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Tonya Harding

Tonya Harding

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Tonya Maxine Harding is an American figure skating
Figure skating
Figure skating is an Olympic sport in which individuals, pairs, or groups perform spins, jumps, footwork and other intricate and challenging moves on ice skates. Figure skaters compete at various levels from beginner up to the Olympic level , and at local, national, and international competitions...

 champion. In 1991 she won the U.S. Figure Skating Championships and placed second in the World Championships
World Figure Skating Championships
The World Figure Skating Championships is an annual figure skating competition sanctioned by the International Skating Union in which elite figure skaters compete for the title of World Champion...

. She was the second woman, and the first American woman, to complete a triple axel
Axel jump
The Axel is a figure skating jump with a forward take-off. It is named after the Norwegian skater Axel Paulsen, who first performed the jump in 1882. An Axel jump has an extra ½ rotation in the air due to its forward take-off...

 jump in competition. She became notorious after her ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly, conspired with Shawn Eckhardt and Shane Stant to attack her skating competitor Nancy Kerrigan
Nancy Kerrigan
Nancy Ann Kerrigan is a two-time American Olympic figure skating medalist and 1993 U.S. champion.-Early life and skating career:...

 at a practice session during the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.

Early life


Harding was born in Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon
Portland is a city located in the Pacific Northwest, near the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers in the U.S. state of Oregon. As of the 2010 Census, it had a population of 583,776, making it the 29th most populous city in the United States...

, the daughter of LaVona and Al Harding. She had a half-brother, Chris Davison (deceased). Her father had health problems that sometimes made him unable to work. She claims that her mother sexually abused her, a claim her mother denies. She began skating at an early age. She landed her first triple lutz
Lutz jump
The Lutz is a figure skating jump, named after Alois Lutz, an Austrian skater who performed it in 1913. It is a toepick-assisted jump with an entrance from a back outside edge and landing on the back outside edge of the opposite foot.- Lutz technique:...

 at age 12. Her mother made many of her skating costumes.

She stopped attending high school during her sophomore year, and later earned a GED
GED
General Educational Development tests are a group of five subject tests which, when passed, certify that the taker has American or Canadian high school-level academic skills...

 as she started receiving invitations to international skating competitions while she was still in junior high school.

Personal life


She married Jeff Gillooly in 1990, when she was 19 years old. Their tumultuous marriage ended in divorce in 1993, when she was 22. She divorced her second husband Michael Smith in 1995. She married 42-year-old Joseph Jens Price on June 23, 2010. On February 11, 2011, it was announced that she was pregnant with her first child. Harding gave birth to a son at age 40 on February 19, 2011.

Skating career


Harding began working her way up the competitive skating ladder in the mid-1980s, placing sixth at the 1986 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, fifth in 1987 and 1988, and third in 1989. She was considered a strong contender at the 1990 U.S. Figure Skating Championships after having won Skate America
Skate America
Skate America is an international, senior-level figure skating competition held as part of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. It is organized by the United States Figure Skating Association. The location changes yearly...

 1989, but she had a poor free skate as a result of suffering from the flu and asthma
Asthma
Asthma is the common chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by variable and recurring symptoms, reversible airflow obstruction, and bronchospasm. Symptoms include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath...

, and dropped from second place after the original program to finish seventh overall. While she was powerful with her jumps and spins she did not perform well with the compulsory figures.

Harding's breakthrough year was in 1991, where she landed her first triple axel at the U.S. Championships, winning the title with the event's first 6.0 ever given to a single female skater for technical merit. She competed well at the World Championships, but finished second to Kristi Yamaguchi
Kristi Yamaguchi
Kristine Tsuya "Kristi" Yamaguchi-Hedican is an American figure skater. She is the 1992 Olympic Champion in ladies' singles. Yamaguchi also won two World Figure Skating Championships in 1991 and 1992 and a U.S. Figure Skating Championships in 1992. She won one junior world title in 1988 and two...

. She would again complete the triple axel during her long program at the World Championships, becoming the first American woman to do so. In her career, she landed four triple axels in competition (all of them in 1991) where she completed each one she tried: One at the U.S. Championships, another at the World Championships, and two at the Fall 1991 Skate America competition.

