Bonnie Blair Biography, Life, Interesting Facts
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Childhood And Early Life
American speed skater Bonnie Blair was born on the 18 March 1953 in Cornwall, New York to Eleanor and Charlie Blair. She has five siblings. Bonnie Blair was raised in Champaign, Illinois.
She was a pupil at Jefferson Middle School and Centennial High School. When training in Milwaukee, she enrolled at Parkland College but did not graduate.
Rise To Fame
Bonnie Blair won a position on the speed skating Olympic Team when she was 15 years old, and she relocated to Milwaukee to train with the national speed skating team. In 1984 she made her international debut at the World Sprinting Championships and the same year participated in the Olympic Games. She did win short and long track events in 1884, 1985 and 1986. Then in 1986, she was the short-track world champion.
By the late 1980s, Blair was setting records in the 500 meters with a record time of 39.43 seconds. She won a place on the 1988 Olympic team to go to the Games in Calgary, Alberta, Canada where she won gold in the 500 meters, setting a record of 39.10. She also won a bronze medal in the 1,000 meters. After the 1988 Olympics she became interested in track cycle racing and trained with Connie Paraskevin. She was chosen for the speed skating team to compete at the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, France and won gold in the 500 meters as well as the 1,000 meters. In 1996 Blair again won gold in the 500 meters and 1,000 meters becoming the first American in history o have won 6 medals at the Winter Olympics. Back home she continued, setting a new record when she broke her own 500 meters record. She retired from competitive sport in 1995.
Awards And Achievements
Awards Bonnie Blair has received including the Sullivan Award (1992), the Oscar Mathisen Award (1992), Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year (1994) and Sports Illustrated Sportswoman of the Year (1994). Bonnie Blair was inducted into the US Olympic Hall of Fame in 2004 and was presented with a star on The Flag for Hope in 2015.
Bonnie Blair was a torchbearer at the 2002 Utah Olympics held in Salt Lake City (2002). She was also on the board of US Speedskating (2002). She is on various boards and works as a professional motivational speaker.
She married David Cruikshank in 1990, and the couple has two children.