Host City: Lillehammer, Norway
Venue(s): Olympic Amphitheatre, Hamar
Date Started: February 24, 1994
Date Finished: February 24, 1994
Format: Placements 1-8 based on final and B final. Deeper placements based on points earned in earlier rounds, and time in final round skated.
After her title in 1992, former bar singer [Cathy Turner] had returned to show business, skating in the Ice Capades revue. She was fired soon and picked up the sport again 7 months before the Games. Meanwhile, her rivals had continued normally. China's [Zhang Yanmei] improved the World Record during the 1993 World Championships in Beijing, although the distance was eventually won by the overall World Champion, [Nathalie Lambert].
Turner already had a reputation for being an aggressive skater - "competitive" in her own words - and she displayed this again at the Lillehammer Games. In the quarter-finals, Turner bumped several times into Lambert, sending her into the boards and out of contention. While Lambert named Turner "the dirtiest woman on skates", the American continued unabashedly. She survived a fall in the semis (for which Isabelle Charest was disqualified), and made it into the final. Zhang led the decider with two laps to go, when Turner made a move to pass her. In doing so, she clearly touched the Chinese woman, who claimed Turner had grabbed her. But the referees had not seen anything, and the result was allowed to stand, much to the chagrin of Zhang. Already angered by their disqualification during the relay, she stomped away from the victory ceremony as soon as the U.S. national anthem had finished, throwing away her flowers in anger.
The IOC was not pleased with Zhang's display, for which the Chinese later apologized. However, most of the other skaters seemed to agree with Zhang, as a Belgian proposal to allow referees to see television replays at the upcoming World Championships was quickly signed by all team leaders, except for the Americans. Some opponents took it even further, sending Turner hate mail through the Olympic Village messaging system.
|1||Cathy Turner||31||United States||USA||Gold|
|3||Amy Peterson||22||United States||USA||Bronze|
|4||Won Hye-Gyeong||14||South Korea||KOR|
|5||Kim So-Hui||17||South Korea||KOR|
|7T||Yang Yang (S)||16||China||CHN||9||47.25|
|15||Jeon I-Gyeong||18||South Korea||KOR||4||1:09.56|
|19||Anke Jannie Landman||19||Netherlands||NED||2||48.36|
|25||Debbie Palmer||18||Great Britain||GBR||1||47.93|
|26||Penèlope di Lella||19||Netherlands||NED||1||48.44|
|29||Cindy Meyer||29||South Africa||RSA||1||1:17.18|