Russian speedskater. Name variations: Natalya.
Won the gold medal in the 1000 meters in the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid, New York.
Amid rumors of illegal drug use, Russian speedskater Natalia Petruseva nosed out second-place American Leah Mueller by 40 feet to win the gold medal in the 1000-meter event during the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid, New York. The controversy over Petruseva began a few weeks earlier, when, after winning the world sprint championship in Norway, she had taken seven hours to produce a urine sample. Drug use seemed even more of a possibility when she finished only eighth in the 1,500 meters, the opening Olympic event. However, after coming in third in the 500 meters and winning the 1000 meters, she passed the drug test without incident.