| Event type

10 kilometres, Women

Date18 February 1980 — 9:00
LocationMt. Van Hoevenberg Recreation Area, Lake Placid (Cross Country Complex)
Participants38 from 12 countries
DetailsCourse Length: ?
Height Differential: 124 m
Intermediate 1: 5.0 km
Maximum Climb: 44 m
Total Climbing: 282 m

All the medalists from the 1976 Games were present, and among the favorites were the defending champion Raisa Smetanina, silver medalist Helena Takalo and the 1976 bronze medalist, the dominant female cross-country skier during the 1970s, Galina Kulakova, now aged 37 and making her last individual Olympic appearance. The reigning World Champion at the distance, Zinaida Amosova, was not present, however, failing to qualify for the Soviet Olympic team.

At the halfway point, East Germany’s Barbara Petzold had taken the lead, almost 14 seconds ahead of Smetanina, with the other favorites closely following: the silver medalist from the 5 km race Hilkka Riihivuori in third, only 0.3 seconds behind Smetanina, then Takalo in fourth, another 1.9 seconds behind, and Kulakova in fifth place, 6 seconds behind Takalo. Kulakova was the first of the favorites to finish, but Takalo, starting half a minute behind, immediately took over the lead, finishing 13 seconds ahead of the Soviet veteran. Then everybody’s eyes were on the 24-year old leader Petzold. She finished 14 seconds stronger than Takalo, and Riihivuori, chasing Petzold from behind, arriving 3.5 seconds too late to beat the leading German woman. The final challenger was Smetanina, the winner of the 5 km race three days earlier. To everybody’s surprise she faded in the last part of the race and dropped down to fourth, outside the medal podium, 9 seconds behind Takalo.

Even if Petzold’s victory was a minor surprise, she had earlier shown great promise on the cross-country track. In 1974, at only 18-years-old, she won the silver medal at 10 km at the World Championships in Falun. In the 1976 Games she placed seventh at the distance, but her later progress was hampered by overtraining. She became the first ever German to win an Olympic cross-country gold medal.

PosNrSkierNOCTimeInt 1 (Pos)
133Barbara PetzoldGDR30:31.5416:29.10 (1)Gold
234Hilkka RiihivuoriFIN30:35.0516:43.26 (3)Silver
325Helena TakaloFIN30:45.2516:45.10 (4)Bronze
438Raisa SmetaninaURS30:54.4816:42.97 (2)
524Galina KulakovaURS30:58.4616:51.58 (5)
614Nina BaldychevaURS31:22.9317:03.54 (7)
715Marlies RostockGDR31:28.7917:08.43 (9)
823Veronika HesseGDR31:29.1417:07.83 (8)
937Květa JeriováTCH31:29.5517:15.69 (13)
1011Eva OlssonSWE31:36.0817:03.34 (6)
1130Lena Carlzon-LundbäckSWE31:45.5017:12.47 (11)
121Carola AndingGDR31:45.8217:15.59 (12)
1320Berit AunliNOR31:46.1117:11.08 (10)
144Iraida SuslovaURS31:48.3917:19.00 (15)
1519Marie JohanssonSWE31:48.5717:16.32 (14)
1627Dagmar PalečkováTCH32:03.3217:19.40 (16)
175Karin LambergSWE32:10.4417:22.46 (17)
1816Marja-Liisa HämäläinenFIN32:22.8817:34.92 (19)
1912Gabriela SvobodováTCH32:23.0517:39.19 (21)
2018Marit MyrmælNOR32:25.1417:33.45 (18)
2136Susi RiermeierFRG32:37.5717:37.31 (20)
2235Alison Owen-SpencerUSA32:41.3317:41.64 (22)
2317Angela SchmidtCAN32:56.1317:53.35 (26)
2421Shirley FirthCAN32:56.8717:48.34 (23)
2526Beth PaxsonUSA33:01.6017:54.62 (28)
2628Karin JägerFRG33:01.7617:52.77 (25)
2722Evi KratzerSUI33:03.6517:57.95 (29)
2810Leslie BancroftUSA33:04.7117:49.33 (24)
298Blanka PaulůTCH33:08.3118:07.48 (32)
3031Hilde RiisNOR33:08.6817:54.02 (27)
312Lynn SpencerUSA33:13.8918:00.28 (31)
326Ulla MaaskolaFIN33:22.1918:00.03 (30)
333Esther MillerCAN33:29.0318:16.54 (34)
3432Joan GroothuysenCAN33:31.9918:10.83 (33)
3529Colleen BoltonAUS33:56.3218:26.95 (36)
3613Cornelia ThomasSUI33:57.9418:26.83 (35)
377Hege PeikliNOR34:05.0318:33.15 (37)
389Ren GuipingCHN38:23.4520:58.23 (38)