Host City: Innsbruck, Austria
Venue(s): Olympic Ice Stadium, Innsbruck
Date Started: January 30, 1964
Date Finished: February 2, 1964
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, with the tiebreaker for each judge being Compulsory Figure Points. 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. Ties broken by a Subsequent Majority rule, i.e., if the pairs were ranked for the same position by the same number of judges, Majority Placement for the next higher position for each pair determined who was ranked higher. The tiebreakers were, in order: 1) Number of Majority Placements, 2) Total Ordinals of Majority, 3) Total Ordinals, 2) Total Points, 3) Compulsory Figure Points.
The gold medal in 1956 and 1960 had been won by Americans Tenley Albright and Carol Heiss. The American heir apparent seemed to be youthful Laurie Owen, who won the 1961 US and North American Championship after placing sixth at the 1960 Olympics. But Owen was killed in the plane crash that took the lives of the entire US figure skating team travelling to the 1961 World Championships. In 1962, Barbara Ann Roles, bronze medalist in 1960 who had retired after Squaw Valley, came out of retirement to help support the US figure skating program. But she skated only one year and the US women’s program would be led by several very young skaters.
Sjoukje Dijkstra (NED) had been silver medalist behind Heiss at Squaw Valley. Even with Owen around, she would have been formidable in Innsbruck. She had won the World Championship in 1962-63, had been favored in 1961 prior to the American plane crash, and was European Champion from 1961-64. She won the gold medal in 1964 easily. She led the compulsory figures, ranking first on eight of nine judges’ cards, with one judge placing her equal first. Dijkstra then won the free skating, again ranked first by eight of nine judges. Overall, she was placed first by all judges. Behind her the silver medal went to Austria’s Regine Heitzer, with a narrow margin over Canada’s Petra Burka. The three young US women placed 6-7-8, led by Peggy Fleming in sixth. Much more would soon be heard of her.
Figure skating was barely known in the Netherlands prior to Dijkstra's ascendance to the top levels of the sport. Her father was former Olympic speed skater, Lou Dijkstra, who had her train abroad with foreign coaches, notably 1948 men’s silver medalist Hans Gerschwiler. She was quite popular in the Netherlands and the Dutch Royal Family was in attendance to watch her win the gold medal. After the Olympics she joined the professional ice show, Holiday on Ice.
|6||Peggy Fleming||15||United States||USA||6×6+||33.0||59.0||1,819.6|
|7||Christine Haigler||16||United States||USA||5×7+||34.0||74.0||1,803.8|
|8||Tina Noyes||15||United States||USA||6×9+||43.0||73.0||1,798.9|
|11||Sally-Anne Stapleford||18||Great Britain||GBR||5×11+||47.0||108.0||1,757.9|
|16||Carol-Ann Warner||18||Great Britain||GBR||5×17+||73.0||162.0||1,692.9|
|18||Diana Clifton-Peach||19||Great Britain||GBR||5×18+||72.0||152.0||1,711.7|
|28||Anne Karin Dehle||21||Norway||NOR||8×28+||219.0||248.0||1,571.9|
|30||Berit Unn Johansen||16||Norway||NOR||9×30+||265.0||265.0||1,524.9|