Speed Skating in History

Events in Sport

  • 1890-03-02 Norwegian speed skater Oskar Fredriksen sets inaugural 5,000m world record of 9:19.8 in Stockholm, Sweden
  • 1905-01-22 Dutchman Coen de Koning wins the 1,500m, 5,000m & 10,000m at World Allround Speed Skating Championships in Groningen, Netherlands to become 2nd Dutchman to win a world title
  • 1914-01-10 Norwegian speed skater Oscar Mathisen skates world 500m record in 43.7s in Oslo, Norway

Olympic Games1st Winter Olympics

1924-01-26 American skater Charles Jewtraw claims the first ever Winter Olympic gold medal; wins 500m speed skating event in 44.0s at the Chamonix Games in France

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Einar Landvik, Nordic skiier from Norway, competes in the first-ever Winter Olympics in Chamonix, France, 1924
Einar Landvik, Nordic skiier from Norway, competes in the first-ever Winter Olympics in Chamonix, France, 1924
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  • 1924-01-26 Clas Thunberg of Finland claims his first of 4 gold medals when he wins the 5,000m speed skating in 2:20.8 at the Chamonix Winter Olympics
  • 1924-01-27 Clas Thunberg of Finland claims 3 gold medals in one day when he wins the 1,500m, 10,000m and all-round speed skating events at the Chamonix Winter Olympics; won 5,000m the day before
  • 1928-02-13 Clas Thunberg of Finland wins his 3rd Olympic gold medal when he dead-heats with Norway’s Bernt Evensen in the 500m speed skating at the St. Moritz Winter Games
  • 1928-02-13 Legendary Norwegian speed skater Ivar Ballangrud wins the first of 2 straight 5,000m Olympic gold medals when he beats Julius Skutnabb of Finland by 9 seconds in St. Moritz
  • 1928-02-14 Clas Thunberg of Finland wins his 2nd gold medal of the Games and 4th career title when he takes out the 1,500m speed skating at the St. Moritz Winter Olympics
  • 1932-02-05 American speed skater Jack Shea wins the 1,500m at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics; clinches sprint double after also taking out the 500m
  • 1932-02-08 American speed skater Irving Jaffee wins the 10,000m at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics; clinches distance double after also taking out the 5,000m
  • 1936-02-13 Ivar Ballangrud of Norway narrowly misses winning all 4 speed skating events at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Olympics; finishes 2nd in 1,500m just 1.0s behind teammate Charles Mathiesen
  • 1936-02-14 Norwegian speed skater Ivar Ballangrud sets Olympic record 17:24.3 to win the 10,000m at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games; his 3rd gold medal from 4 events and 4th career Olympic gold
  • 1948-01-31 An unprecedented 3-way tie for the silver medal in the 500m speed skating at the St. Moritz Winter Olympics; Americans Robert Fitzgerald & Ken Bartholomew, and Thomas Byberg of Norway are equal on 43.2s; Finn Helgesen of Norway wins gold, 43.1s
  • 1952-02-16 United States goes 1-2 in the 500m speed skating at the Olso Winter Olympics with Ken Henry taking gold ahead of teammate Don McDermott; Norwegian Hjalmar Anderson dominates remaining 3 speed skating events
  • 1952-02-18 Norwegian speed skater Hjalmar Anderson wins his 3rd gold medal of the Oslo Winter Olympics when he claims the 10,000m in Olympic record 16:45.8; also wins gold in 1,500m and 5,000m

