Colin Coates

One of Australia's best performances at an Olympic Winter Games came from Colin Coates, a speed skater. In 1976 at Innsbruck, he finished sixth in the 10,000 metres; he also finished eighth in the 1500m, 10th in the 5,000m, 11th in the 1,000m and 23rd in the 500m. He was the 29, competing in his third Olympics. He went on to represent as a competitor an astonishing six times by 1988, capping a 20-year Olympic career with his fastest 10,000m ever. Coates was an extraordinary athlete: three times Australian speed skating champion, triple Australian and ten times Victorian champion in a 14-foot sailing dinghy, a competent ice hockey player and cyclist. Once, while skiing, he fell 25 metres on to an ice ledge, breaking both arms, his jaw, left shoulder and nose. He had 10 metal pins inserted in his body, but was back skating and racing on ice within three weeks.

Taken from Harry Gordon’s ‘Australia and the Olympic Games’

Olympic Results

1988 Calgary

10000m - Men
Final 14:41.88 26
Final Placing 26 / 32

1984 Sarejevo

10000m - Men
Final 15:21.73 22
Final Placing 22 / 32
1500m - Men
Final 2:08.13 37
Final Placing 37 / 40
5000m - Men
Final 7:38.08 25
Final Placing 25 / 42

1980 Lake Placid

10000m - Men
Final 15:28.30 18
Final Placing 18 / 25
1000m - Men
Final 1:21.68 29
Final Placing 29 / 41
5000m - Men
Final 7:27.25 19
Final Placing 19 / 29

1976 Innsbruck

10000m - Men
Final 15:16.80 6
Final Placing 6 / 20
1000m - Men
Final 1:21.72 11
Final Placing 11 / 31
1500m - Men
Final 2:03.34 8
Final Placing 8 / 30
5000m - Men
Final 7:41.96 10
Final Placing 10 / 31
500m - Men
Final 41.77 25
Final Placing 25 / 29

1972 Sapporo

10000m - Men
Final 16:29.94 18
Final Placing 18 / 24
1500m - Men
Final 2:12.14 24
Final Placing 24 / 39
5000m - Men
Final 8:09.35 23
Final Placing 23 / 28
500m - Men
Final 44.74 36
Final Placing 36 / 38

1968 Grenoble

1500m - Men
Final 2:16.7 49
Final Placing 49 / 53
500m - Men
Final 43.3 41
Final Placing 41 / 48