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Cold facts and cool stories

Updated: 2022-02-24 08:30 ( China Daily )
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Chinese version of the book.

New book From Chamonix to Beijing: Centennial Winter Olympics records the ledgers and legends of all Winter Games thus far, Yang Yang reports.

Top sports events are often the birthplaces of legends, and the Winter Olympics are no exception.

During the 1964 Innsbruck Winter Olympics, Italian athlete Eugenio Monti was awarded the Pierre de Coubertin Medal for sportsmanship, the first-ever in Olympic history, for his generosity to his opponents.

Monti competed in the two-man and four-man bobsleigh events. Before the start of the two-man event, he gave a spare bolt to the British duo to help fix their sleigh. A few days later, before the four-man bobsleigh competition, he and their team's machinist helped to fix the Canadian team's sleigh. The two teams he assisted both won the gold medals, and Monti and his teams took the bronze in both competitions.

Born in 1928, Monti started his sports career as a skier. Due to serious injuries caused by an accident in 1951, he had to stop skiing and shifted his focus to bobsleigh. Monti was 28 years old when he competed for the first time at the 1956 Winter Olympics, and won silver in both the two-man and four-man bobsleigh events.

By 1964, he was 36 years old. People believed that at such an age, it was unlikely he would win an Olympic championship, so he was given the Pierre de Coubertin Medal as a "goodbye souvenir", the book From Chamonix to Beijing: Centennial Winter Olympics, published in January by People's Publishing House in both Chinese and English, explains.

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