TOKYO 1964

  • Date of Lighting: August 21, 1964
  • Colour of the torch: silver
  • Height: 64,8cm
  • Weight: 825gr
  • Number of torches: 6.000
  • Number of torchbearers: 101.866 (escort runners included)
  • First torchbearer: Giorgos Marsellos (110m hurdles, high jump)
  • Last torchbearer: Yoshinori Sakai
  • Countries crossed: Greece, Turkey, Lebanon, Iran, Pakistan, India, Burma, Thailand, Malaysia, Hong-Kong, Taiwan and Japan
  • Kilometres: 26.065

It was the first time in the Games history that the Hellenic Olympic Committee (HOC) appointed the first torchbearer and Greek team’s Flagbearer for the nations’ parade at the Tokyo Games opening ceremony, Greek athletics champion George Marsellos. Maria Moscholiou was once again the High Priestess.

Torchbearers ran a 1,000 metres distance across Greece and 1,500 metres across Japan. In Japan, two deputy runners and 20 athletes escorted each torchbearer. Two events characterized the relay.

It was the first time the flame crossed the Katmandu city, in Nepal which had then secured a place in the IOC, while a typhoon hit Hong Kong when the Olympic torch crossed the city on its trip to Tokyo. For security reasons, authorities decided the Olympic flame should fly to the Japanese capital. There were three different torches which flew to Tokyo in special lamps.

At the Land of the Rising Sun, there were four torch relay legs, while all four flames finally met at a site in front of the Imperial Palace. The name of the plane which carried the flame from Hong Kong to Japan was “City of Tokyo”.