Figure Skaters in Singles and Pairs

In our Figure Skating Factsheets we gave a list of the Olympic figure skaters who have competed in both singles and pairs at the same Olympic Winter Games, since World War II.

In that list we noted that it used to be much more but it has been done only 12 times since 1948, and only three times since 1972, the last by Australian Stephen Carr in 1994. It has not been done by a woman since West German Tina Riegel in 1980, and prior to that, the last women did it in 1952

But prior to World War II it did occur a bit more often. In all it has been achieved 44 times, 19 by women and 25 by men. Here is the entire list of figure skaters who have competed in singles and pairs at the same Olympic Winter Games, all-time.

Year     Gdr   Name                                                 NOC     ###

1908     F       Madge Syers                                  GBR       1

1920     F       Theresa Weld-Blanchard       USA       1

1920     F       Phyllis Johnson                            GBR       1

1924     F       Theresa Weld-Blanchard       USA      2

1924     F       Andrée Brunet-Joly                   FRA       1

1924     F       Ethel Muckelt                                GBR       1

1924     F       Cecil Smith                                      CAN      1

1928     F       Elvira Barbey                                 SUI         1

1928     F       Theresa Weld-Blanchard       USA       3

1928     F       Melitta Brunner                           AUT      1

1928     F       Andrée Brunet-Joly                   FRA       2

1928     F       Beatrix Loughran                         USA      1

1932     F       Constance Wilson-Samuel     CAN     1

1936     F       Maribel Vinson                              USA      1

1948     F       Grazia Barcellona                         ITA        1

1948     F       Suzi Morrow                                   CAN      1

1948     F       Yvonne Sherman                          USA      1

1952     F       Sissy Schwarz                                 AUT      1

1980     F       Tina Riegel                                       FRG      1

1920     M      MacDonald Beaumont             GBR      1

1920     M      Nathaniel Niles                             USA      1

1920     M      Basil Williams                                GBR      1

1924     M      Pierre Brunet                                 FRA      1

1924     M      Nathaniel Niles                             USA      2

1924     M      Jack Page                                          GBR     1

1924     M      Melville Rogers                             CAN     1

1928     M      Sherwin Badger                             USA     1

1928     M      Pierre Brunet                                  FRA     2

1928     M      Jack Eastwood                               CAN    1

1928     M      Nathaniel Niles                             USA      3

1928     M      Jack Page                                          GBR     2

1928     M      Robert Van Zeebroeck             BEL      1

1928     M      Ludwig Wrede                               AUT     1

1932     M      Bud Wilson                                      CAN    1

1936     M      Ernst Baier                                       GER     1

1936     M      George Hill                                      USA     1

1948     M      Wallace Diestelmeyer              CAN    1

1948     M      Carlo Fassi                                       ITA       1

1948     M      Ede Király                                        HUN     1

1948     M      Helmut Seibt                                 AUT      1

1952     M      Kurt Oppelt                                   AUT      1

1972     M      Ken Shelley                                    USA      1

1994     M      Stephen Carr                                 AUS      1

It has never happened that an ice dancer has competed in singles at the Winter Olympics. If we suspect the above combination of singles / pairs may never happen again, I’ll state categorically that no figure skater will ever compete in singles and dance at the Olympics – the dancers don’t do enough jumps.

In the above list two skaters did this 3 times and they were partners – Nathaniel Niles and Theresa Weld-Blanchard skated pairs at the 1920/1924/1928 Winter Olympics, and both also competed in singles at those Olympics. This was also done twice by the husband/wife team of Pierre Brunet and Andrée Brunet Joly at the 1924 and 1928 Winter Olympics.

Finally British skater Jack Page did this twice as well in 1924 and 1928, skating both times with Ethel Muckelt. Muckelt competed in singles in 1924 but not in 1928.

A most unusual scenario, however, has occurred more recently in the case of Japanese-American figure skater Rena Inoue. Born in Japan, Inoue competed in both singles and pairs in her native country. She skated pairs at the 1992 Winter Olympics alongside Tomoaki Koyama, placing 14th. Inoue then returned to the Olympics at Lillehammer in 1994, but competed in singles, finishing 18th. She moved to the United States in 1996 at her father’s urging after he had been diagnosed with lung cancer. Inoue herself developed cancer in 1998 but it was cured by chemotherapy and she returned to figure skating in 2000. In 2006, by then skating with John Baldwin, Inoue competed in her third Olympics, again in pairs, and they finished 7th. Baldwin and Inoue became engaged in 2008 and later married.

Don’t look to see anything like this happening in Sochi. But hey, they gave the singles skaters a team trophy for 2014 so they’ll have something else to do.

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