National Olympic Committee of the Republic of Belarus

Sapporo, Japan
3–13 february 1972

The 1972 Sapporo Games in Japan were the first to be held outside Europe or the United States. The subject of amateurism stirred controversy when skier Karl Schranz was banned for receiving payment from ski product manufacturers, but full-time ice hockey players from Communist nations were allowed to compete. Galina Kulakova of the USSR won all three cross-country skiing events for women. Ard Schenk of the Netherlands took three golds in speed skating. In Alpine skiing, little-known Marie-Theres Nadig of Switzerland won both the downhill and the giant slalom. Norway's Magnar Solberg won the 20km race to become the first repeat winner in an individual biathlon event. Before the Sapporo Games, Japan had never won a gold medal in the Winter Olympics, but in the normal hill ski jumping event, three Japanese jumpers, led by Yukio Kasaya, swept the medals.

35 NOCs (Nations)
1,006 athletes (205 women, 801 men)
35 events