Figure Skater Tonya Harding: Tarnished Victory

Charges and questions swirl around her, but did Tonya Harding know about the plot to maim her rival?

"I don't see anybody as my top competitors. I see myself as my top competitor. I'm the one I have to beat."

-- Tonya Harding, after winning the 1994 U.S. championship

No one really believes such a practiced sound bite, least of all the skaters themselves. But Tonya Harding is not -- nor has she ever been -- like most skaters. She is neither politic nor polished, sociable nor sophisticated. Instead, she is the bead of raw sweat in a field of dainty perspirers; the asthmatic who heaves uncontrollably while others pant prettily; the pool- playing, drag-racing, trash-talking bad girl of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!