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Figure Skating at the 1924 Chamonix Winter Games:

Women's Singles

Figure Skating at the 1924 Winter Games: Next Winter Games

Events:
Phases:

Host City: Chamonix, France
Venue(s): Ice Stadium, Chamonix
Date Started: January 28, 1924
Date Finished: January 29, 1924
Format: Each judge ranked each skater by Ordinal Placement from first through last place. The Ordinal Placement for each judge was based on Total Points awarded by that judge to the skaters. The points were based on 60% for Compulsory Figures and 40% for Free Skating. Final placement was determined by a Majority Placement rule. Thus, if a skater was ranked first by a majority of the judges, that skater was placed first overall, and the process was repeated for each place. If no absolute majority for a place existed, the tiebreakers were, in order: 1) Total Ordinals, 2) Total Points, 3) Compulsory Figure Points.

Gold: AUT Herma Planck-Szabo
Silver: USA Beatrix Loughran
Bronze: GBR Ethel Muckelt

Summary

Among the 8 participants, two of them had participated in Antwerp four years earlier, US skater Theresa Weld-Blanchard winning a bronze medal, and the British veteran, now 38-year-old Ethel Muckelt, placing fifth in Antwerp. The heavy favorite was Austrian Herma Planck-Szabo, world champion in 1922 and 1923. Among the entrants was an 11-year old Norwegian girl, Sonja Henie. Originally the Norwegians had decided not to enter any figure skaters for Chamonix, but when Sonja’s father Wilhelm Henie, a wealthy furrier, offered to pay all the expenses for Sonja and himself as her coach, the Norwegian authorities reluctantly gave in.

Herma Planck-Szabo won with ease. She was definitely the figure skating queen of the 1920s, winning five world championships in a row (1922-1926). She was also an excellent pair skater, together with her partner Ludwig Wrede she was world champion in the event in 1925 and 1927, in addition to a silver medal in 1926. In the World Championships in Oslo 1927 she would have to be satisfied with a silver medal, beaten by the new rising star, Sonja Henie. Of the five judges, three from Norway had Henie as the winner, the two others, from Germany and Austria, had the Austrian ranked first. After that, the International Skating Union decided that in future championships, there would be only one judge from each country. Planck-Szabo retired from active skating after the 1927 season. She is said to be the first figure skater to wear short skirts during competition.

Beatrix Loughran, second after Weld-Blanchard in the US Championships 1922 and 1923, won the silver, and Muckelt won the bronze medal by a scant margin behind Weld-Blanchard. Ethel Muckelt participated as a pair skater in the 1928 games, at age 42. Sonja Henie was last in eighth place. It is told that she skated over to the side of the rink several times during her program to ask her father for directions.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal MP TO TP RP
1 Herma Planck-Szabo 21 Austria AUT Gold 7×1+ 7.0 2,094.25 299.18
2 Beatrix Loughran 23 United States USA Silver 7×2+ 14.0 1,959.00 279.86
3 Ethel Muckelt 38 Great Britain GBR Bronze 6×4+ 26.0 1,750.50 250.07
4 Theresa Weld-Blanchard 30 United States USA 5×4+ 27.0 1,746.75 249.54
5 Andrée Brunet-Joly 22 France FRA 5×6+ 38.0 1,623.50 231.93
6 Cecil Smith 15 Canada CAN 4×6+ 44.0 1,615.25 230.75
7 Kathleen Shaw 21 Great Britain GBR 5×7+ 46.0 1,547.00 221.00
8 Sonja Henie 11 Norway NOR 7×8+ 50.0 1,426.75 203.82