After her mother died when she was thirteen, Oksana Baiul grew up alone, until she was taken in by figure skating coach Galina Zmiyevskaya. Just two years later, she made an impressive début on the international figure skating scene. In her rookie year, she won the Ukranian title, placed second at the European Championships, and grabbed a surprise world title in Prague. At the Winter Olympics, a year later, she found herself in a media circus surrounding the women’s figure skating. With Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan very much in the spotlight, the World Champion was nearly forgotten. However, in a very close contest, she edged out Kerrigan, winning the Ukraine’s first ever Olympic gold medal. The sixteen-year-old Baiul then negotiated a professional contract in the United States, ending her competitive skating career after just two seasons. She has since appeared in various ice shows, television programs and movies. She made the news in 1997, after driving under the influence and crashing her car into a tree.