  • 1956-01-30 Soviet 500m speed skating champion Yevgeni Grishin wins 2nd gold medal of the Cortina d'Ampezzo Winter Olympics when he dead heats teammate Yuri Mikhatlov in the 1,500m in world record 2:08.6
  • 1968-02-09 A rare 3-way tie for silver in the women's 500m speed skating at the Grenoble Winter Olympics; Soviet Lyudmila Titova wins from American trio of Jenny Fish, Mary Meyers and Dianne Holum
  • 1968-02-12 Dutch speed skater Ans Schut wins the women's 3,000m event at the Grenoble Winter Olympics; first 10 finishers beat previous Olympic record set in Squaw Valley (1960)
  • 1972-02-04 Dutch speed skater Ard Schenk wins the 5,000m at the Sapporo Winter Olympics; also wins the 1,500m and 10,000m gold medals
  • 1972-02-05 German speed skater Erhard Keller wins his 2nd consecutive Olympic 500m gold medal at the Sapporo Winter Games after taking out the event in Grenoble (1968)
  • 1972-02-06 Dutch speed skater Ard Schenk follows his win in the 5,000m with victory in the 1,500m, on his way to 3 gold medals at the Sapporo Winter Olympics; also wins 10,000m
  • 1972-02-07 Dutch Olympic 1,500m and 5,000m speed skating champion Ard Schenk wins his 3rd gold medal at the Sapporo Winter Games when he takes out the 10,000m
  • 1972-02-20 Ard Schenk wins world championship for speed skating
  • 1977-02-13 Eric Heiden is 1st American to win world speed skating championship
  • 1980-02-15 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 500m in Olympic record 38.03s; first of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • 1980-02-15 East German speed skater Karin Enke wins first of 3 career Olympic gold medals with victory in the 500m at Lake Placid Winter; wins 1,000m & 1,500m in Sarajevo (1984)
  • 1980-02-16 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 5,000m in Olympic record 7:02.29; second of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • 1980-02-19 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 1,000m in Olympic record 1:15.18; third of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • 1980-02-21 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 1,500m in Olympic record 1:55.44; 4th of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • 1980-02-23 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins Olympic 10,000m in world record 14:28.13; sweeps all 5 speed skating events at Lake Placid; only athlete to win 5 gold medals at one Winter Games
  • 1984-02-09 East German speed skater Karin Enke wins the 1,500m in world record 2:03.42 at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics; also wins 1,000m gold
  • 1984-02-14 Canadian speed skater Gaétan Boucher takes out the 1,000m gold medal at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics; also wins 1,500m; narrowly beats Soviet skater Sergey Khlebnikov in both events
  • 1984-02-15 An East German sweep of the medals in the women's 3,000m speed skating at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics; Andrea Schöne takes gold ahead of teammates Karin Enke and Gabi Zange
  • 1984-02-16 Canadian speed skater Gaétan Boucher takes out the 1,500m at the Sarajevo Winter Olympics, his second gold medal of the Games; also wins the 1,000m
  • 1985-02-17 Dutch speed skater Hein Vergeer becomes World Allround champion

  • 1986-02-16 Dutch speed skater Hein Vergeer becomes World Allround champion for the second time

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1988-02-27 Bonnie Blair (US) wins Olympic 500m speed skating in record 39.1

Speed Skater Bonnie Blair
Speed Skater
Bonnie Blair
  • 1988-09-24 East German cyclist Christa Luding-Rothenburger wins silver medal in the women's track sprint at the Seoul Olympics; first athlete to win medals at Summer & Winter Games in same year; won speed skating gold in Calgary
  • 2014-02-08 Netherlands sweeps the medals in the men's 5,000m speed skating at the Sochi Winter Olympics; Sven Kramer retains title (Vancouver (2010) ahead of teammates Jan Blokhuijsen and Jorrit Bergsma
  • 2014-02-10 Netherlands sweeps the medals in the men's 500m speed skating at the Sochi Winter Olympics; Michel Mulder wins gold ahead of teammates Jan Smeekens and Ronald Mulder
  • 2014-02-10 Canadian short track speed skater Charles Hamelin wins his 3rd career Olympic gold medal in the 1,500m in Sochi; Vancouver (2010) 500m and 5,000m relay champion
  • 2014-02-16 Netherlands sweeps the medals in the women's 1,500m speed skating at the Sochi Winter Olympics; Jorien ter Mors wins gold ahead of teammates Ireen Wüst and Lotte van Beek
  • 2014-02-18 Netherlands sweeps the medals in the men's 1,000m speed skating at the Sochi Winter Olympics; Jorrit Bergsma wins gold ahead of teammates Sven Kramer and Bob de Jong
  • 2014-02-19 Czech speed skater Martina Sáblíková retains her Olympic 5,000m title (Vancouver 2010) in Sochi; also Vancouver 3,000m gold
  • 2014-02-21 Park Seung-hi wins Olympic women's 1,000m short track speed skating gold medal in Sochi for her 2nd gold medal of the Games; 3,000m relay winner
  • 2014-02-21 Viktor An of Russia wins 6th career Olympic short track speed skating gold medal as part of the 5,000m relay team in Sochi; 2nd gold of the day (500m) and 3rd of Games (1,000m)
  • 2014-02-22 Dutch speed skaters Jorien ter Mors (1,500m champion) and Ireen Wüst (3,000m winner) each claim their 2nd gold medal of the Sochi Winter Olympics as part of the women's pursuit team
  • 2018-02-11 Dutchman Sven Kramer becomes only male speed skater to win same Olympic event 3 times, claiming gold in the 5,000m at Pyongchang; first man to win total 8 Olympic medals in the sport
  • 2018-02-12 Dutch speed skater Ireen Wüst becomes first Winter Olympian to win an individual gold medal in 4 straight Games with victory in the 1,500m at Pyeongchang; first speed skater to win 10 Olympic medals
  • 2018-02-13 Dutch speed skater Kjeld Nuis wins the men's 1,500m gold medal at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics; also takes 1,000m gold
  • 2018-02-14 Dutch speed skater Jorien ter Mors wins her 3rd career Olympic gold medal in the 1,000m at Pyeongchang; 1,500m and team pursuit champion in Sochi (2014)
  • 2018-02-20 Dutch skater Jorien ter Mors becomes first female to win Olympic medals in 2 different sports at a single Winter Games (Pyeongchang); 1,000m speed skating gold, 3000m short track relay bronze
  • 2018-02-20 Dutch women’s short track speed skating 3000m relay team skates a world record 4:03.471 in the B Final at the Pyeongchang Olympics; South Korea takes the gold medal in an inferior time, 4:07.361; Dutch win bronze by default
  • 2018-02-22 Chinese short track speed skater Wu Dajing beats men's 500m world record twice en route to winning the gold medal at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics; 2nd man in history under 40 seconds (39.584s)
  • 2018-02-23 Dutch speed skater Kjeld Nuis wins his second gold medal of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in the 1,000m; also 1,500m champion
  • 2018-02-24 Japanese speed skater Nana Takagi wins her 2nd gold medal of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in the women's mass start event; also member Japan's successful pursuit team
  • 2018-02-24 2016 world mass start speed skating champion Lee Seung-hoon of South Korea wins the event at Pyeongchang Winter Olympics; also Olympic 10,000m champion Vancouver (2010)

