Cornelia Oschkenat

Oschkenat in 1988
Medal record
Women's athletics
Representing  East Germany
World Championships
Silver medal – second place 1987 Rome 4 × 100 m relay
Bronze medal – third place 1987 Rome 100 m hurdles
IAAF World Indoor Championships
Gold medal – first place 1987 Indianapolis 60 m hurdles
Bronze medal – third place 1989 Budapest 60 m hurdles
European Championships
Silver medal – second place 1986 Stuttgart 100 m hurdles
European Indoor Championships
Gold medal – first place 1985 Piraeus 60 m hurdles
Gold medal – first place 1986 Madrid 60 m hurdles
Gold medal – first place 1988 Budapest 60 m hurdles
IAAF World Cup
Gold medal – first place 1985 Canberra 100 m hurdles
Gold medal – first place 1989 Barcelona 100 m hurdles
Gold medal – first place 1989 Barcelona 4 × 100 m relay

Cornelia Oschkenat, (née Riefstahl; born 29 October 1961) is a German former track and field athlete who represented East Germany. She competed at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. At the 1987 World Championships in Rome, she won a bronze medal in the 100 metres hurdles with a time of 12.46s as well as silver medal as a member of the East German 4 × 100 metres relay team.

She also won the 1987 World Indoor 60 m hurdles title, two World Cup 100 m hurdles titles and three European Indoor 60 m hurdles titles. Her world indoor record for the 50 metres hurdles of 6.58 secs in 1988, still stands (as of 2019).

Oschkenat won eleven East German individual national titles, taking five titles in the 100 m hurdles between 1984 and 1989 at the East German Athletics Championships, as well as six consecutive titles in the 60 m hurdles at the East German Indoor Athletics Championships over that period.[1][2]


Oschkenat was born Cornelia Riefstahl in Neubrandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, East Germany. She began her international career in 1982 and reached the World Championship final in 1983. She was unable to participate in the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles because of her country's boycott of the games. In 1985, she won the World Cup title in Canberra. In 1986 she won a silver medal behind Yordanka Donkova at the European Championships in Stuttgart.[3] She won perhaps her biggest individual title in 1987, at the World Indoor Championships in Indianapolis, when she won the 60 m hurdles, finishing ahead of her two chief career rivals, the Bulgarian pair of Donkova and Ginka Zagorcheva. Later that year at the World Championships in Rome, she won bronze in the 100 m hurdles behind Zagorcheva and East German teammate Gloria Siebert, but ahead of Donkova, who was fourth.

A medal favourite for the 1988 Seoul Olympics, she pulled a muscle midway through the final and limped over the line in eight place. After finishing third at the 1989 World Indoor Championships, she went on to have one of her best ever outdoor seasons. Her victories included both the European and World cup events. She ended the outdoor season unbeaten. Having been ranked second in the Track and Field News world merit rankings for three consecutive years, 1985–87, she was the clear number one in 1989. In 1990, she finished fourth at the European Championships in Split in what would be her eighth consecutive (and final) year ranked in the world top ten (on time and merit). She represented a united Germany at the 1991 World Championships in Tokyo but was eliminated in the heats and retired at the end of that season.

Oschkenat represented the Dynamo Berlin sport club. During her career she was 1.76 meters tall and weighed 65 kilograms. She married fellow hurdler, Andreas Oschkenat in 1984.

Cornelia Oschkenat (nearest camera), Heike Theele and Kerstin Knabe in Jena (1986)

International competitions

Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
Representing  East Germany
1982 European Championships Athens, Greece 10th (h) 100 m hurdles 13.07
1983 World Championships Helsinki, Finland 7th 100 m hurdles 12.95
1985 European Indoor Championships Piraeus, Greece 1st 60 m hurdles 7.90
World Cup Canberra, Australia 1st 100 m hurdles 12.72
1986 European Indoor Championships Madrid, Spain 1st 60 m hurdles 7.79
Goodwill Games Moscow, Soviet Union 2nd 100 m hurdles 12.62
European Championships Stuttgart, Germany 2nd 100 m hurdles 12.55
Grand Prix Final Rome, Italy 3rd 100 m hurdles 12.71
1987 World Indoor Championships Indianapolis, United States 1st 60 m hurdles 7.82
World Championships Rome, Italy 3rd 100 m hurdles 12.46
2nd 4 × 100 m relay 41.95
1988 European Indoor Championships Budapest, Hungary 1st 60 m hurdles 7.77
Olympic Games Seoul, South Korea 8th 100 m hurdles 13.73
1989 World Indoor Championships Budapest, Hungary 3rd 60 m hurdles 7.86
World Cup Barcelona, Spain 1st 100 m hurdles 12.60
1st 4 × 100 m relay 42.21
1990 European Championships Split, Yugoslavia 4th 100 m hurdles 12.94
Representing  Germany
1991 World Championships Tokyo, Japan 28th (h) 100 m hurdles 13.55

(h) Indicates overall position in qualifying heats.

National titles


  1. ^ East German Indoor Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  2. ^ East German Indoor Championships. GBR Athletics. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  3. ^ European Championships
Sporting positions Preceded byYordanka Donkova Women's 100 m Hurdles Best Year Performance 1989 Succeeded byNataliya Grygoryeva