Sixten Jernberg

Edy Sixten Jernberg (6 February 1929 – 14 July 2012) was a Swedish cross-country skier and one of the most successful cross-country skiers of all time.[1][2] Between 1952 and 1964 he took part in 363 ski races, finishing within the podium in 263 and winning 134 of them; during this period he won four world titles and nine Olympic medals. In 12 starts over three consecutive Winter Games he never finished worse than fifth place, and between 1955 and 1960, he won 86 out of 161 competitions.[3][4]

Sixten Jernberg
Sixten Jernberg.jpg
Jernberg in 1958
Country Sweden
Full nameEdy Sixten Jernberg
Born(1929-02-06)6 February 1929
Lima, Sweden
Died14 July 2012(2012-07-14) (aged 83)
Mora, Sweden
Height177 cm (5 ft 10 in)
Ski clubLima IF

Jernberg was a blacksmith and a lumberjack before beginning his career as a cross-country skier.[3] He specialized in the longer distances, with four of his eight gold medals coming over 50 km, one over 30 km and three in the 4 × 10 km relay. He also won Vasaloppet twice, 1955 and 1960.[5] He won the 15 km at the Holmenkollen ski festival in 1954.

At one competition, Jernberg had a fever and coughed up blood, but still finished the 50 km event.[6] Gunde Svan said: "It was almost like [Sixten] didn't like his own body and tried to punish it in different ways."[7]

For his cross-country skiing successes, Jernberg was awarded the Holmenkollen medal in 1960 (shared with Helmut Recknagel, Sverre Stensheim and Tormod Knutsen). He was also awarded the Svenska Dagbladet Gold Medal in 1956 (shared with pentathlete Lars Hall).[4][5]

Jernberg retired after the Olympic Winter Games of 1964. In 1965, the International Olympic Committee awarded Jernberg the Mohammed Taher Trophy for his contributions to Nordic skiing.[3] He died of stroke at the age of 83. He was survived by son Edy.[8] His nephew Ingemar became an Olympic pole vaulter.[3]

Cross-country skiing resultsEdit

All results are sourced from the International Ski Federation (FIS).[9]

Olympic GamesEdit

  • 9 medals – (4 gold, 3 silver, 2 bronze)
 Year   Age   15 km  30 km  50 km  4 × 10 km 
1956 27 Silver Silver Gold Bronze
1960 31 Silver Gold 5 4
1964 35 Bronze 5 Gold Gold

World ChampionshipsEdit

  • 6 medals – (4 gold, 2 bronze)
 Year   Age   15 km  30 km  50 km  4 × 10 km 
1954 25 4 Bronze
1958 29 4 Bronze Gold Gold
1962 33 Gold Gold

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Sixten Jernberg. Encyclopædia Britannica
  2. ^ "Champion skier Sixten Jernberg dies". Radio Sweden. 14 July 2012. Retrieved 22 February 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d "Sixten Jernberg". Archived from the original on 17 April 2020.
  4. ^ a b Sixten Jernberg. Swedish Olympic Committee
  5. ^ a b "Sixten Jernberg, Swedish XC Star, Dead At 83". SkiRacing. Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  6. ^ ”Feber och hostade blod, jag körde fem mil ändå” | Sixten Jernberg om uppväxten, skidåkningen och sin starka vilja. (22 November 2010). Retrieved on 2016-01-26.
  7. ^ Från Sixten till Kalla (From Sixten to Kalla), a documentary film about Swedish ski history during the last 100 years by Jens Lind, Sveriges Television, 2008.
  8. ^ Sixten Jernberg, Cross-Country Skiing Champion, Dies at 83. AP via New York Times (16 July 2012)
  9. ^ "JERNBERG Sixten". FIS-Ski. International Ski Federation. Retrieved 13 January 2020.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Athlete with the most medals at Winter Olympics
25 February 1988 – 17 February 1992
With: Raisa Smetanina
Succeeded by
  Raisa Smetanina
Preceded by
Himself with   Clas Thunberg
and   Ivar Ballangrud
Athlete with the most medals at Winter Olympics
5 February 1964 – 25 February 1988
Succeeded by
Himself with   Raisa Smetanina
Preceded by
  Clas Thunberg
and   Ivar Ballangrud
Athlete with the most medals at Winter Olympics
2 February 1964 – 5 February 1964
With: Clas Thunberg
Ivar Ballangrud
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Sigvard Ericsson
Svenska Dagbladet Gold Medal
with Lars Hall

Succeeded by
Dan Waern