The question is impossible to answer, since there were many athletic events in the fisrt MODERN Olympics.
The question would be plausible if pertaining to the first Olympic Games of the antiquity (776 BC). The answer is: One event - the stadium race.
what was the only athletic event at the first ancient olympic games?
The year of the first modern day Olympics was 1896. The event was held in Athens, Greece.
100 meter dash
In the modern Olympics, that was 1896.
Léon Flameng won the 100 kilometer event, the first cycling event ever held at a modern Olympics, at the 1896 Games in Athens.
The first event competed at the Ancient Olympics was the stade race, a foot race of approximately 192 meters. The first event competed at the Modern Olympics was the 100 meter dash.
Shot put has been an event in the Modern Olympics since the first Modern Games in 1896.
Modern Olympics: first medal awarded was in the Men's Triple Jump in 1896.
It was in 1896 when James Connolly of America became the very first champion of modern Olympics. He participated and won in the triple jump event during the opening day.
James Connolly in triple jump.
The First Olympics were held in Athens. According to the legend Heracles was the founder of this athletic event. Heracles also known as Zeus's son. It was the only athletic event that was held in Athens at the time.