Norway (NOR)
Magnus Konow
Karsten Konow
Fredrik Meyer
Vaadjuv Nyqvist
Alf Tveten
  Sweden (SWE)
Sven Salén
Lennart Ekdahl
Martin Hindorff
Torsten Lord
Dagmar Salén

1936: 8 Metre

  Italy (ITA)
Giovanni Reggio
Bruno Bianchi
Luigi De Manincor
Domenico Mordini
Enrico Poggi
Luigi Poggi
  Norway (NOR)
Olaf Ditlev-Simonsen
John Ditlev-Simonsen
Hans Struksnæs
Lauritz Schmidt
Jacob Thams
Nordahl Wallem
  Germany (GER)
Hans Howaldt
Fritz Bischoff
Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach
Eduard Mohr
Felix Scheder-Bieschin
Otto Wachs

Medal tableEdit

1  Germany (GER)1113
2  Great Britain (GBR)1012
  Netherlands (NED)1012
4  Italy (ITA)1001
5  Norway (NOR)0202
6  Sweden (SWE)0112
Totals (6 nations)44412


  • A floating transmission station was used for reporting the race events to shore.[2]
  • New media was also used in the protest room. On the footage made from a Zeppelin, for the film Olympia of Leni Riefenstahl, an incident was observed by the jury between Sweden and Finland in race No. VI of the 8 Metre. As result both teams were disqualified.[3]

Other informationEdit


  • This Summer Olympics established sailing as a full mature Olympic sport after a long struggle to get a unified International standard set of rules.
  • Each Olympic Gold medalist was also given a plant during the prize giving ceremony.
  • Spain withdrew from sailing before the opening ceremony, as part of its boycott of the 1936 Summer Olympics.
  • The Swiss 6 Metre was eliminated for all races since the helmsmen turned out not to be an amateur.
  • Many protests in the Metre classes were filed. Speculations were made about whether this was due to the scoring system. One of the reasons was probably the close racing.
  • The Olympic flame was burning on a Hanseatic galleon in the harbor of Kiel.[2]
  • In total a number of 257 participants were entered. 169 of them competed, the others were reserves or team managers and so on.[2]


During the sailing regattas at the 1936 Summer Olympics among others the following persons were competing in the various classes:

Further readingEdit

  • "Digital Library Collection (Official Olympic Reports 1896 - 2008)". Digital Library Collection at la84foundation. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  • "Berlin 1936". International Olympic Committee.


  1. ^ "Sailing at the 1936 Summer Olympics". Olympedia. Retrieved 28 May 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d e Richter, Dr. Friedrich, ed. (1936). The XITH Olympic Games Berlin, 1936: Officiel Report, Volume I (PDF). Berlin: the Organisationskomitee für die XI. Olympiade Berlin 1936 e.V. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Richter, Dr. Friedrich, ed. (1936). The XITH Olympic Games Berlin, 1936: Officiel Report, Volume II (PDF). Berlin: the Organisationskomitee für die XI. Olympiade Berlin 1936 e.V. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  4. ^ Hugh Drake & Paul Henderson (2009). Canada's Olympic Sailing Legacy, Paris 1924 – Beijing 2008. Toronto: CYA.
  5. ^ a b Kubatko, Justin. "Sailing at the 1936 Berlin Summer Games". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 17 May 2015.