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Cross Country Skiing at the 1984 Sarajevo Winter Games:

Women's 20 kilometres

Cross Country Skiing at the 1984 Winter Games: Next Winter Games

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Host City: Sarajevo, Yugoslavia
Venue(s): Veliko Polje, Igman
Date Started: February 18, 1984
Date Finished: February 18, 1984

Gold: FIN Marja-Liisa Kirvesniemi-Hämäläinen
Silver: URS Raisa Smetanina
Bronze: NOR Anne Jahren

Summary

The 20 km cross country for ladies was a new event on the Olympic program, but had been contested twice at the World Championships. Raisa Smetanina was the reigning World Champion, and also won silver at the inaugural event in 1978. The big question was if Marja-Liisa Hämälainen could win a clean sweep and take her third individual gold medal in Sarajevo. The 27-year old Finn, nicknamed the “Iron Maiden” by the Norwegian press, started in a controlled way, lying third at 3.5 km, 6.6 seconds behind the leader, Smetanina, but only 0.1 seconds behind Brit Pettersen from Norway, who was second. But Hämälainen soon took control of the race. At the halfway point, she was 13 seconds ahead of her Soviet rival, with Pettersen further behind but still in third place. At 13.5 km Smetanina was still in contention, only 12 seconds behind. Moving up from seventh to third was Czechoslovakia’s Blanka Paulů, but too far behind the leaders to fight for the gold medal. Norway’s Anne Jahren was five seconds behind Paulů, closely followed by Marie Risby, Lyubov Lyadova and Pettersen, all about ten seconds from the bronze medal position.

Jahren, with start number 4, took the early lead at the finish, and Lyadova, Paulů and Risby failed to beat Jahren’s final time, the Czech skiier finishing just three seconds back. Then Hämälainen finished strongly as usual, having beaten Jahren by half a minute over the last 6.5 km. Smetanina could not respond to Hämälainen’s finish, and won her second silver medal at the Sarajevo Games, beaten by over 40 seconds.

