Gabi Zange-Schönbrunn

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameGabriele "Gabi"•Zange-Schönbrunn
Used nameGabi•Zange-Schönbrunn
Born1 June 1961 in Crimmitschau, Sachsen (GER)
Measurements167 cm / 60 kg
AffiliationsSC Karl-Marx-Stadt, Chemnitz (GER)
NOC East Germany
Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 3
Total 3


While perhaps less successful than her compatriots Karin Kania and Andrea Ehrig, Gabi Zange (born Schönbrunn) did her part to confirm the East German dominance of women’s speed skating in the 1980s. She débuted with a bronze in the 1981 European Championships and bettering the 3,000 m world record at the miracle rink of Medeo (USSR). She earned four 4th places in the international allround tournaments of 1982 and 1983. Gabi Schönbrunn captured the 1984 European title in the absence of Schöne and Enke, but her 5,000 m and allround world records in the event proved it wasn’t a fluke.

At the Sarajevo Olympics, she completed an all-DDR podium in the 3,000 m (behind her great rivals) and placed third in the World Championships. She bettered that rank to second in 1985, but then remained prize-less until the 1987-88 season, her last. She set her fourth world record in the 3,000 m at the test competition for the Calgary Olympics, at which she earned two more Olympic bronzes in the long distances. Zange retired with one, East German title under her belt, the 1985 1,500 m, and became a physiotherapist.

Personal Bests: 500 – 41.93 (1981); 1000 – 1:22.00 (1988); 1500 – 2:04.98 (1988); 3000 – 4:16.76 (1988); 5000 – 7:21.61 (1988).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1984 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) GDR Gabi Schönbrunn
1,500 metres, Women (Olympic) 4
3,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze
1988 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) GDR Gabi Zange
3,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze
5,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze

Special Notes