Host City: Squaw Valley, United States
Venue(s): Speed Skating Oval, Squaw Valley, California
Date Started: February 23, 1960
Date Finished: February 23, 1960
The world record was 5:13.8, set in 1953 at Medeo by Soviet Rimma Zhukova. At the recent World Championships, the distance had been won by [Lidiya Skoblikova] (URS-1960), [Eevi Huttunen] (FIN-1959), and Inga Artamanova (URS-1958). Skoblikova had already won the 1,500 metres in Squaw Valley. The other two Soviet skaters in the event, who had to be considered as no non-Soviet woman had been on the all-around podium at the World Championships since 1952, were [Tamara Rylova] and [Valentina Stenina], wife of top men's skater, [Boris Stenin]. Stenina had recently won the 1960 World Championships in all-around, and had been second at this distance.
Twenty skaters came to the mark. Rylova was in the third pair and took the lead, but her time of 5:30.0 would place her only ninth. The next favorite to skate was Stenina in the seventh pair. Her time of 5:16.9 was considered fast, and put her into a comfortable lead. Huttunen was up two pairs later, and although she was ahead of Stenina's pace through 2,200 metres, she struggled on the final laps, finishing in 5:21.0. Skoblikova was in the last pair, the 10th, but the day was cold, and the ice was still good. She led throughout, finishing in 5:14.3, the second fastest time ever. It was her second gold medal of the 1960 Winter Olympics, and four years later in Innsbruck, she would win all four women's races.
|1||Lidiya Skoblikova||20||Soviet Union||URS||Gold||5:14.3||1:00||1:41||2:22||3:05||3:47||4:31||22||OR|
|2||Valentina Stenina||25||Soviet Union||URS||Silver||5:16.9||1:01||1:43||2:26||3:08||3:51||4:34||22||OR|
|8||Jeanne Ashworth||21||United States||USA||5:28.5||1:03||1:44||2:27||3:11||3:57||4:43|
|9||Tamara Rylova||28||Soviet Union||URS||5:30.0||1:03||1:46||2:28||3:12||3:58||4:44||23||OR|
|18||Cornelia Harrington||16||United States||USA||5:57.5||1:10||1:58||2:44||3:31||4:20||5:11|
|19||Beverly Buhr||18||United States||USA||6:03.1||1:08||1:53||2:38||3:27||4:20||5:13|
|20||Kim Gyeong-Hoe||19||South Korea||KOR||6:08.2||1:05||1:50||2:39||3:31||4:23||5:15|