digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















XIII Olympic Winter Games
1980 Winter Olympics logo.svg
The emblem is a line that forms the Adirondacks,
which becomes a column on the left,
paying tribute the ancient Olympic games.
The top of the column is serrated
to hold the Olympic rings. This represents
a double cauldron, acknowledging that
the Olympics were also held in Lake Placid in 1932.
Host city Lake Placid, New York, United States
Nations participating 37
Athletes participating 1072
(840 men, 232 women)
Events 38 in 6 sports (10 disciplines)
Opening ceremony February 14
Closing ceremony February 23
Officially opened by Vice President Walter Mondale
Athlete's Oath Eric Heiden
Judge's Oath Terry McDermott
Olympic Torch Charles Morgan Kerr
Stadium Lake Placid Equestrian Stadium

The 1980 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XIII Olympic Winter Games (French: Les XIIIes Jeux olympiques d'hiver), was a multi-sport event which was celebrated from February 13, through February 24, 1980 in Lake Placid, New York, United States of America. This was the second time the Upstate New York village hosted the Games, after 1932. The only other candidate city to bid for the Games was Vancouver-Garibaldi, British Columbia, Canada; which withdrew before the final vote.

The mascots of the Games were "Roni" and "Ronny", two raccoons. The mask-like rings on a raccoon's face recall the goggles and hats worn by many athletes in winter sports.

The sports were played at the Olympic Center (later renamed Herb Brooks Arena), Whiteface Mountain, Mt. Van Hoevenberg Olympic Bobsled Run, the Olympic Ski Jumps, the Cascade Cross Country Ski Center, and the Lake Placid High School Speed Skating Oval.

Host selection[edit]

The selection process for the 1980 Winter Olympics consisted of one bid, from Lake Placid, United States. It was selected at the 75th IOC Session in Vienna on October 13, 1974.[1]


Notable highlights included:

  • The United States men's ice hockey team, composed mostly of collegiate players and not predicted to advance beyond group play, won the gold medal, defeating the heavily favored Soviet team and Finland in the medal round. The United States team's 4–3 win over the Soviet team, which came into the 1980 Games having won 4 consecutive Olympic gold medals, became known as the "Miracle on Ice" in the US press. The win captured the hearts of Americans during a time of Cold War tensions, even though it was the win against Finland that captured the gold medal.
  • Eric Heiden of the United States captured all 5 awarded gold medals in speedskating, setting 4 Olympic records and 1 world record (10,000m) in the process and delivering 83% of the American gold medals. Heiden is still the only athlete to win 5 gold medals at one Winter Games.
  • Sweden's Ingemar Stenmark won both the giant slalom and the slalom.
  • Hanni Wenzel won the women's giant slalom and slalom, making Liechtenstein the smallest country to produce an Olympic champion.
  • Ulrich Wehling of East Germany and Irina Rodnina of the USSR won their respective events for the third time.
  • Aleksandr Tikhonov of the USSR earned his fourth straight gold medal.
  • Nikolay Zimyatov of the USSR earned three gold medals in cross-country skiing.
  • Robin Cousins won gold for Great Britain in the men's singles figure skating.
  • East Germany won the most medals overall (23) but had fewer golds (9) than the USSR (10).
  • In possibly the most dramatic duel of the games, Sweden's Thomas Wassberg edged Finland's Juha Mieto in the 15 km cross-country skiing by 0.01 seconds, the closest margin of victory ever in Olympic cross-country skiing. This led the International Ski Federation (ISF) to time all events to the nearest 1/10 second in the future.[citation needed]
  • Although they did not get any medals, the People's Republic of China entered the Olympics Games for the first time after the IOC agreed to designate the Republic of China "Chinese Taipei".
  • Lake Placid 1980 marked the first use of artificial snow in Olympic competition.
  • Lake Placid 1980 was the last Olympics to be opened by the Vice President of the United States, as 1980 was a Presidential election year.


The Olympic cauldron

There were 38 events contested in 6 sports (10 disciplines). See the medal winners, ordered by sport:


Critics decried poorly planned transportation which left spectators waiting for hours in freezing weather, and some athletes complained about lousy accommodations at the Olympic village, where the dorms would later be turned into a prison, FCI Ray Brook. The supply and demand for event tickets never merged, as would-be buyers were unable to buy unsold tickets because only those who already had a ticket could enter ticket-sales areas at venues. Unsold tickets are still being sold as souvenirs at several local tourist shops, including the Olympic Regional Development Association's gift shop at the Olympic Arena. The former Will Rogers Memorial Hospital was briefly used as press headquarters.[2]

Medal count[edit]

Two gold and bronze Olympic medals from XIII Olympic Winter Games

(Host nation highlighted)

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 Soviet Union 10 6 6 22
2  East Germany (GDR) 9 7 7 23
3 United States 6 4 2 12
4 Austria 3 2 2 7
5 Sweden 3 0 1 4
6 Liechtenstein 2 2 0 4
7 Finland 1 5 3 9
8 Norway 1 3 6 10
9 Netherlands 1 2 1 4
10 Switzerland 1 1 3 5

Participating nations[edit]

37 NOCs participated. United States President Jimmy Carter had already called for the boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, leading to a great deal of tension at the Games. Nevertheless, the USSR and its allies participated (though the USSR didn't participate in the 1984 Summer Olympics, held in Los Angeles).

