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Petra Acker

Speed Skating USA

Petra Acker

Petra Acker
  • Birth date 5/06/1993
  • Birthplace New York, NY
  • Hometown Clifton Park, NY
  • Residence Salt Lake City, UT
  • Height/Weight 6'0"/

Biography

Petra Acker started speed skating to fulfill a physical education requirement. Nine years old and homeschooled at the time, Acker was taught to skate by her grandfather, Howard Ganong, an Olympic hopeful in 1952 who won five national titles in short track in the grand masters (50 years or older) division. The two would race each other across the rink at the end of every session, and after two years of training Acker finally beat her champion grandfather. At the U.S. Olympic Trials for the 2010 Vancouver Games, Acker was the youngest competitor at age 16 but didn’t make the team. She missed out on qualifying for the 2014 Sochi Olympics as well, and the disappointment drove her to stop skating for almost a year. She returned with a renewed passion for the sport and a determination to make her Olympic dream come true in PyeongChang. She competed on the World Cup circuit during the 2016-17 season and made her world championships debut at the 2017 World Single Distance Championships.
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