Birthdays in Sport


Person of interestJaap Eden

1873-10-19 Jaap Eden, Dutch world champion cyclist and speed skater, born in Groningen, Netherlands (d. 1925)

Cyclist and Speed Skater Jaap Eden
Cyclist and Speed Skater
Jaap Eden
  • 1879-03-30 Coen de Koning, Dutch speed skater (World Alllround Speed Skating champion 1905), born in Edam. Netherlands (d. 1954)
  • 1888-10-04 Oscar Mathisen, Norwegian speed skater (5-time World Champion all-round), born in Kristiania, Norway (d. 1954)
  • 1893-04-05 Clas Thunberg, Finnish speed skater (Olympic gold 1924, 28), born in Helsinki, Finland (d. 1973)
  • 1900-05-05 Charles Jewtraw, American 500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1924), born in Clinton County, New York (d. 1996)
  • 1904-03-07 Ivar Ballangrud, Norwegian speed skater (Olympic gold 5,000m 1928; 500m, 5,000m 10,000m 1936), born in Lunner, Norway (d. 1969)
  • 1906-08-28 Klaas Schenk, Dutch speed skating coach (1952, 56, 60 Winter Olympics; father of triple gold medallist Ard), born in Wieringerwaard, Hollands Kroon, Netherlands (d. 1983)
  • 1910-09-07 John Shea, American 500m/1500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1932), born in Lake Placid, New York (d. 2002)
  • 1911-02-12 Charles Mathiesen, Norwegian 1500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1936)
  • 1919-01-15 Åke Seyffarth, Swedish speed skater (Olympic gold 10,000m 1948; WR 3,000 & 5,000m), born in Stockholm, Sweden (d. 1998)
  • 1922-08-23 Eevi Huttunen, Finnish speed skater (8 World C'ship gold 1951-59), born in Karttula, Finland (d. 2015)
  • 1923-03-12 Hjalmar Andersen, Norwegian 1500, 5K, 10K speed skater (Olympic gold 1952), (d. 2013)
  • 1928-01-23 Kees Broekman, Dutch speed skater (Olympic silver 1952), born in De Lier, Netherlands (d. 1992)
  • 1929-01-07 Kenneth Henry, American 500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1952)
  • 1929-01-07 Ken Henry, American speed skater (Olympic gold 500m 1952), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2009)
  • 1931-03-23 Yevgeni Grishin, Russian speed skater (4 Olympic gold 1956, 60), born in Tula, Russia (d. 2005)
  • 1931-11-23 Yevgeni Grischin, USSR, 500m/1500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1956, 60)
  • 1933-11-06 Knut Johannesen, Norwegian 5K/10K speed skater (Olympic gold 1964), born in Oslo, Norway
  • 1934-06-09 Helga Haase, East German 500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1960), born in Danzig, Germany (d. 1989)
  • 1938-02-25 Viktor Kosichkin, Russian speed skater (Olympic gold 1960), born in Rybnoye (d. 2012)
  • 1938-05-20 Christina Bass-Kaiser, 3K Dutch speed skater (Olympic gold 1972)
  • 1938-12-31 Atje Keulen-Deelstra, Dutch speed skater (world champ, born in Grou, Netherlands (d. 2013)
  • 1939-03-08 Lydia Skoblikova, USSR, speed skater (Olympics-6 gold-1960, 64)
  • 1943-02-09 Jonny Nilsson, Swedish 10K speed skater (Olympic gold 1964)
  • 1944-07-28 Daniel Morelon, French speed skater (Olympic gold 1968, 72), born in Bourg-en-Bresse, France
  • 1944-09-16 Ard Schenk, Dutch speed skater (3 Olympic gold 1972), born in Anna Paulowna, Netherlands
  • 1944-12-24 Erhard Keller, German speed skater (Olympic gold 1968, 72 500m), born in Günzburg, Germany
  • 1946-02-04 Mary Meyer, American 500m speed skater (Olympic silver 1968)
  • 1950-06-25 Tatyana Averina, Russian speed skater 1K, 3K (Olympic gold 1976), born in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia (d. 2001)
  • 1950-10-14 Sheila Young Ochowicz, American speed skater (Olympic gold/sil-76), born in Birmingham, Michigan
  • 1951-10-05 Leah Poulos-Mueller, American speed skater (Olympic gold 1980), born in Berwyn, Illinois
  • 1955-09-06 Anne Henning, American 500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1972), born in Raleigh, North Carolina
  • 1958-06-14 Eric Heiden, American speed skater (5 Olympic gold medals 1980), born in Madison, Wisconsin
  • 1959-09-27 Beth Heiden, American 3000m speed skater (Olympic bronze 1980), born in Madison, Wisconsin
  • 1960-12-01 Andrea Ehrig-Mitscherlich, German [GDR] speed skater (Olympic gold 3,000m 1984), born in Dreden, Germany
  • 1961-02-11 Mary Docter, American 3000m speed skater (Olympics 1980, 84, 88, 92), born in Madison, Wisconsin
  • 1961-06-20 Karin Enke, German speed skater (3 Olympic gold 1980, 84), born in Dresden, Germany
  • 1962-12-01 Sylvie Daigle, Canadian speed skater (Olympic gold 3k relay 1992; World C'ship gold overall x 5), born in Sherbrooke, Quebec
  • 1963-02-22 Dave Besteman, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Madison, Wisconsin
  • 1963-12-01 Nathalie Lambert, Canadian short-track speed skater (Olympic gold 3,000m relay 1992; World C'ships gold overall 1991, 93-94), born n Montreal, Quebec

