March 27th 1896: 3rd day of the events
The shooting range that was constructed especially for the Games near Kallithea was inaugurated that morning. The 160 athletes who signed up for the contest were divided into many groups, while only ten of them were foreigners. It took hours for all the groups to compete and so the contest continued in the following day as well.
This elegant sport took place in a specially constructed site near the Temple of Zeus (Olympeion). Sixteen athletes took part and they competed individually or in pairs. Only the preliminary contest took place that day. The finals were set for the sixth day pf the games.
The cycling race took place at 1.00 p.m. in the velodrome of New Faliro, which was constructed especially for the Games. This was a 100km race and the cyclists had to cover 300 rounds. At first the spectators watched the race with interest but later on the spectacle became dull and the spectators lost their interest. Around 3.00 p.m. most of the athletes had abandoned the race due to exhaustion, until Leon Flameng for France and George Kolettis for Greece were the only ones left to pursue victory. Finally, the French athlete was declared winner and the spectators applauded enthusiastically.
In the evening, only a small crowd gathered at the illuminated
streets and squares because of the bad weather. Undoubtedly
weather was not the Games' best ally.