US ski jumper Anders Haugen finished 4th at the 1924 Olympics, when 50 years later a Norwegian historian discovered a scoring error was made and Haugen should have gotten the bronze medal, which was handed to him in Norway in 1974 by the daughter of the original bronze medal winner.
Czechoslovak runner Emil Zátopek decided to compete in the marathon in the 1952 Olympics, despite never having run that distance in his life. Zátopek asked fellow runner Jim Peters, who he was racing alongside, if the pace was fast enough. When Peters said “no”, Zátopek sped up and won the race.
It took Quebec until 2006 to pay off its debt from hosting the 1976 Summer Olympics.
The first Olympic disqualification for drug use was against a Swedish pentathlete who drank two beers before his shooting event to calm his nerves.
At the 2000 Summer Olympics, Equatorial Guinean Swimmer, Eric Moussambani, swam the slowest Olympic time of all time in the 100 M freestyle at, finishing at 1:52:72.
Some Koreans are trying to rename their country back to “Corea”. They believe that Japan changed the spelling to “Korea” so Japanese athletes would march first at the 1908 Olympics.
There is an RC car that returns Javelins to the Olympic athletes. Here’s the video from London 2012.
Up until the 70s and 80s every competitor in the Olympics had to be an amateur, meaning they could not receive payment. Today, the only Olympic sports with no professional athletes are boxing and wrestling.
Olympic gold medals are only 1% gold and 92.5% silver. They would be worth over $25k if they were pure gold but instead the medal value is only approximately $600.
‘Art’ used to be an Olympic sport. Artists were award gold, silver and bronze medals for architecture, painting, sculpture, music and literature across multiple Summer Olympics in the early 20th Century. The ‘arts’ were dropped from the Games because they drew too many professional artists.