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FRASER Gretchen

Gretchen FRASER

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Fraser qualified for the U.S. Olympic team in 1940, but those Games were cancelled because of war. During World War II, she taught skiing to soldiers who had lost limbs...Next to her sportive exploits Gretchen Fraser acted as a skiing double for Sonja Henie in the films Thin Ice (1937) and Sun Valley Serenade (1941).

First gold medal for an American skier

By the time the Olympic Games were revived in 1948, Fraser, at age 28, was not considered well known. Competing in the slalom, she recorded the fastest time of the first run. As she prepared to lead off the second round, a problem developed in the telephone timing system between the top and the bottom of the hill. Despite a 17-minute delay at such a critical time, Fraser skied the second fastest time of the run and, based on her accumulated time, earned the gold medal: the first ever by an American skier. She also won the silver medal in alpine combined.



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Saint-Moritz 1948-FRAZER Gretchen (USA) 1st, MEYER Antoinette (SUI) 2nd and MAHRINGER Erika (AUT) 3rd.
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Saint-Moritz 1948-FRAZER Gretchen (USA) 1st.
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Saint-Moritz 1948-FRAZER Gretchen (USA) 1st in the special slalom event
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Portrait Of Gretchen Fraser

American skier Gretchen Fraser (1919 - 1994) holds a pair of skis as she poses for a portrait during the V Winter Olympic Games, February 1948, St. Moritz, Switzerland. Fraser won the gold in the women's slalom to be America's first Winter gold-medalist at the Olympics. She also won silver in the alpine combined. (Photo by FPG/Getty Images)
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Saint Moritz 1948-FRAZER Gretchen (USA), 1st slalom, 2nd alpine combined.
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Saint Moritz 1948-Slalom-FRAZER Gretchen (USA) 1st.


  • Games
  • S 6.95
    alpine combined women
    G 1:57.2 .
    slalom women

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