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1968 Mexico City
Olympic Stadium

Estadio Olimpico Universitario

1968 Mexico City Olympic Stadium

  Venue Resources  
Address AV. Insurgentes Sur S/N, Col. Ciudad Universitaria CP: 43000, Coyoacçn, Distrito Federal
Mexico City, Mexico
Weather
Newspaper
Satellite View
  Metal Count  
Country Gold Silver Bronze Total
USA
USSR
Hungary
Japan
East Germany
West Germany
Australia
France
Poland
Czechoslovakia
Romania
45
29
10
11
9
5
5
7
5
7
4
28
32
10
7
9
10
7
3
2
2
6
34
30
12
7
7
10
5
5
11
4
5
107
91
32
25
25
25
17
15
18
13
15
Hotels, Dining & Deals in Mexico City, Mexico

  The Facility  
Date Built November 20, 1952
Ownership
(Management)
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico
(UNAM)
Surface Grass
Cost of Construction Unknown
Stadium Architect Augusto Perez Palacios, Jorge Bravo & Raul Salinas
Olympic Capacity 63,186
Luxury Suites None
Club Seats None
  Other Facts  
Current Tenants Club Universidad Nacional
Pumas Dorados de la UNAM
Former Tenants 1968 Summer Olympics
Population Base 19,000,000
On Site Parking Unknown
Nearest Airport Mexico City International Airport (MEX)

1968 Mexico City Olympic Stadium

The Games of the Nineteenth Olympiad were the highest and most controversial ever held.

Staged at 7,349 feet above sea level where the thin air was a major concern to many competing countries, the Mexico City Olympics were another chapter in a year buffeted by the Vietnam War, the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, the Democratic Convention in Chicago, and the Russian invasion of Czechoslovakia.

Ten days before the Olympics were scheduled to open on October 12, 1968, over 30 Mexico City university students were killed by army troops when a campus protest turned into a riot. Still, the Games began on time and were free of discord until black Americans Tommie Smith and John Carlos, who finished 1-3 in the 200-meter run, bowed their heads and gave the Black Power salute during the national athem as a protest against racism in the U.S.

They were immediately thrown off the team by the USOC and they were banned from ever participating again. However, they got to keep their medals, and Tommie Smith set a World Record.

The thin air helped shatter records in every men's and women's race up to 1,500 meters and played a role in U.S. long jumper Bob Beamon's incredible gold medal leap of 29-feet, 2 1/2 inches - beating the existing world mark by nearly two feet.

Other outstanding American performances included Al Oerter's record fourth consecutive discus title, Debbie Meyer's three individual swimming gold medals, the innovative Dick Fosbury winning the high jump with his backwards "flop", and Wyomia Tyus becoming the first woman to win back-to-back golds in the 100 meters.

Source: 1996 Information Please Sports Almanac

History of the╩Olympics
1968 - Mexico City,╩Mexico
By Jennifer Rosenberg, About.com

Only ten days before the 1968 Olympic Games were to open, the Mexican army surrounded a group of students who were protesting against the Mexican government at the Plaza of Three Cultures and opened fire into the crowd. It is estimated that 267 were killed and over 1,000 were wounded. During the Olympic Games, political statements were also made. Tommie Smith and John Carlos (both from the U.S.) won the gold and bronze medals, respectively, in the 200-meter race. When they stood (barefoot) upon the victory platform, during the playing of the "Star Spangled Banner," they each raised one hand, covered by a black glove, in a Black Power salute (picture). Their gesture was meant to bring attention to the conditions of blacks in the United States. This act, since it went against the ideals of the Olympic Games, caused the two athletes to be expelled from the Games. The IOC stated, "The basic principle of the Olympic Games is that politics plays no part whatsoever in them. U.S. athletes violated this universally accepted principle . . . to advertise domestic political views."*

Dick Fosbury (United States) drew attention not because of any political statement, but because of his unorthodox jumping technique. Though there had been several techniques previously used to get over the high jump bar, Fosbury jumped over the bar backwards and head first. This form of jumping became known as the "Fosbury flop."

Bob Beamon (United States) made headlines by an amazing long jump. Known as an erratic jumper because he often took off with the wrong foot, Beamon tore down the runway, jumped with the correct foot, cycled through the air with his legs, and landed at 8.90 meters (making a world record 63 centimeters beyond the old record).

Many athletes felt that the high altitude of Mexico City affected the events, helping some athletes and hindering others. In response to complaints about the high altitude, Avery Brundage, the IOC president, stated, "The Olympic Games belong to all the world, not the part of it at sea level."**

It was at the 1968 Olympic Games that drug testing debuted.

Though these Games were filled with political statements, they were very popular Games. Approximately 5,500 athletes participated, representing 112 countries.

* John Durant, Highlights of the Olympics: From Ancient Times to the Present (New York: Hastings House Publishers, 1973) 185.
** Avery Brundage as quoted in Allen Guttmann, The Olympics: A History of the Modern Games (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1992) 133.

1964 Tokyo
Olympic Stadium

1964 Tokyo Olympic Stadium

1964
1968 Mexico City
Olympic Stadium

1968 Mexico City Olympic Stadium

1968
1972 Munich
Olympic Stadium

1972 Munich Olympic Stadium

1972


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