Heather Richardson is one of the top American female speed skaters. Richardson skated three different events at the 2010 Olympics but failed to win a medal in any. That might change in Sochi if her 2012-2013 season is any indication. Richardson finished first overall in the World Cup 1000m distance and won the World Sprint Championships during the 2012-2013 season. The middle distance specialist is friends with fellow American speed skater Brittany Bowe, who is her main competition in the middle distances. She had a successful 2013-2014 World Cup season that included gold medals in three of the four 1000m skates. She shined at U.S. Olympic Trials, where she won the 500m, 1000m and 1500m skates. The North Carolina native qualified for the Olympic team in all three distances and carried that momentum in to World Sprint Championships, where she finished third overall for the women.
- 2013/14 Olympic Trials- finished first in the 500m, 1000m and 1500m
- 2013/14 World Cup Salt Lake City- bronze and silver in the two 500m races, silver in the 1000m, bronze in the 1500m and bronze in team pursuit
- 2013 World Cup Calgary- gold in the 1000m
- 2013 World Cup- first in the overall standings in 1000m
- 2013 World Sprint Championships- overall champion
- 2010 Olympics Games- ninth in the 1000m and 16th in the 500m and 1500m
Things to know:
1. Richardson is engaged to Dutch speed skater Jorrit Bergsma
2. Has several tattoos: “Family” on her right wrist, the Pisces symbol on each foot, and “Hope” written in purple ribbon for her grandmother who had cancer.
3. Richardson's hometown in North Carolina is less than 20 miles from the birthplace of Joey Cheek, an American speed skater and Olympic medalist that Richardson always admired.