Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010

Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan

It's the quintessential figure-skating rivalry. How could it not be, what with Tonya Harding's hired hit on Nancy Kerrigan's knee during a practice session for the 1994 U.S. Championships. Kerrigan was forced to withdraw, and Harding won. Both women went on to the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway despite the Olympic Committee's attempt to ban Harding for her involvement in the attack. The tabloid nature of the pair's rivalry made the broadcast of the women's short program in Lillehammer one of the highest-rated TV programs in history. The result: Harding finished eighth and Kerrigan second. Upon further investigation, Harding was stripped of her U.S. title, banned for life from the U.S. Figure Skating Association and received three years probation after pleading guilty to her part in the assault. After the Games, Kerrigan retired.