Person of interestBonnie Blair

1964-03-18 Bonnie Blair, American speed skater (Olympic 5 gold/bronze 1988, 92, 94), born in Champaign, Illinois

Speed Skater Bonnie Blair
Speed Skater
Bonnie Blair
  • 1964-05-01 Yvonne van Gennip, Dutch speed skater (Olympic gold 1,500m, 3,000m, 5,000m 1988), born in Haarlem, Netherlands
  • 1965-03-24 Angela Zuckerman, speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in St Louis, Missouri
  • 1965-05-28 Chantal Bailey, Champaign Ill, speed skater (Olympics 1994)
  • 1965-06-17 Dan Jansen, American speed skater (Olympic gold 1984, 88, 92), born in West Allis, Wisconsin
  • 1967-06-25 Brian Wanek, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 1968-10-29 Johann Olav Koss, speed skater (Olympics 3 gold-1994)
  • 1968-11-08 Michelle Kline, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Golden Valley, Minnesota
  • 1969-01-11 Dave Cruikshank, Northbrook Ill, speed skater (Olympics 1994)
  • 1969-04-07 Peggy Clasen, speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Saint Paul, Minnesota
  • 1970-02-10 Brendan Eppert, US speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in St Louis, Missouri
  • 1970-02-15 Nathaniel Mills, US speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Evanston, Illinois
  • 1970-09-24 Kristin Talbot, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Schuylerville New York
  • 1972-09-19 David Tamburrino, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Saratoga Springs, New York
  • 1973-10-26 Brian Smith, American speed skater (Olympics 1994), born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  • 1975-01-21 Casey FitzRandolph, American speed skater
  • 1975-05-24 Marc Gagnon, Canadian short track speed skater (Olympic gold 1998, 2002), born in Chicoutimi, Quebec, Canada
  • 1976-12-04 Kristina Groves, Canadian speed skater (Olympic silver 1,500m, team pursuit 2006, silver 1500m bronze 3000m 2010), born in Ottawa, Ontario
  • 1977-02-07 Christine Scheels, New Berlin Wis, speed skater (Olympics 1994)
  • 1979-06-22 Joey Cheek, American speed skater
  • 1979-08-12 Cindy Klassen, Canadian speed skater
  • 1980-11-13 François-Louis Tremblay, Canadian short track speed skater
  • 1982-05-22 Apolo Anton Ohno, American short track speed skater
  • 1982-08-13 Shani Davis, American speed skater (Olympic gold 2006, 10), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1984-10-21 Anouk Leblanc-Boucher, French Canadian short track speed skater
  • 1985-02-06 Joji Kato, Japanese speed skater, born in Yamagata, Japan
  • 1986-02-01 Jorrit Bergsma, Dutch speed skater (Olympic gold 10,000m 2014; World Single Distance C'ship 2013, 15, 17, 19), born in Oldeboorn, Netherlands
  • 1986-04-01 Ireen Wüst, Dutch speed skater (Olympic gold 3,000m 2006, 14; 1500m 2010, 14; team 2014; World All-round C'ship gold x 7), born in Goirle, Netherlands
  • 1986-04-23 Sven Kramer, Dutch speed skater, born in Heerenveen, Netherlands
  • 1987-04-27 Elliott Shriane, Australian short track speed skater, born in Brisbane, Australia
  • 1989-04-01 Jan Blokhuijsen, Dutch long-track speed skater (Olympic gold team pursuit 2014; World Single Distance C'ship gold 2012, 13, 16, 17), born in Zuid-Scharwoude, Netherlands
  • 1992-07-02 Nana Takagi, Japanese speed skater (Olympic gold mass start, team pursuit 2018), born in Makubetsu, Japan
  • 1992-12-28 Lara van Ruijven, Dutch short track speed skater (World C'ship gold 500m 2019; Olympic bronze 3000m relay 2018), born in Naaldwijk, Netherlands (d. 2020)

