Yvonne van Gennip was the best female Dutch speed skater of the 1980s, although she did not win many titles, hampered by injuries or formidable opponents from East Germany. But at the 1988 Olympics, she was by far the best, winning three gold medals. She had long been a talent, being runner-up at the European Championships in 1985-1987, and third at the 1987 World Championships. In 1987, she set world records in the 3000 and 5000 m. But while preparing for the Calgary Olympics, she suffered from several injuries, diminishing public expectations for the Games. In the indoor, high-altitude rink at Calgary, she broke her own records in the 3000 and 5000, beating the favored East German skaters Kania, Ehrig and Zange. Yvonne van Gennip never matched her Olympic success of 1988, placing 2nd (1988) and 3rd (1989) at the next two World Championships. After a brief absence, she returned for the Albertville Olympics, but could not do better than 6th in the 3000 m. She ended her career with 13 Dutch titles (2x allround, 2x sprint, 3x 1500 m, 3x 3000 m, 3x 5000 m) and 10 wins in World Cup races.
Personal Bests: 500 – 41.54 (1987); 1000 – 1:21.21 (1989); 1500 – 2:00.68 (1988); 3000 – 4:11.94 (1988); 5000 – 7:14.13 (1988).