At the Fall 1991 Skate America, Harding recorded three more firsts:
  1. The first woman to complete a triple axel in the short program
  2. The first woman to successfully execute two triple axels in a single competition
  3. The first ever to complete a triple axel combination with the double toe loop


Despite her initial record-breaking performances, she was never able to successfully perform the triple axel in a competition after 1991 and her career began to decline as a result. In 1992, she placed third in the U.S. Championships after twisting her ankle in practice. She finished fourth in the 1992 Winter Olympics
1992 Winter Olympics
The 1992 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XVI Olympic Winter Games, were a winter multi-sport event celebrated from 8 to 23 February 1992 in Albertville, France. They were the last Winter Olympics to be held the same year as the Summer Olympics, and the first where the Winter Paralympics...

 and in the 1992 World Championships, she placed sixth in a weak field. The following season, she skated poorly in the 1993 U.S. Championships and failed to qualify for the World Championship team.

Series of incidents


The latter part of her competitive career was marked by a series of blunders, causing television commentators to observe that no competition was complete without Harding having a crisis:
  • Skating magazine reported that at Skate America
    Skate America
    Skate America is an international, senior-level figure skating competition held as part of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. It is organized by the United States Figure Skating Association. The location changes yearly...

     in 1991, she was stranded in heavy traffic just before her event was scheduled to begin and had to hitch a ride with people who drove her backwards through traffic to the arena.
  • Harding arrived so late for the competition at the 1992 Olympic Winter Games that her performance was affected by jet lag.
  • In the short program at the 1993 Nationals
    1993 United States Figure Skating Championships
    The 1993 United States Figure Skating Championships was the United States Figure Skating Championships of the 1992-1993 figure skating season. They were the national championship to determine the national champions of the United States. They were held in Phoenix, Arizona. In addition to determining...

    , she had to ask permission from the referee to restart her program after the back of her dress came unhooked as she began to skate.
  • At the 1993 Skate America
    1993 Skate America
    The 1993 Skate America was the Skate America competition of the 1993–1994 figure skating season. The event was organized by the United States Figure Skating Association. Medals were awarded in the disciplines of men's singles, ladies singles, pair skating, and ice dancing.In 1993, Skate America was...

    , she stopped midway through her free skate and complained to the referee that her skate blade had become loose. She was allowed to resume her program after her blades were checked by a skate technician. In the same event, she claimed to be suffering from an ovarian cyst
    Ovarian cyst
    An ovarian cyst is any collection of fluid, surrounded by a very thin wall, within an ovary. Any ovarian follicle that is larger than about two centimeters is termed an ovarian cyst. An ovarian cyst can be as small as a pea, or larger than an orange....

     that was on the verge of bursting, seriously endangering her health.
  • In late 1993, Harding was scheduled to compete in a regional qualifying competition for the 1994 National Championship
    1994 United States Figure Skating Championships
    The 1994 United States Figure Skating Championships was the United States Figure Skating Championships of the 2009-2010 figure skating season. They were the national championship to determine the national champions of the United States. They were held in Detroit Michigan. In addition to determining...

    . However, before the event, its organizers received an anonymous assassination threat against her, and the United States Figure Skating Association told her to stay away, exempting her from having to qualify.
  • The medal ceremony at the 1994 Championships
    1994 United States Figure Skating Championships
    The 1994 United States Figure Skating Championships was the United States Figure Skating Championships of the 2009-2010 figure skating season. They were the national championship to determine the national champions of the United States. They were held in Detroit Michigan. In addition to determining...

     had to be delayed because she could not be found backstage after the competition.
  • During the 1994 Winter Olympics
    1994 Winter Olympics
    The 1994 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XVII Olympic Winter Games, was a winter multi-sport event celebrated from 12 to 27 February 1994 in and around Lillehammer, Norway. Lillehammer failed to win the bid for the 1992 event. Lillehammer was awarded the games in 1988, after having beat...

    , she almost failed to appear on the ice when her name was called for the free skating because she was scrambling to replace a broken skate lace. The replacement turned out to be too short to fully lace up the skate, and after missing the opening jump in her program she again had to ask the referee for permission to find a new lace.


In addition to the incidents listed above, Harding went through a series of coaching changes, at one point even attempting to coach herself. In spite of the publicity she received about being handicapped by asthma, she also periodically smoked.

