Hjallis Andersen of Norway became one of the few men to win three speedskating gold medals at one Olympic Winter Games, when, in 1952, he triumphed in the three long races (1,500 metres, 5,000 metres, 10,000 metres) in front of a home crowd. His winning margin in the 5,000 metres was an astounding 11 seconds and he also won the 10,000 metres by a substantial margin. His Olympic speed skating career began with a rather inauspicious début, as he failed to finish the 10,000 metres in 1948, the only event in which he competed that year. He retired after the 1952 Games but returned to competition in 1954 to win his fourth Norwegian title, having earlier won the World, European and Norwegian all-around titles in 1950-52. Andersen competed at the 1956 Olympic Games, finishing 11th in the 5,000 and 6th in 10,000, but then retired for good. His strength was as a distance skater, and he won the 5,000 metres and 10,000 metres at the World Championships from 1950-52 consecutively. He set one world record at 5,000 metres and three at 10,000 metres, becoming the first skater to beat 17 minutes over 10 km in 1949. Also a good cyclist, Andersen was awarded the 1951 Egebergs Ærespris for accomplishments in multiple sports. Andersen died at the age of 90, following a serious fall in his home.
Personal Bests: 500 – 43.7 (1951); 1500 – 2:16.4 (1949); 5000 – 8:06.5 (1956); 10000 – 16:32.6 (1952).