Here is a quick intro to the 1968 ladies figure skating Winter Olympics. The 1968 Winter Olympics were held in Grenoble, France from February 5 to February 18, 1968. The United States were not favored in most contests. Instead the games would mark a turning point for the United States women’s figure skating team.
Coming into the games the United States’ figure skating team was still trying to recover from tragedy. In 1961, en route to the World Championships, the United States figure skating team was killed in a plane crash. The recovery was slow and it took seven years for the Americans to send a contender to the Olympics.
American Peggy Fleming entered the 1968 games the favorite to win the gold medal. Fleming won the world championships in 1966 and 1967. Fleming set the tone early earning first place votes from all judges and won the gold medal. This was the only gold medal won by the United States in Grenoble. It would mark the turning point toward women’s dominance in skating.
After the medal win, Peggy became a media sensation. Much of this was attributed to the television attention given to her during the Olympics. After the Olympics Peggy would star in television shows and tour the nation with the ICE Follies show. She later would become a commentator for figure skating for ABC.
Other competitors from the 1968 women’s figure skating competition of note were Gabriele Seyfert who won the silver medal for East Germany. Hana Maskova of Czechoslovakia won the bronze medal. Fellow American Janet Lynn finished ninth.
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