Attack on Nancy Kerrigan



Harding became notorious in conjunction with the January 6, 1994 attack on her competitor Nancy Kerrigan
Nancy Kerrigan
Nancy Ann Kerrigan is a two-time American Olympic figure skating medalist and 1993 U.S. champion.-Early life and skating career:...

. The widely publicized attack took place during a practice session for the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit. Her ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly, and her bodyguard, Shawn Eckhardt, hired Shane Stant to break Kerrigan's right leg so that she would be unable to skate. He followed her to Detroit after failing to find her at her training rink in Massachusetts, and struck her on the thigh a few inches above the knee with a collapsible police baton. Her leg only got bruised, not broken, but the injury forced her to withdraw from the national championship. Harding won that event, and they both were selected for the 1994 Olympic
1994 Winter Olympics
The 1994 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XVII Olympic Winter Games, was a winter multi-sport event celebrated from 12 to 27 February 1994 in and around Lillehammer, Norway. Lillehammer failed to win the bid for the 1992 event. Lillehammer was awarded the games in 1988, after having beat...

 team. After Harding admitted to helping to cover up the attack, the USFSA and United States Olympic Committee
United States Olympic Committee
The United States Olympic Committee is a non-profit organization that serves as the National Olympic Committee and National Paralympic Committee for the United States and coordinates the relationship between the United States Anti-Doping Agency and the World Anti-Doping Agency and various...

 initiated proceedings to remove her from the Olympic team, but she retained her place after threatening legal action. She finished eighth in Lillehammer, while Kerrigan, by then fully recovered from the injury, won the silver medal.

The attack on Kerrigan and the news of Harding's alleged involvement led to a media frenzy of saturation news coverage. She appeared on the cover of both Time
Time (magazine)
Time is an American news magazine. A European edition is published from London. Time Europe covers the Middle East, Africa and, since 2003, Latin America. An Asian edition is based in Hong Kong...

and Newsweek
Newsweek
Newsweek is an American weekly news magazine published in New York City. It is distributed throughout the United States and internationally. It is the second-largest news weekly magazine in the U.S., having trailed Time in circulation and advertising revenue for most of its existence...

magazines in January 1994. Reporters and TV news crews attended her practices in Portland and camped out in front of Kerrigan's home. CBS
CBS
CBS Broadcasting Inc. is a major US commercial broadcasting television network, which started as a radio network. The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network" in reference to the shape of...

 assigned Connie Chung
Connie Chung
Connie Chung, full name: Constance Yu-Hwa Chung Povich is an American journalist who has been an anchor and reporter for the U.S. television news networks NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, and MSNBC. Some of her more famous interview subjects include Claus von Bülow and U.S...

 to follow her every move in Lillehammer. Counting 400 members of the press jammed into the practice rink in Norway, Scott Hamilton
Scott Hamilton (figure skater)
Scott Scovell Hamilton is an American figure skater and Olympic gold medalist. He won four consecutive U.S. championships , four consecutive World Championships and a gold medal in the 1984 Olympics....

 complained that "the world press was turning the Olympics into just another sensational tabloid event". The tape-delayed broadcast of the short program at the Olympics remains one of the most watched telecasts in American history.

On February 1, 1994, Gillooly accepted a plea bargain
Plea bargain
A plea bargain is an agreement in a criminal case whereby the prosecutor offers the defendant the opportunity to plead guilty, usually to a lesser charge or to the original criminal charge with a recommendation of a lighter than the maximum sentence.A plea bargain allows criminal defendants to...

 in exchange for his testimony against Harding.
Gillooly, Stant, Eckhardt, and getaway car driver Derrick Smith all served time in prison for the attack. Eckhardt was sentenced to 18 months in prison for racketeering but was released four months early in September 1995.

