Zdeněk Remsa

* 1928  †︎ 2019

  • "First, I invited all the boys and I told them, 'Well, gentlemen, if you want to be in the crew, you will have to obey my instructions. We will train hard, not like before. It will be a hard training, you have to go through it. If anyone is cheating, he falls. ‘You promise me here that you will listen to me and that you will train as I prescribe it for you.‘ Everyone approved it, they started working, and the results started to show. I came in 1960, I said: 'Well, gentlemen, in 1962, there is a world championship in Zakopane, there should be one of us around the tenth place by then.' And the two of the best ones got injured – Motejlek and Matouš. But Doubek with Ing. Nevluda they were 10th and 11th. I confirmed it there and the boys knew we were doing well. And they started working hard, everyone. I could count on them. I knew they would not bleat on it. I would find out on the tests."

  • "I went abroad for the first time. I was sitting with Jarda Droubný and Zábrodský in the same compartment when we went to the Olympics. And I remember when the train stopped in Basel, I was looking out of the window like that and there were people driving, selling bananas, oranges - my eyes opened wide. Both boys bought me a banana and an orange. It was amazing, it was an experience. I will not forget that. And in Mořice it was interesting, for the first time outside, I was a beginner. But the Olympics were beautiful, unforgettable. I have to say it was something wonderful."

  • "They called us Tord Nothilfe, we were the first ones in the trenches near Olomouc at Svatý Kopeček. Then they took us to Opava and there they put us in transports and we were loading the wounded into trains behind the front. And from there we ran away, we wrote such a confirmation. We went to the border in an orderly way, and across the border I said: "Guys, nobody knows anyone, bye." And so a friend from Studenec and I went home."

  • "It is a village in the foothills and I lived in a gamekeeper's lodge, its name was Židovna (Jewish), where my grandfather was a gamekeeper. He had the first skis from Mr. Count Harrach from Christiania [back then the name for Oslo, ed. note.] and went to feed the game in the woods on them. Well, I started moving on them as a small child, more sporadically."

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    u pamětníka doma, Praha 8, 17.01.2019

    duration: 01:34:42
    media recorded in project Sports Stories of the 20th Century
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

Hard trainings paid off

Zdeněk Remsa in Studenenc, 1930s
Zdeněk Remsa in Studenenc, 1930s
photo: archive of the witness

Zdeněk Remsa was born on December 29, 1928 in Horní Branná in the Krkonoše Mountains. He dedicated his life to ski jumping. He rained and lectured on this sport for 50 years. With two younger brothers, he grew up in Studenec in the family of a barber and a factory worker. During World War II, he participated in the first jumping competitions. In 1944 he was called to the north of Moravia, where he loaded the wounded into a train and dug trenches for returning German soldiers. After the war, he participated in the Winter Olympic Games in St. Moritz in 1948, where he ended up on the 20th place in ski jumping. He then worked in the General Directorate of the Czechoslovak Textile Works. In 1951 he became the champion of the republic in ski jumping. A year later, his wife Vlasta gave birth to a daughter Eva. Due to frequent refusals of foreign trips, he enrolled in the Central Army House in Prague and joined the Communist Party. In 1960 he ended his active jumping career and became the coach of the Czechoslovak national team. With “Remsa Boys” he achieved amazing results during 10 years (eg Jiří Raška’s gold and silver medals at the Olympic Games in Grenoble 1968). He coached the Yugoslav national team in the 1970s. In 1974 he became the central coach of the Association of Skiers in Czechoslovakia, where he coached jumpers. He dedicated the years from 1981 to 1995 to the sport of jumping in Slovenia, where, among other things, he trained at the local coaching school. At the age of seventy, he trained young people in Lomnice nad Popelkou. He ended his coaching career after 2010. In 1999, he won the prestigious Silver Olympic Order. Zdeněk Remsa died on June 22, 2019 in Prague.