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Jeanne Ashworth

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 1
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
SexFemale
Full nameJeanne Chesley•Ashworth (-Walker-)
Used nameJeanne•Ashworth
Nick/petnamesJean
Born1 July 1938 in Burlington, Vermont (USA)
Died4 October 2018 in Wilmington, New York (USA)
Measurements157 cm / 57 kg
AffiliationsLake Placid Speed Skating Club, Lake Placid (USA)
NOC United States

Biography

In the first official Olympic speed skating for women, Jeanne Ashworth finished behind a Helga Haase and Nataliya Donchenko to take the bronze medal. In the late 50s and early 60s, Ashworth and “the other Jeanne”, Omelenchuk, monopolized American speed skating – Ashworth winning 11 national championships and Omelenchuk eight. In the following years, Ashworth trained in Europe, and competed in the 1962 and 1963 World Championships, placing 10th both times (and best American). At the 1964 US Olympic Trials, held in Colorado Springs at 2,865 m above sea level, she won the 500 m in 44.4 which was below the World Record, but her time was not recognised as such. In the Olympics themselves, in Innsbruck, she just missed out on a medal, finishing behind three Soviet skaters.

Jeanne Ashworth was also an excellent softball player, and competed in that sport on a national level. In 1960 she received a B.S. degree in physical therapy from an affiliate school of Tufts. She later settled near Lake Placid, where she helped run the family toy and candy company. When the 1980 Olympics were held there, Ashworth was part of the Organising Committee, and went to Greece to bring the Olympic Flame to Lake Placid. Later, Jeanne Ashworth became Town Supervisor of Wilmington, New York (about 1,000 inhabitants), a function comparable with mayor. She died of pancreatic cancer in 2018.

Personal Best: 500 – 44.4 (1963); 1000 – 1:34.7 (1968); 1500 – 2:30.3 (1968); 3000 – 5:14.0 (1968).

Results

Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1960 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) USA Jeanne Ashworth
500 metres, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze
1,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 8
1,500 metres, Women (Olympic) 11
3,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 8
1964 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) USA Jeanne Ashworth
500 metres, Women (Olympic) =4
1,000 metres, Women (Olympic) =11
3,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 11
1968 Winter Olympics Speed Skating (Skating) USA Jeanne Ashworth
1,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 7
1,500 metres, Women (Olympic) 16
3,000 metres, Women (Olympic) 10