Harding avoided further prosecution and a possible jail sentence by pleading guilty
Plea bargain
A plea bargain is an agreement in a criminal case whereby the prosecutor offers the defendant the opportunity to plead guilty, usually to a lesser charge or to the original criminal charge with a recommendation of a lighter than the maximum sentence.A plea bargain allows criminal defendants to...

 on March 16 to conspiring to hinder prosecution of the attackers. She received three years probation, 500 hours of community service and a $160,000 fine. As part of the plea bargain, she was also forced to withdraw from the 1994 World Figure Skating Championships
1994 World Figure Skating Championships
The World Figure Skating Championships is an annual figure skating competition sanctioned by the International Skating Union in which elite figure skaters compete for the title of World Champion. This event is considered the most prestigious of the ISU Championships...

 and resign from the USFSA. On June 30, 1994, after conducting its own investigation of the attack, the USFSA stripped her of her 1994 U.S. Championships title and banned her for life from participating in USFSA-run events as either a skater or a coach. The USFSA concluded that she knew about the attack before it happened and displayed "a clear disregard for fairness, good sportsmanship and ethical behavior". Although the USFSA has no control over professional skating events, she was also persona non grata
Persona non grata
Persona non grata , literally meaning "an unwelcome person", is a legal term used in diplomacy that indicates a proscription against a person entering the country...

on the pro circuit because few skaters and promoters would work with her. Consequently, she failed to benefit from the pro skating boom that ensued in the aftermath of the scandal.

Harding maintained her innocence in and disgust of the attack, and got a tattoo of an angel on her back, allegedly as a symbol of her innocence . In her 2008 autobiography, The Tonya Tapes, she said that she wanted to call the FBI to reveal what she knew, but refused when Gillooly allegedly threatened her with death following a gunpoint gang rape by him and two other men she did not know. He subsequently changed his name to Jeff Stone and called the allegations "utterly ridiculous". Eckhardt, who legally changed his name to Brian Sean Griffith following his release from jail, died of natural causes at age 40 on December 12, 2007.

Later celebrity


Harding entered the celebrity sex tape
Celebrity sex tape
A celebrity sex tape is typically an amateur pornographic video recording involving one or more celebrity famous person which has been, intentionally or unintentionally, made available publicly....

 world when an explicit "Wedding Video" showed her having sex with her ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly. Gillooly had sold the tape to a tabloid TV show after being implicated as a conspirator in the Kerrigan attack. Stills from the tape were published by Penthouse in September 1994 and the tape itself was released at about the same time. Harding tried to distance herself from it.

She appeared on a USA Pro Wrestling show in 1994 as the manager for wrestler Art Barr
Art Barr
Arthur Leon "Art" Barr was an American professional wrestler. While he wrestled briefly for World Championship Wrestling, he found his greatest success in Mexico's Asistencia Asesoría y Administración promotion....

.

A one-off promotional musical event was unsuccessful when she and her band, the Golden Blades, were booed off the stage in their only performance, in 1995 in Portland, Oregon.

She had a part in a 1996 crime-film entitled Breakaway, playing the girlfriend of a criminal.

In late 1996 she used mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to help revive an 81-year-old woman, Alice Olson, who collapsed at a bar in Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon
Portland is a city located in the Pacific Northwest, near the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers in the U.S. state of Oregon. As of the 2010 Census, it had a population of 583,776, making it the 29th most populous city in the United States...

 while playing video poker
Video poker
Video poker is a casino game based on five-card draw poker. It is played on a computerized console similar in size to a slot machine.-History:...

. (Olson died at age 90 in 2005.)

In March 2008 she became a regular commentator for TruTV's The Smoking Gun Presents: World's Dumbest...
The Smoking Gun Presents: World's Dumbest...
truTV Presents: World's Dumbest... is a cable television series produced by Meetinghouse Productions, Inc. and is airing on truTV...

.


Harding had a number of minor run-ins with the law following her involvement with the Kerrigan attack. Some of the incidents that have been reported in the press
include the following:
  • On May 25, 1995, it was reported that she claimed she was being stalked by someone driving a white Lincoln Town Car, resulting in a car chase involving her, her ex-husband Gillooly, and the police.
  • On February 12, 1997, Harding claimed that she was abducted at knife-point outside her home by a bushy-haired man who forced her to drive to a rural area, where she rammed her truck into a tree and escaped by running into the woods. Police found no evidence of an abduction. This alleged incident happened on the opening weekend of the 1997 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.
  • On October 16, 1997, she reported that her truck had been stolen from a shopping mall parking lot.
  • On January 6, 2000, Harding was in the news again after she lost control of her truck on an icy road and landed in a ditch. Her then boyfriend, Darren Silver, allegedly made threats against a press photographer.
  • On February 24, 2000, Harding was ordered by a Clark County
    Clark County, Washington
    Clark County is a county located in the southwestern part of the U.S. state of Washington, across the Columbia River from Portland, Oregon.Clark County was the first county of Washington, named after William Clark of the Lewis and Clark Expedition...

