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Winter Olympics History

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					The first official Winter Olympics were held in 1924 in Chamonix, France.
Athletes arrived from 16 countries with over 200 participants taking part
in a small selection of events. In 1928 the games were held in St Moritz
but it was not until 1932 that the games first took place outside of
Europe when they were awarded to Lake Place in the United States of
America. The Lake Placid games were not too successful due to the lack of
snow and the Great Depression that was taking place.In 1936 the games
went back to Europe when Germany hosted them, and these marked the last
Winter Olympics for 12 years due to the Second World War.In 1948 St
Moritz was awarded the Winter Olympics for the second time by the IOC
mainly due to the fact that Switzerland had been mainly untouched by the
devastation of the war. All in all 28 countries competed in the games
nearly double the amount from the first games held in 1924.Oslo in Norway
hosted the 1952 games and the 1956 games were awarded to Italy which was
the first Winter Olympics to be televised. In 1960 America again was the
host in Squaw Valley.In 1964 the games again came back to Europe in the
Austrian town of Innsbruck and stayed in Europe in 1968 when Grenoble in
France was chosen to host. The 1968 event was the first to be televised
in colour.In 1972 Sapporo in Japan hosted the games, the first time they
were held outside of Europe or America. 35 Nations took part in the event
with China and the Philippines taking part for the first ever time.Denver
in America was originally awarded the 1976 games but the people of
Colorado expressed their opposition to the event and in a state
referendum opted against hosting them. Innsbruck in Austria stepped in
and took over with much of the infrastructure still in place from 1964.In
1980 the games were back in America with Lack Placid getting the event
for the first time since 1932. 36 nations took part in the tournament
with the Soviet Union leading the medal table with 10 gold medals in
total. 1984 saw the games in Europe again in Yugoslavia, a record 49
countries took part with Egypt, Monaco, Puerto Rico, Senegal and Virgin
Islands taking part for the first time, East Germany headed the medal
table with 9 Gold medals.In 1988 Calgary in Canada took over hosting
rights, the games were highly successful with 57 nations taking part in
the events, the Soviet Union regained the top spot in the medals table
with East Germany close behind.The 1992 games held in Savoie in France
were the last ones to be held at the same year as the Summer Olympics. 64
Nations took part in the games, with the recently unified Germany taking
part as one nation for the first time since 1964, with the German team
running out winners of the medal table with 10 Gold Medals.The 1994 games
were held in Lillehammer, Norway and gained notoriety over the Tonya
Harding and Nancy Kerrigan incident, whereby Hardings husband
deliberately injured Kerrigan to try and keep her from the games. 67
nations took part with Russia leading the medals table with 11 Gold
medals.In 1998 Japan hosted the games for the second time with over 2000
participants taking part from 72 countries.The 19th Winter Olympics and
the first of the 21st Century were hosted by Salt Lake City in the USA in
2002, 78 nations took part in the games with Norway leading the table
with 13 Gold Medals.The last Winter Olympics to be held were hosted by
Turin in Italy, with over 80 Nations taking part. In 2010 the games will
be held in Vancouver in Canada with a record number of countries
predicted to enter.

				
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