Olympic Flame Hoax


Olympic Flame Hoax

Seeing this iconic picture postcard of Ron Clarke lighting the Olympic cauldron at the M.C.G in 1956 reminded me of two bits of trivia.

Firstly, the well known fact that Ron Clarke had burnt his forearm while reaching in to light the flame, but the other bit of trivia is not so well known.

Flame Hoax


During the Sydney leg of the journey, the Mayor of Sydney was fooled when he accepted a fake torch from prankster Barry Larkin.



Barry Larkin, now a veterinary surgeon from Melbourne, planned to interupt the torch relay along with eight other students from St John's College, believing that the Olympic Flame received too much reverence.

The fake torch was hardly a master forgery, which makes the fact that it was passed off as the real deal all the more humorous. The fake was made using no more than a wooden chair leg that had been painted silver, holding at top a plum pudding can. As for the flame, which proved to be far from a reverent affair, this was created using a pair of underpants, soaked in kerosene.

After a shaky start, Larkin ran with the torch to Sydney Town Hall protected by police who thought that he was the official runner, where he presented the torch to the Mayor of Sydney, Pat Hills.

As the mayor was unprepared, he did not look at the torch and went straight to his speech. While Hills was talking, Larkin walked quietly away, avoiding attention. Hills didn't realise at all that the torch was fraudulent until someone whispered in his ear and told him it was a fake. Hills looked around for Larkin, but by now Larkin had merged into the crowd and escaped.

In the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the media reported the story of Larkin's hoax. As a result, the police took measures to prevent the hoax from happening again. This included security guards lining the route. However, this was not popular as some people complained that they could not see the torch. Some hoaxers did try to disrupt the relay; two people attempted to steal the torch and one man tried to put out the torch using a fire extinguisher, but no-one succeeded.

1956 Olympic Flame Journey


The Olympic Flame for the 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne was lit at Olympia in Greece on the 2nd November 1956.

Greek runners took the flame to Athens where it was then transferred to a miner's lamp and flown by Qantas to Darwin in the Northern Territory. From there, a Royal Australian Air Force jet bomber flew it to Cairns, Queensland on 9 November 1956.

The first runner in Australia was Con Verevis, who was of Greek parentage, and then relayed down the east coast using diecast aluminium torches. The flame arrived in Melbourne on 22 November 1956 and used to light the stadium flame by Ron Clarke.



Melbourne Link Olympic Flame Hoax Link opens in new browser window

Opens in New Window en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1956_Summer_Olympics Link opens in new browser window

Opens in New Window en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_Larkin_(Olympics) Link opens in new browser window



0  LOVE IT    Like This Page | Click here to LIKE


Link opens new page Content > View Category | Melbourne | View Mobile Friendly Page

Link opens new page This Page > Update | Edit This Page




Click here to edit / update this page





Facebook Twitter Google+ YouTube Instagram
Melbourne What's On In Jul 2016 >
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31


Featured
INXSIVE @ Live At London Eleven
View INXSIVE @ Live At London Eleven
INXS helped shape the Australian musical landscape in the 80's and 90's. Their infectious blend | Read On..


Melbourne's Exclusive Magic Show
View Melbourne's Exclusive Magic Show
Witness Impossible Occurrences, one of Melbourne's most exclusive attractions. Award winning | Read On..


Check Out
The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards
View The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards
The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 will be held in Melbourne in a major coup for Tourism Australia. William Drew, from World’s 50 Best | Read On..

Mel's Pick
The SALT Foundation
View The SALT Foundation
The SALT Foundation vision is to be partnering in our small way with those on the journey to make | Read On..

How To Find Stuff
View How To Find Stuff
Help | How To Find What You Are Looking For Here is a simple guide to OnlyMelbourne. From a | Read On..

What's Hot
Trending


Newsletter
Stay in touch | Free weekly newsletter.