     judge to avoid alcohol
    Alcoholic beverage
    An alcoholic beverage is a drink containing ethanol, commonly known as alcohol. Alcoholic beverages are divided into three general classes: beers, wines, and spirits. They are legally consumed in most countries, and over 100 countries have laws regulating their production, sale, and consumption...

     and her former boyfriend, Darren Silver, after being booked on fourth-degree Domestic Violence
    Domestic violence
    Domestic violence, also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence, and intimate partner violence , is broadly defined as a pattern of abusive behaviors by one or both partners in an intimate relationship such as marriage, dating, family, or cohabitation...

     assault charges for punching and throwing a hubcap at him at their Camas, Washington
    Camas, Washington
    Camas is a city in Clark County, Washington, with a population of 19,355 at the 2010 census. Officially incorporated on June 18, 1906, the city is named after the camas lily, a plant with an onion-like bulb prized by Native Americans. At the west end of downtown Camas is a large Georgia-Pacific...

     residence. She was also sentenced to 3 days in jail and 10 days of community service on a work crew. Shortly before this Harding was attempting to make a comeback as a professional skater, but the hubcap incident effectively ended her return to skating.
  • On April 20, 2002, she was involved in another accident with her truck. She was cited for drunk driving and a violation of her probation agreement from her 2000 conviction.
  • On October 23, 2005, Harding, apparently under the influence of alcohol again, was involved in a fight at her home in Vancouver, Washington
    Vancouver, Washington
    Vancouver is a city on the north bank of the Columbia River in the U.S. state of Washington. Incorporated in 1857, it is the fourth largest city in the state with a 2010 census population of 161,791 as of April 1, 2010...

     with Christopher Nolan, a man she described as her boyfriend. Initially, she made a 911 call claiming to have been assaulted in her home by two masked men. For his part, Nolan claimed that she attacked him after having too much to drink. In the end, he was charged with assault and ordered to stay away from her and to avoid alcohol.
  • On March 11, 2007, the Clark County sheriff's office responded to two calls related to her. The first call was from Harding, at 5 a.m. She told the officer who responded that she had observed five armed intruders trying to steal her vehicle and hide rifles on her property. The responding officer's report described her as "agitated" and her story as "very implausible," and recorded her frustration that others could not see the people she saw. He could find no evidence to back up her claims. The second call, four hours later, at 9 a.m., was from a friend who had agreed to let her visit. Her host told police that although she was not violent, she was "tweaking out, seeing animals," and she was worried about her children's safety. She requested police return her to her home. Police reported that the officer who returned to her home inspected her house, to reassure her, and advised her to seek medical help. Linda Lewis, her longtime agent, attributed her behavior to a bad interaction of legitimate prescription drugs.

Boxing career


In 2002, she boxed on the Fox TV network Celebrity Boxing
Celebrity Boxing
Celebrity Boxing was a FOX television show, in which celebrities whose careers and/or notoriety had diminished were pitted against each other in exhibition boxing matches. The contestants wore headgear during the fights, which were scheduled for three rounds apiece...

event against Paula Jones
Paula Jones
Paula Corbin Jones is a former Arkansas state employee who sued U.S. President Bill Clinton for sexual harassment. The lawsuit was dismissed before trial on the grounds that Jones failed to demonstrate any damages...

, winning the fight. On February 22, 2003, she made her official women's professional boxing
Women's boxing
Women's boxing first appeared in the Olympic Games at a demonstration bout in 1902. For most of the 20th century, however, it was banned in most nations. Its revival was pioneered by the Swedish Amateur Boxing Association, which sanctioned events for women in 1988. The British Amateur Boxing...

 debut, losing a four round decision in the undercard of the Mike Tyson
Mike Tyson
Michael Gerard "Mike" Tyson is a retired American boxer. Tyson is a former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and holds the record as the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF world heavyweight titles, he was 20 years, 4 months and 22 days old...

-Clifford Etienne
Clifford Etienne
Clifford Etienne , also known as "The Black Rhino", is a former American boxer, who is currently serving a 150 year prison sentence without possibility of parole.-Background:...

 bout, amid rumors that she was having financial difficulties and needed to box to earn money.

