Was Ivana Trump an Olympic athlete? What sport did she compete in?
Ivana Trump was an accomplished skier starting as a child in Czechoslovakia, she competed on the country’s junior national team, but was she an Olympian?
Ivana Trump passed away on Thursday survived by her three children she had with Donald Trump and ten grandchildren. As well her legacy as a businesswoman in her own right, author and advice columnist at the Globe.
But perhaps less well known is that she was a skilled skier who competed on the Czechoslovakian junior national team. She claimed to have been chosen as an alternate to compete in the 1972 Winter Olympics to represent her birth nation. But like a lot of what her ex-husband and children pawn it is trumped-up.
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Ivana Trump was an excellent skier but not an Olympic athlete
Ivana Trump was born in Zlín (formerly Gottwaldov), Czechoslovakia (now located in the Czech Republic) at the edge of the Western Carpathian Mountains. Starting at age four, her father encouraged her to learn to ski and treated Ivana more like a boy since she was an only child. She became quite skilled and got serious about the sport at age 13. Ivana competed with the Czechoslovakian junior national team which gave her the opportunity to travel outside the Soviet-era communist boundaries of the country.
She was ambitious and once she had the chance to visit other countries she didn’t want to stay in her hometown according to her mother. She went to Prague to study at Charles University where she got a master’s degree in physical education.
The year prior to graduating, she married her first husband, Alfred Winklmayr, an Austrian skiing friend, with the intent of getting out of Czechoslovakia without defecting. Reportedly, the marriage was never consummated, and in 1973, was dissolved a year after she emigrated to Canada, the mandatory waiting period. Now she was free to travel where she wanted to, including back to visit her parents.
She met Donald Trump, her second husband, in 1976 on a work trip to New York. She was part of a group of models that were there to promote the upcoming Olympic Games in Montreal. They were married a year later.
Donald Trump wrote in his 1987 book ‘Trump: The Art of the Deal’ that Ivana had been selected as an alternate to compete in the 1972 Winter Olympics on the Czechoslovak ski team. Whoever, Ivana or Donald, came up with the fib, she never corrected the story. However, in 1989 Secretary General of the Czechoslovak Olympic Committee said that after a thorough search of the records there was none that could be found to verify her involvement.