Speed Skating Hall of Fame

Chris Witty

Born: June 23, 1975 - West Allis, Wisconsin (USA)

Chris Witty, born in West Allis, Wisconsin, was the best US speed skater at the 1998 Olympic Games, winning a silver medal in the 1000 m a bronze in the 1500 m. As the current World Record holder she was one of the favourites for the 1000 m gold, but she was beaten by the surprise winner, Dutch Marianne Timmer. Four years later she seemed to be out of shape in the start of the season, and one month before the Olympics she was diagnosed with mononucleosis and was forced to cut back on her training. Still reeling from the effects of the illness, Witty shocked even herself by winning the gold medal in the 1000 m in a new World Record time - 1.13,85.

She became World Sprint Champion 1996, and she has three more medals from the World Sprint Championships. She won the 1000 m in the World Single Distance Championships 1998, and she has two more medals from these championships.

For the last two years before the 2002 Olympics, Witty lived in Park City, and for the last year she was coached by Tom Cushman, an Olympian in the Calgary Games 1988. She was chosen by her teammates to carry the US flag at the opening ceremony in Torino in 2006. She had no success in these games.

Witty was also a great cyclist. She qualified for the Sidney Olympics 2000, where she placed 5th in the 500 m time trial.

Bjarte Hetland, January 28, 2014

Career summary


Podia at championships

yearpositionchampionshipplace
19962 World Championship Single Distances 1000 metersHamarNOR
1 World Championship SprintHeerenveenNED
19973 World Championship SprintHamarNOR
19982 Olympic Winter Games 1000 metersNaganoJPN
3 Olympic Winter Games 1500 metersNaganoJPN
1 World Championship Single Distances 1000 metersCalgaryCAN
3 World Championship SprintBerlinGER
20003 World Championship Single Distances 1000 metersNaganoJPN
2 World Championship SprintSeoulKOR
20021 Olympic Winter Games 1000 metersSalt Lake CityUSA

World Records

#disciplinerecorddateplace
11000 meters1:15.43Nov 23, 1997CalgaryCAN
21000 meters1:14.96Mar 28, 1998CalgaryCAN
31000 meters1:14.58Mar 3, 2001CalgaryCAN
41000 meters1:13.83Feb 17, 2002Salt Lake CityUSA

Personal Bests

distancetimedateplace
500m0:38.36Feb 14, 2002Salt Lake CityUSA
1000m1:13.83Feb 17, 2002Salt Lake CityUSA
1500m1:55.71Feb 20, 2002Salt Lake CityUSA
3000m4:22.57Mar 14, 1998HeerenveenNED
5000m7:38.20Mar 15, 1998HeerenveenNED