She won her third pro bout against Alejandra Lopez at the Creek Nations Gaming Center.

On March 23, 2004, it was reported that she cancelled a planned boxing match against Tracy Carlton in Oakland, California
Oakland, California
Oakland is a major West Coast port city on San Francisco Bay in the U.S. state of California. It is the eighth-largest city in the state with a 2010 population of 390,724...

 because of an alleged death threat against her.

On June 24, 2004, after reportedly not having boxed for over a year, she was beaten in a match in Edmonton
Edmonton
Edmonton is the capital of the Canadian province of Alberta and is the province's second-largest city. Edmonton is located on the North Saskatchewan River and is the centre of the Edmonton Capital Region, which is surrounded by the central region of the province.The city and its census...

, Alberta
Alberta
Alberta is a province of Canada. It had an estimated population of 3.7 million in 2010 making it the most populous of Canada's three prairie provinces...

 by boxer Amy Johnson. Fans reportedly booed her as she entered the ring and cheered wildly for Johnson as she won in the third round. Harding later protested the outcome.

Her boxing career was quite short, a brevity she attributes to asthma.
Her overall record was 3–3–0.

Boxing record



|-
| align="center" colspan="8" | 3 Wins (3 decisions), 3 Losses (2 knockouts, 1 decision), 0 Drawshttp://www.boxrec.com/boxer_display.php?boxer_id=175290
|-
! Date
! Opponent
! Result
! Type
! Round, Time
! Location
|- align="center"
| 2004-06-25
| Amy Johnson
| style="background-color: #fcc;" | Loss
| TKO
| 3 , 1:04
| Edmonton
Edmonton
Edmonton is the capital of the Canadian province of Alberta and is the province's second-largest city. Edmonton is located on the North Saskatchewan River and is the centre of the Edmonton Capital Region, which is surrounded by the central region of the province.The city and its census...

, Alberta
Alberta
Alberta is a province of Canada. It had an estimated population of 3.7 million in 2010 making it the most populous of Canada's three prairie provinces...

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...


|- align="center"
| 2003-08-02
| Melissa Yanas
| style="background-color: #fcc;" | Loss
| TKO
| 1 , 1:13
| Dallas, Texas
Dallas, Texas
Dallas is the third-largest city in Texas and the ninth-largest in the United States. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is the largest metropolitan area in the South and fourth-largest metropolitan area in the United States...

, U.S.
|- align="center"
| 2003-06-13
| Emily Gosa
| style="background-color: #cfc;" | Win
| Decision (unanimous)
| 4
| Lincoln City, Oregon
Lincoln City, Oregon
Lincoln City is a city in Lincoln County, Oregon, United States. It is named after the county. The population was 7,930 at the 2010 census.- History :...

, U.S.
|- align="center"
| 2003-03-28
| Alejandra Lopez
| style="background-color: #cfc;" | Win
| Decision (unanimous)
| 4
| Tulsa, Oklahoma
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Tulsa is the second-largest city in the state of Oklahoma and 46th-largest city in the United States. With a population of 391,906 as of the 2010 census, it is the principal municipality of the Tulsa Metropolitan Area, a region with 937,478 residents in the MSA and 988,454 in the CSA. Tulsa's...

, U.S.
|- align="center"
| 2003-03-15
| Shannon Birmingham
| style="background-color: #cfc;" | Win
| Decision (unanimous)
| 4
| Gulfport, Mississippi
Gulfport, Mississippi
Gulfport is the second largest city in Mississippi after the state capital Jackson. It is the larger of the two principal cities of the Gulfport-Biloxi, Mississippi Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, Mississippi Combined Statistical Area. As of the...

, U.S.
|- align="center"
| 2003-02-22
| Samantha Browning
| style="background-color: #fcc;" | Loss
| Decision (split)
| 4
| Memphis, Tennessee
Memphis, Tennessee
Memphis is a city in the southwestern corner of the U.S. state of Tennessee, and the county seat of Shelby County. The city is located on the 4th Chickasaw Bluff, south of the confluence of the Wolf and Mississippi rivers....

, U.S.

