History of Ice Racing
Australian Short Track successes at the Olympic Winter Games
Extracted from David Morgan's brief history:
In 1988, the Short Track discipline was introduced at the Calgary Winter Olympics
as a demonstration sport, and in 1992, it became a full Olympic event.
At the Salt Lake City Games in 2002, Steven Bradbury won
Australiaís first ever Gold Medal at a Winter Olympics, when he survived
a series of falls by other competitors in the final, to become the last man
standing and winning the 1000 metres Gold Medal.
Click here to see the video of Steven Bradbury winning GOLD.
At the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics, Australian won its first ever medal at Winter
Olympics, when our menís Relay team won the Bronze medal in the 5000 metre Relay
event. The Team Coach was Maggie Holland, who is currently our NSW State Coach.
Our First Winter Olympian
Our first Winter Olympian was a Speed Skater, Kenneth George
Kennedy, from Sydney.
Kennedy represented Australia at the 1936 Winter Olympics held at Garmisch-Partenkirchen
in Germany. He competed in the British Indoor Speed Skating
Championships in England in 1935, winning the quarter and half mile titles, establishing new record
times while doing so.
At that time, international Speed Skating was under the rules of what is known as "Long Track" which required a very different technique to the "Short Track" Kennedy was used to.
Also, all the Olympic Skating sports were contested on outdoor naturally frozen
ice where air temperatures are much lower than inside an artificial rink and the ice is not smooth.
There were 52 competitors at the 1936 Games, and Kennedyís results
were 29th in the 500 metres, 33rd in the 1500 metres and 33rd in the 5000 metres.
They were very creditable results, given the handicaps Kennedy had to overcome.
Download and read more about those days in David Morgan's brief history. Download and print [pdf 74 kb]