AFTER the Second World War we were to witness a similar startling advance to that following the 1914/18 conflict one even more vivid than that proclaimed by the advent of Grafstrom in 1920. This time it came from the U.S.A., so smoothly, and yet so surely, that it was accepted without any of the query or question with which Grafstrom and Henie had had to contend. The reason for this was, that there was no great neutral personality holding any of the titles, and, as it
,were expecting to go on doing so, as had been rather the case in 1918.
Graham Sharp of Great Britain, the last holder of the mens championship, had served throughout the war, most of the time in the Middle East and, although he did win the 1946 British Championship again (after two week practice), and it is true, was persuaded to skate in the 1948 Olympic Winter Games which the British held at St. Moritz, he was already a married man with a young family and large business responsibilities, and to all intents and purposes, had retired.
Megan Taylor (also of Great Britain) had turned professional at the outbreak of war or thereabouts and therefore the ladies title was also open. In the pairs, Ernst Baier and Maxi Herber of Germany had gone into the money in a big way. So that there were the three great vacancies to be filled. Into the shoes of their predecessors stepped Miss Barbara Ann Scott of Canada, Hans Gerschwiler of Switzerland, and the Belgians, Mile M. Lannoy and Pierre Baugniet, all skating in the manner universally accepted before the war.