In popular culture

  • The book Women on Ice: Feminist Essays on the Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan Spectacle (ISBN 0-415-91150-8), published in 1995, included a number of essays analyzing her public image in the context of the sport of figure skating.
  • In an episode of the television program Seinfeld
    Seinfeld
    Seinfeld is an American television sitcom that originally aired on NBC from July 5, 1989, to May 14, 1998, lasting nine seasons, and is now in syndication. It was created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, the latter starring as a fictionalized version of himself...

    called The Understudy
    The Understudy (Seinfeld episode)
    "The Understudy" is the 110th episode of the NBC sitcom Seinfeld. This was the 24th and final episode for the 6th season. It aired on May 18, 1995.-Plot:...

    ,
    Jerry Seinfeld
    Jerry Seinfeld
    Jerome Allen "Jerry" Seinfeld is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and television and film producer, known for playing a semi-fictional version of himself in the situation comedy Seinfeld , which he co-created and co-wrote with Larry David, and, in the show's final two seasons,...

     is dating the understudy of stage performer Bette Midler
    Bette Midler
    Bette Midler is an American singer, actress, and comedian, also known by her informal stage name, The Divine Miss M. She became famous as a cabaret and concert headliner, and went on to star in successful and acclaimed films such as The Rose, Ruthless People, Beaches, and For The Boys...

     named Gennice, who is played by Adelaide Miller. Seinfeld's friend George accidentally injures Midler in a softball game and the understudy has to take over Midler's part in the musical Rochelle Rochelle. Enraged fans then call Seinfeld "Gillooly," in addition to George and Gennice getting into mishaps and being shunned for the incident. When Gennice takes the stage, she has a problem with the laces on her boot and, in an act reminiscent of Harding's bootlace incident, tearfully asks that she be allowed to start over.
  • Elizabeth Searle
    Elizabeth Searle
    Elizabeth Searle is an American novelist and short story writer. Her works have included the novel A Four Sided Bed and the short story collections My Body to You and Celebrities in Disgrace. Her new novel "Girl Held in Home" is forthcoming in October of 2011. She wrote the libretto for Tonya...

    's novella, Celebrities In Disgrace, centers on the Harding-Kerrigan affair. The novel was adapted by Searle and composer Abigail Al-Doory to Tonya and Nancy: The Opera, a chamber opera produced in May 2006 by Tufts University
    Tufts University
    Tufts University is a private research university located in Medford/Somerville, near Boston, Massachusetts. It is organized into ten schools, including two undergraduate programs and eight graduate divisions, on four campuses in Massachusetts and on the eastern border of France...

     and performed at the American Repertory Theater's Zero Arrow Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts, under the direction of Meron Langsner. A documentary on the making of the opera and the media frenzy it caused is currently in post-production at Charles River Media Group. The film, titled A Good Whack, is directed by Don Schechter. As of 2005, the novel on which the opera was based is also being adapted into a short film. Searle later created Tonya & Nancy: The Rock Opera, which premiered on the West Coast in 2008 and which Harding herself attended.
  • She was the subject of "Tonya's Twirls", a song by Loudon Wainwright III
    Loudon Wainwright III
    Loudon Snowden Wainwright III is a Grammy Award-winning American songwriter, folk singer, humorist, and actor. He is the father of musicians Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright and Lucy Wainwright Roche, brother of Sloan Wainwright, and the former husband of the late folk singer Kate McGarrigle.To...

    , a US folk music
    Folk music
    Folk music is an English term encompassing both traditional folk music and contemporary folk music. The term originated in the 19th century. Traditional folk music has been defined in several ways: as music transmitted by mouth, as music of the lower classes, and as music with unknown composers....

    ian. The song draws humor from her lifestyle, but it ultimately resolves as a lament for lost innocence. The song was recorded and issued on Social Studies (1999), with a live recording also issued on So Damn Happy (2003).
  • In the 1994 satire movie Attack of the 5 Ft. 2 In. Women
    Attack of the 5 Ft. 2 In. Women
    National Lampoon's Attack of the 5 Ft. 2 In. Women is a 1994 Showtime television movie that parodies two sensational news stories from the 1990s: The Tonya Harding-Nancy Kerrigan incident, and the John and Lorena Bobbitt incident. The movie is presented as a double feature, with Julie Brown...