Marja-Liisa Hämälainen had made it, winning all three individual distances in the 1984 games. She had participated both in the 1976 and 1980 games without success, finishing 18th at 10 km in 1980 as her previous Olympic best. Now she was definitely the cross-country queen of the 1984 games. Later in 1984 she married her teammate Harri Kirvesniemi, and, under her new family name, participated in three more Winter Olympic Games, being the first woman to participate at six Winter Olympics.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T I1T I1R I2T I2R I3T I3R
1 Marja-Liisa Kirvesniemi-Hämäläinen 28 Finland FIN Gold 1-01:45.0 12:35.7 3 30:37.9 1 43:27.1 1
2 Raisa Smetanina 31 Soviet Union URS Silver 1-02:26.7 12:29.1 1 30:50.9 2 43:39.4 2
3 Anne Jahren 20 Norway NOR Bronze 1-03:13.6 12:40.3 6 31:17.4 4 44:23.7 4
4 Blanka Paulů 29 Czechoslovakia TCH 1-03:16.9 12:38.8 4 31:29.1 7 44:18.4 3
5 Marie Johansson-Risby 28 Sweden SWE 1-03:31.8 12:42.0 7 31:18.6 5 44:25.0 5
6 Brit Pettersen 22 Norway NOR 1-03:49.0 12:35.6 2 31:11.1 3 44:29.5 7
7 Lyubov Lyadova 31 Soviet Union URS 1-03:53.3 12:39.2 5 31:25.7 6 44:28.7 6
8 Evi Kratzer 23 Switzerland SUI 1-03:56.4 12:53.2 10 31:50.7 8 44:55.5 8
9 Pirkko Määttä 24 Finland FIN 1-04:37.6 13:04.6 15 32:04.3 10 45:20.8 10
10 Guidina Dal Sasso 26 Italy ITA 1-04:44.1 13:04.7 16 32:01.2 9 45:28.5 11
11 Inger Helene Nybråten 23 Norway NOR 1-04:51.2 12:51.5 9 32:04.4 11 45:08.9 9
12 Květa Jeriová 27 Czechoslovakia TCH 1-04:56.2 12:45.5 8 32:05.9 12 45:29.1 12
13 Tamara Markashanskaya 29 Soviet Union URS 1-05:01.7 12:58.0 12 32:16.6 14 45:38.6 13
14 Marit Myrmæl 30 Norway NOR 1-05:01.9 13:05.9 18 32:18.0 15 45:41.1 14
15 Yuliya Stepanova 21 Soviet Union URS 1-05:33.4 12:55.2 11 32:11.6 13 45:45.0 15
16 Anna Pasiarová 34 Czechoslovakia TCH 1-05:35.7 13:10.2 20 32:41.1 20 46:20.5 19
17 Eija Hyytiäinen 23 Finland FIN 1-05:38.8 13:05.3 17 32:18.2 16 45:51.3 16
18 Ute Noack 22 East Germany GDR 1-05:43.5 12:59.6 13 32:19.0 17 46:00.4 17
19 Karin Jäger 22 West Germany FRG 1-06:20.2 13:00.1 14 32:26.5 18 46:05.8 18
20 Petra Rohrmann 21 East Germany GDR 1-06:30.0 13:22.0 27 33:00.9 26 46:39.2 23
21 Sharon Firth 30 Canada CAN 1-06:31.0 13:09.9 19 32:30.1 19 46:21.3 20
22 Karin Thomas 22 Switzerland SUI 1-06:36.1 13:22.6 28 32:53.2 23 46:35.5 22
23 Ann Rosendahl 24 Sweden SWE 1-06:47.8 13:20.7 26 33:08.3 28 46:52.6 25
24 Viera Klimková 26 Czechoslovakia TCH 1-06:59.9 13:15.3 22 32:57.0 25 46:48.8 24
25 Shirley Firth 30 Canada CAN 1-07:02.5 13:10.7 21 32:43.1 21 46:29.9 21
26 Manuela Di Centa 21 Italy ITA 1-07:10.5 13:16.1 24 32:56.8 24 46:58.4 26
27 Judy Rabinowitz 25 United States USA 1-07:11.4 13:17.1 25 32:46.6 22 46:59.3 27
28 Susan Long 23 United States USA 1-07:25.9 13:15.8 23 33:06.1 27 47:17.8 29
29 Erja Kuivalainen 19 Finland FIN 1-07:26.4 13:26.9 29 33:23.8 30 47:26.8 31
30 Carola Anding 23 East Germany GDR 1-07:27.8 13:31.2 32 33:23.2 29 47:22.2 30
31 Kristina Hugosson 20 Sweden SWE 1-07:40.5 13:27.3 30 33:45.5 33 47:15.2 28
32 Stina Karlsson 22 Sweden SWE 1-07:43.4 13:34.7 33 33:40.4 32 47:38.8 32
33 Lynn von der Heide-Spencer-Galanes 29 United States USA 1-08:25.0 13:27.6 31 33:31.2 31 47:57.3 33
34 Monika Germann 29 Switzerland SUI 1-08:25.5 13:50.4 34 34:10.2 34 48:19.6 34
35 Germana Sperotto 20 Italy ITA 1-10:24.1 14:00.8 35 34:53.4 35 49:24.8 35
36 Ros Coats 34 Great Britain GBR 1-11:24.1 14:21.4 37 34:58.3 36 49:58.4 36
37 Kelly Milligan 22 United States USA 1-11:50.4 14:04.9 36 35:21.5 37 50:19.5 37
38 Metka Munih 24 Yugoslavia YUG 1-13:35.8 14:31.9 38 35:43.6 38 51:29.9 38
39 Nicola Lavery 23 Great Britain GBR 1-16:24.0 15:12.1 39 37:45.1 39 53:35.7 39
AC Angela Schmidt-Foster 24 Canada CAN DNF