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Gerda Weissensteiner

Full name: Gerda Weissensteiner
Other name(s): Gerda Weißensteiner
Gender: Female
Height: 5-5 (166 cm)
Weight: 139 lbs (63 kg)
Born: January 3, 1969 in Bolzano, Bolzano-Bozen, Italy
Affiliations: G.S. Forestale, Roma (ITA)
Country: ITA Italy
Sport: Luge, Bobsleigh

Medals: 1 Gold, 1 Bronze (2 Total)

Biography

Gerda Weissensteiner was the last of eight children and began sliding on a natural luge track when she was only seven. She quickly established herself in the world class of women’s luge, which was dominated by German athletes. In the course of her career she won 13 races in the World Cup plus 16 second and third places and won the overall World Cup twice (1992-3, 1997-8), She won 11 medals at the World Luge Championships, including two gold (1993 individual and 1989 team), three silvers and six bronzes as well as a World Junior Championship in 1988. She also earned four medals at European Championships with two gold (mixed team and individual, both in 1994), one silver and one bronze. Weissensteiner crowned her career with the Olympic gold at Lillehammer in 1994. A few days after the Olympic victory, she was hit by a tragedy, when her brother died in a car accident. During the funeral a burglar broke into her home stealing the gold medal she had just received. After the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano she retired and began a new career as a youth coach.

In 2001 Weissensteiner returned to the ice but changed sports, becoming the first head of the national women's bobsled team. Her first brakeman was Antonella Bellutti, already an Olympic cycling champion in 1996, and they competed together at the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. From 2003 until her final retirement, she competed with the sprinter Jennifer Isacco, and her her, Weissensteiner won her first bob World Cup race in Calgary and placed third in the overall World Cup standings in 2003 and 2004. At the 2006 European Championships, they placed second. A crowning achievement of Weissensteiner’s second career came with the bronze medal in Torino in 2006, her last official race.

Weissensteiner also established an Italian record with six participations in the Winter Games, a record shared with fellow luger Wilfried Huber. She was Italian flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony of the Nagano Winter Games. In 2006 she was appointed Knight of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic. She also was elected as South Tyrolean athlete of the year in 1988, 1989, 1990 and 2005. She later helped train Italy’s young luge talents and acted as a press relations officer for the Italian Luge Federation. A forester by profession Weissensteiner settled in Collepietra in the municipality of Karneid in South Tyrol.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Women's Singles Italy ITA 14
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Women's Singles Italy ITA 4
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Women's Singles Italy ITA 1 Gold
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Women's Singles Italy ITA 9
2002 Winter 33 Salt Lake City Bobsleigh Women's Two Italy ITA 7
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Women's Two Italy-1 ITA 3 Bronze

Women's Singles

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Rank T IT1 IR1 IT2 IT3 IR3 ST1 ST2 ST3 SR3 IR2 SR1 SR2 IT4 IR4 IT5 IR5 ST4 SR4 ST5 SR5
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Italy ITA Final Standings 14 3:07.665
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Italy ITA Run 1 14 46.814 8.292 15 21.116 35.833 13 12.824 14.717 10.981 14
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Italy ITA Run 2 14 47.183 8.282 14 21.151 36.097 14 12.869 14.946 11.086 13 13 15 13
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Italy ITA Run 3 13 46.908 8.240 10 21.013 35.849 13 12.773 14.836 11.059 12 9 9 14
1988 Winter 19 Calgary Luge Italy ITA Run 4 13 46.760 8.247 14 21.031 35.782 13 12.784 14.751 10.978 10 13 =12 12
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Italy ITA Final Standings 4 3:07.673
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Italy ITA Run 1 4 46.954 6.352 6 12.897 23.502 =3 6.545 10.605 4.586 =5 5 6 =3 28.088 4 35.515 6 7.427 12 11.439 4
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Italy ITA Run 2 5 46.988 6.362 9 12.939 23.556 9 6.577 10.617 4.589 =5 =11 17 6 28.145 8 35.543 6 7.398 7 11.445 6
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Italy ITA Run 3 4 46.894 6.369 =9 12.948 23.553 6 6.579 10.605 4.576 4 9 =9 4 28.129 3 35.518 5 7.389 =5 11.376 5
1992 Winter 23 Albertville Luge Italy ITA Run 4 5 46.837 6.372 =9 12.949 23.545 5 6.577 10.596 4.566 4 9 6 5 28.111 3 35.437 4 7.326 4 11.400 7
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Italy ITA Final Standings 1 3:15.517
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Italy ITA Run 1 1 48.740 2.410 8 12.411 21.179 2 10.001 8.768 8.543 1 3 3 1 29.722 1 40.205 1 10.483 1 8.535 1
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Italy ITA Run 2 1 48.890 2.399 =4 12.381 21.185 2 9.982 8.804 8.573 1 2 2 2 29.758 2 40.257 1 10.499 1 8.633 3
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Italy ITA Run 3 1 48.950 2.419 10 12.482 21.311 2 10.063 8.829 8.630 1 4 4 1 29.941 2 40.437 1 10.496 1 8.513 1
1994 Winter 25 Lillehammer Luge Italy ITA Run 4 1 48.937 2.416 6 12.440 21.239 3 10.024 8.799 8.599 1 4 3 2 29.838 2 40.334 1 10.496 1 8.603 1
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Italy ITA Final Standings 9 3:26.113
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Italy ITA Run 1 8 51.744 2.829 5 20.724 27.924 9 17.895 7.200 13.963 8 6 9 13 41.887 7 9.857 8
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Italy ITA Run 2 13 51.998 2.874 14 20.769 27.971 11 17.895 7.202 14.056 16 9 9 =17 42.027 12 9.971 16
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Italy ITA Run 3 10 51.415 2.871 =12 20.619 27.758 10 17.748 7.139 13.870 10 =9 9 12 41.628 =9 9.787 9
1998 Winter 29 Nagano Luge Italy ITA Run 4 9 50.956 2.832 6 20.521 27.632 9 17.689 7.111 13.727 8 9 9 =13 41.359 9 9.597 7

Women's Two

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Partner Phase Unit
2002 Winter 33 Salt Lake City Bobsleigh Italy ITA Antonella Bellutti Final Standings
2002 Winter 33 Salt Lake City Bobsleigh Italy ITA Antonella Bellutti Run 1
2002 Winter 33 Salt Lake City Bobsleigh Italy ITA Antonella Bellutti Run 2
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Italy-1 ITA Jennifer Isacco Final Standings
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Italy-1 ITA Jennifer Isacco Run 1
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Italy-1 ITA Jennifer Isacco Run 2
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Italy-1 ITA Jennifer Isacco Run 3
2006 Winter 37 Torino Bobsleigh Italy-1 ITA Jennifer Isacco Run 4
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