Full name: Bente Skari-Martinsen
Height: 5-8 (173 cm)
Weight: 139 lbs (63 kg)
Born: September 10, 1972 in Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Affiliations: Nittedal IL, Nittedal (NOR)
Sport: Cross Country Skiing
Related Olympians: Daughter of Odd Martinsen.
Medals: 1 Gold, 2 Silver, 2 Bronze (5 Total)
Bente Skari was the dominant female cross-country skier from 1998-2003. In this period she was World Champion five times, won the total World Cup four times, and won the sprint World Cup five times in a row – 1998-2002, winning a total of 42 World Cup races. Skari won 16 Norwegian titles, the highest ever for a Norwegian female cross-country skier until 2013, when Marit Bjørgen also won her 16th title. Skari’s only Olympic gold medal came at Salt Lake City in 2002, when she won the 10 km classical race, the first individual Olympic gold medal won by a female Norwegian skier.
She was born Bente Martinsen, daughter of the well-known Norwegian cross-country skier Odd Martinsen. Bente had her World Cup début at age 19, but had to wait five more years for her first World Cup podium. Skari was a classical specialist, and her first international title came in 1999 when she was World Champion over 5 km in Ramsau, Germany. She ended her career in 2003 after winning two World Championship titles in Val di Fiemme, Italy.
Skari competed under her maiden name Bente Martinsen until the 1998-99 season. In 1999 she married Norwegian cross-country skier Geir Skari and competed later under her married name. She and her brother took over their father’s ski firm that he started in 1983, and they have done very well in the ski business. Bente Skari had an important role with the Organizing Committee for the 2011 World Nordic Ski Championships, being responsible for the cross-country events.
|1994 Winter||21||Lillehammer||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 15 kilometres||Norway||NOR||20|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 5 kilometres||Norway||NOR||3||Bronze|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 15 kilometres||Norway||NOR||6T|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 5/10 kilometres Pursuit||Norway||NOR||9|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 4 × 5 kilometres Relay||Norway||NOR||2||Silver|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 10 kilometres||Norway||NOR||1||Gold|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 30 kilometres||Norway||NOR||3||Bronze|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 5/5 kilometres Pursuit||Norway||NOR||6|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Women's 4 × 5 kilometres Relay||Norway||NOR||2||Silver|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||3||17:49.4||6:15.9||6|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||1||28:05.6||6:13.3||2||17:45.4||2||24:50.8||2|
|1994 Winter||21||Lillehammer||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||20||44:35.0||5:21.8||20||25:18.3||28|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||6T||48:19.0||5:49.3||5||27:29.9||3|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||3||1-31:36.3||23:31.0||4||45:27.2||4||1-03:26.1||3|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||5 kilometres, Classical||2||Q||13:11.7|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||5 kilometres, Freestyle||6||12:16.0||+0:13||12:03.2||16|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||Final Standings||9||29:34.1||+0:12||29:22.1||15|
|1998 Winter||25||Nagano||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||NOR||Final Standings||2||14:14.3||14:14.3||2|
|2002 Winter||29||Salt Lake City||Cross Country Skiing||Norway||NOR||Final Standings||2||12:41.2||25:57.1||1|