Cyprus made their Olympic debut at the 1980 Winter Olympics. The People's Republic of China and Costa Rica both made their Winter Olympic debut. The Republic of China had boycotted the Games over the IOC's recognition of the PRC as "China", and its request for the Republic of China to compete as "Chinese Taipei".[3]

Theme song[edit]

The official theme song for the 1980 Winter Olympics was "Give It All You Got" by the American flugelhorn player Chuck Mangione, who performed the song (along with the song "Pina Colada") live at the Closing Ceremonies, with the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra (Canada).[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Past Olympic host city election results". GamesBids. Archived from the original on March 17, 2011. Retrieved March 17, 2011. 
  2. ^ Raymond W. Smith (July 1983). "National Register of Historic Places Registration: Will Rogers Memorial Hospital". New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Retrieved July 10, 2010. 
  3. ^ Kiat.net
  4. ^ Hyatt, Wesley (1999). The Billboard Book of No.1 Adult Contemporary Hits (Billboard Publications)


External links[edit]

Preceded by
Winter Olympics
Lake Placid

XIII Olympic Winter Games (1980)
Succeeded by

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1980_Winter_Olympics — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
155456 videos foundNext > 

30th Anniversary Celebration of the Lake Placid 1980 Winter Olympics

This piece first aired on Mountain Lake Journal Extra on February 18, 2010. Lake Placid held a 30th anniversary celebration of the 1980 Winter Olympics by li...

Czechoslovakia-USA, 14-february 1980, Winter Olympics 1980, Lake Placid

1:0 2:23 Pouzar 1:1 4:39 Eruzione 1:2 5:45 Pavelich 2:2 12:07 M.Stastny 2:3 24:33 Shreider 2:4 35:28 Johnston 2:5 42:59 Verchota 2:6 43:59 Schreider 3:6 45:3...

Prepping Lake Placid for the 1980 Olympics - AT&T Archives

See more from the AT&T Archives at http://techchannel.att.com/archives The first Olympics to be transmitted via television globally were the 1964 Innsbruck G...

USA's 'Miracle On Ice' Performance - Lake Placid 1980 Winter Olympics

Team USA defeats the mighty USSR Ice Hockey team in a game that would be forever know as the 'miracle on ice'. The underdog triumph came at the 1980 Lake Pla...

Robert Riggs "Downhill Dollars" Investigation of 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid 10-part series

Countdown to the 1980 Winter Olympics - AT&T Archives

See more from the AT&T Archives at http://techchannel.att.com/archives Before the 1980 Games, the previous Olympics to take place in Lake Placid, New York, h...

Men's Ice Hockey - Lake Placid 1980 Winter Olympic Games

The men take to the ice in a timeless contest for hockey gold at the Lake Placid 1980 Winter Olympic Games. Athletes featured in this video : USA Team, Unite...

1980 Winter Olympics USA vs. Finland

2/24/80 Rob McClanahan scores to give USA a 3-2 lead in their Medal Round game against Finland. The Americans needed a win to guarantee gold, a tie would mea...

1980 Winter Olympics Women's Figure Skating (short and long programs) plus medal ceremony.mpg

1980 Winter Olympics Women's Figure Skating (short and long programs) Фигурное катание Олимпиада スケート eiskunstlauf 渡部 絵美 patinage artistique CF SP FS Points ...

Linda Fratianne - 1980 Winter Olympics Short Program

Linda Fratianne had some catching up to do after placing 3rd in the compulsory figures at the 1980 Olympic Winter Games in Lake Placid. This Short Program wo...

155456 videos foundNext > 

53 news items

Daily Mail

Daily Mail
Thu, 11 Sep 2014 10:50:07 -0700

Bob Suter, one of the heroes of the USA's 'Miracle on Ice' hockey team that won gold in the 1980 Winter Olympics, has died of a massive heart attack aged 57. The feisty defenseman, who played a key part in Herb Brooks' famous side, was at the ice rink ...
Pittsburgh Post Gazette (blog)
Sun, 21 Sep 2014 23:17:20 -0700

Following the 1980 Winter Olympics, Johnson appeared in 17 games for the Penguins in 1979-80 and scored eight points. In the postseason, he saw action in five games and netted four points. His first full season in the NHL was 1980-81. He played in 73 ...
Pine Island Eagle
Tue, 16 Sep 2014 23:00:00 -0700

22, during the 1980 Winter Olympics, in Lake Placid New York that the United States national team (Team USA) was matched to play the Soviet Union National Team. The Soviet team had won the gold medal in six of the seven previous Olympic games.
Wed, 17 Sep 2014 12:41:15 -0700

Meet caricature artist Tom Glover, whose whimisical works are featured in a special Portside Gallery show through September 28. From Monte Carlo to Hong Kong to Argentina to Montreal, Glover has traveled around the world doing what he loves best: ...
Buffalo News
Sat, 13 Sep 2014 18:30:00 -0700

He covered the 1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta and the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, where he watched Team USA upset the Soviet Union in hockey. He covered both the Toronto World Series wins, in 1992 and 1993. Kilgore enjoyed no aspect of ...
Raw Charge
Wed, 10 Sep 2014 05:00:00 -0700

In this Wednesday edition of Quick Strikes, mourning the loss of legendary USA Hockey player Bob Suter, commentary about the new head of the Department of Player Safety, and a new venture for Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula.
Beloit Daily News
Sat, 30 Aug 2014 08:06:37 -0700

The 1980 Winter Olympics USA versus USSR hockey match. The ongoing Jeni versus her brother Tim in the battle for bragging rights over who is the favorite child. Oh, you haven't heard of that last one? Well, believe me, it is truly epic. Just ask my mom ...
Island Reporter
Fri, 12 Sep 2014 01:48:45 -0700

22, during the 1980 Winter Olympics, in Lake Placid, N.Y., that the United States national team (Team USA) was matched to play the Soviet Union national team. The Soviet team had won the gold medal in six of the seven previous Olympic games.

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!