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Speed Skating at the 1968 Grenoble Winter Games:

Women's 500 metres

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Host City: Grenoble, France
Venue(s): Speed Skating Rink, Grenoble
Date Started: February 9, 1968
Date Finished: February 9, 1968

Gold: URS Lyudmila Titova
Silver: USA Jenny Fish
USA Dianne Holum
USA Mary Meyers


There was no clear favorite as Lidiya Skoblikova, who won all four events at Innsbruck, was now skating only the distance events in Grenoble. Only six days before this event started, Soviet skater Tatyana Sidorova broke the world record at Davos with a time of 44.7. Also highly considered was her teammate, Lyudmila Titova, who had won the 500 and 1,000 at the recent 1968 World Championships. In the second pair, American Mary Meyers took the lead with 46.3. Meyers was not unknown, having competed at the 1966 and 1967 World Championships, but the time was not expected to hold up. But nobody beat it until Titova went off in the ninth pair and finished in 46.1 to take the lead. In the next pair, American Dianne Holum was considered a challenger, having placed second in the 500 at the 1967 and 1968 World Championships. She skated well and tied Meyers' time. The final American was Jenny Fish, who went off in the last pair. Relatively unknown, she surprised with 46.3, giving the United States a three-way tie for the silver medals, as Titova held on for the gold. Over the next few years, Titova would establish herself as the best sprinter in the world, winning the inaugural World Sprint Championships in 1971 and multiple distance races over 500 and 1,000 metres at major internationals. In 1972 she would win a bronze medal in the 500 at the Sapporo Olympics.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T
1 Lyudmila Titova 21 Soviet Union URS Gold 46.1
2T Jenny Fish 18 United States USA Silver 46.3
2T Dianne Holum 16 United States USA Silver 46.3
2T Mary Meyers 21 United States USA Silver 46.3
5 Ellie van den Brom 18 Netherlands NED 46.6
6T Kaija Mustonen 26 Finland FIN 46.7
6T Sigrid Sundby-Dybedahl 25 Norway NOR 46.7
8 Kirsti Biermann 17 Norway NOR 46.8
9T Irina Yegorova 27 Soviet Union URS 46.9
9T Tatyana Sidorova 31 Soviet Union URS 46.9
11 Lisbeth Korsmo-Berg 20 Norway NOR 47.0
12T Arja Kantola 18 Finland FIN 47.4
12T Evi Sappl 20 West Germany FRG 47.4
14 Stien Baas-Kaiser 29 Netherlands NED 47.6
15 Christina Lindblom-Scherling 27 Sweden SWE 47.7
16T Wil Burgmeijer 20 Netherlands NED 47.8
16T Ruth Budzisch-Schleiermacher 18 East Germany GDR 47.8
18 Kaija-Liisa Keskivitikka 22 Finland FIN 48.1
19T Marie-Louise Perrenoud 20 France FRA 48.2
19T Wendy Thompson 22 Canada CAN 48.2
21 Hildegard Sellhuber 17 West Germany FRG 48.4
22 Martine Ivangine 20 France FRA 48.5
23 Marcia Parsons 19 Canada CAN 48.8
24 Doreen McCannell 20 Canada CAN 49.0
25 Misae Takeda 24 Japan JPN 49.4
26 Ylva Hedlund 18 Sweden SWE 49.9
27 Kaname Ide 20 Japan JPN 50.0
AC Sachiko Saito 21 Japan JPN DNF