    , Julie Brown
    Julie Brown
    Julie Ann Brown is an American actress, comedienne, screen/television writer, singer-songwriter, television director. Brown is perhaps best known for her work in the 1980s, where she often played a quintessential valley girl character...

     played the role of "Tonya Hardly".
  • The "Weird Al" Yankovic
    "Weird Al" Yankovic
    Alfred Matthew "Weird Al" Yankovic is an American singer-songwriter, music producer, accordionist, actor, comedian, writer, satirist, and parodist. Yankovic is known for his humorous songs that make light of popular culture and that often parody specific songs by contemporary musical acts...

     song "Headline News" contains lyrics about Harding and her role in the attack on Kerrigan.
  • In the 2006 film The Break-Up
    The Break-Up
    The Break-Up is a 2006 American comedy-drama romance film directed by Peyton Reed, starring Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn. It was written by Jay Lavender and Jeremy Garelick and produced by Universal Pictures.-Plot:...

    , starring Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston, Vaughn's character compares Aniston's to Tonya Harding, after her character's brother "attacks" his.
  • In Season 7, Episode 4 of Gilmore Girls
    Gilmore Girls
    Gilmore Girls is an American family comedy-drama series created by Amy Sherman-Palladino, starring Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel. On October 5, 2000, the series debuted on The WB and was cancelled in its seventh season, ending on May 15, 2007 on The CW...

    , Miss Patty tells an irate Luke Danes who is worried about the violence in his daughter's high school that one of the ballerina's she once instructed "pulled a Tonya Harding" at an audition, referring to an attempt to sabotage a rival's chances.
  • In addition, she and her role in the Kerrigan attack have been widely referenced in sitcom episodes, music videos, and even a primary campaign
    Democratic Party (United States) presidential primaries, 2008
    The 2008 Democratic presidential primaries were the selection process by which voters of the Democratic Party chose its nominee for President of the United States in the 2008 U.S. presidential election...

     speech by Barack Obama
    Barack Obama
    Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned following his victory in the 2008 presidential election.Born in...

    .
  • In the American Dad episode Of Ice and Men
    Of Ice and Men
    "Of Ice and Men" is a second season episode of the animated series American Dad! The title is a play on the title for the famous novel, Of Mice and Men.-Plot:...

     Roger wears a Tonya Harding outfit and attacks Terry parodying the Nancy Kerrigan incident.


Figure skating results


Event 1985–86 1986–87 1987–88 1988–89 1989–90 1990–91 1991–92 1992–93 1993–94
Winter Olympics
Winter Olympic Games
The Winter Olympic Games is a sporting event, which occurs every four years. The first celebration of the Winter Olympics was held in Chamonix, France, in 1924. The original sports were alpine and cross-country skiing, figure skating, ice hockey, Nordic combined, ski jumping and speed skating...

 
4th 8th
World Championships
World Figure Skating Championships
The World Figure Skating Championships is an annual figure skating competition sanctioned by the International Skating Union in which elite figure skaters compete for the title of World Champion...

 
2nd 6th
U.S. Championships
United States Figure Skating Championships
The United States Figure Skating Championships is figure skating competition held annually to crown the national champions of the United States. The competition is sanctioned by U.S. Figure Skating. In the U.S. skating community, the event is often referred to informally as "Nationals".Skaters...

 
6th 5th 5th 3rd 7th 1st 3rd 4th 1st
Skate America
Skate America
Skate America is an international, senior-level figure skating competition held as part of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. It is organized by the United States Figure Skating Association. The location changes yearly...

 
2nd 1st 1st 3rd
Skate Canada International
Skate Canada International
The Skate Canada International is an international, senior-level invitation-only figure skating competition organized by Skate Canada. It is the second competition of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating. The location changes yearly. Medals are awarded in four disciplines: Ladies' singles, Men's...

 
4th
Nations Cup  1st
NHK Trophy
NHK Trophy
The NHK Trophy is an international, senior-level figure skating competition held as part of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. Figure skaters compete in the disciplines of ladies' singles, men's singles, pair skating, and ice dancing....

 
3rd 2nd 4th
U.S. Olympic Festival  1st
Prize of Moscow News
Prize of Moscow News
The Prize of Moscow News , also known as the Moscow Skate, Nouvelles de Moscou, and the Moscow News Trophy, was an international, senior-level figure skating competition held in the former Soviet Union from 1966 to 1990...

 
1st



Sources:

External links