Weddings in Sport


LoveWedding of Interest

1996-06-23 Five-time Olympic speed skater gold medalist Bonnie Blair (32) weds four-time Olympian Dave Cruikshank (27) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Speed Skater Bonnie Blair
Speed Skater
Bonnie Blair

Deaths in Sport


Person of interestJaap Eden

1925-02-02 Jaap Eden, Dutch world champion cyclist and speed skater, dies at 51

Cyclist and Speed Skater Jaap Eden
Cyclist and Speed Skater
Jaap Eden
  • 1954-04-10 Oscar Mathisen, Norwegian speed skater (5-time World Champion all-round), dies at 65
  • 1954-07-29 Coen de Koning, Dutch speed skater (World Alllround Speed Skating champion 1905), dies at 75
  • 1969-06-01 Ivar Ballangrud, Norwegian speed skater (Olympic gold 5,000m 1928; 500m, 5,000m 10,000m 1936), dies at 65
  • 1973-04-28 Clas Thunberg, Finnish speed skater (Olympic gold 1924, 28), dies at 80
  • 1992-11-08 Kees [Cornelis] Broekman, speed skater (Olympic silver 1952), dies
  • 1993-04-03 Klaas Schenk, Dutch speed skater and coach (coach 1952, 56, 60 Winter Olympics; father of triple gold medallist Ard), dies at 86
  • 1994-02-19 Renske Vellinga, Dutch speed-skater, dies in auto-accident at 19
  • 1996-01-26 Charles Jewtraw, American 500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1924), dies at 95
  • 1998-01-01 Åke Seyffarth, Swedish speed skater (Olympic gold 10,000m 1948; WR 3,000 & 5,000m), dies at 78
  • 2001-08-22 Tatyana Averina, Russian speed skater 1K, 3K (Olympic gold 1976), dies at 61
  • 2002-01-22 John Shea, American 500m/1500m speed skater (Olympic gold 1932), dies at 91
  • 2005-07-09 Yevgeni Grishin, Russian speed skater (4 Olympic gold 1956, 60), dies at 74
  • 2009-03-01 Ken Henry, American speed skater (Olympic gold 500m 1952), dies at 80
  • 2012-03-30 Viktor Kosichkin, Russian speed skater and 1960 Olympic gold medalist, dies at 74
  • 2013-02-22 Atje Keulen-Deelstra, Dutch speed skater, dies at 74
  • 2013-03-27 Hjalmar Andersen, Norwegian speed skater, dies from trauma due to a fall at 90
  • 2015-12-03 Eevi Huttunen, Finnish speed skater (8 World C'ship gold 1951-59), dies at 93
  • 2020-07-10 Lara van Ruijven, Dutch short track speed skater (World C'ship gold 500m 2019; Olympic bronze 3000m relay 2018), dies from an autoimmune disease at 27