Zhanna Pintusevich-Block

Zhanna Pintusevich-Block (Ukrainian: Жанна Пінтусевич-Блок; née Tarnopolskaya; born 6 July 1972) is a Ukrainian former world champion sprinter who competed in the Olympic Games.

Zhanna Pintusevich-Block
Zhanna Tarnopolskaya-Pintusevich.jpg
Personal information
Native nameЖанна Пінтусевич-Блок
Birth nameZhanna Tarnopolskaya
Full nameZhanna Pintusevich-Block
Born (1972-07-06) 6 July 1972 (age 50)
Nizhyn, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
SportTrack and field
Event(s)Sprint; 60 metres, 100 metres, and 200 metres
Coached byMark Block
Achievements and titles
Highest world rankingWorld champion (60 m, 100 m, 200 m)
Personal best(s)100 metres: 10.82 seconds
Medal record
Women's Athletics
Representing  Ukraine
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 1997 Athens 200 m
Gold medal – first place 2001 Edmonton 100 m
Silver medal – second place 1997 Athens 100 m
Disqualified 2003 Paris 100 m
World Indoor Championships
Disqualified Birmingham 2003 60 m
Bronze medal – third place Toronto 1993 60 m
European Championships
Silver medal – second place 1994 Helsinki 100 m
Silver medal – second place 1994 Helsinki 200 m
Silver medal – second place 1998 Budapest 200 m
Goodwill Games
Silver medal – second place 1998 New York City 100 m
Silver medal – second place 1998 New York City 200 m
Silver medal – second place 2001 Brisbane 100 m
Updated on 7 July 2015.

Early lifeEdit

Zhanna Pintusevich-Block comes from a Jewish family. She was born in Nizhyn, Soviet Union and raised by her mother after her father left when she was three. They lived in a one-room house with no running water and used a coal stove for heat. .[1][2]

Track careerEdit

In 1991, Block won the 100 metres and 200 metres at the European Junior Championships, along with a silver in the 4 x 400 metres relay while representing the USSR. In 1992, Block won the European Indoor Championships for 60m and in 1993 won the bronze medal in the same even at the World Championships in Toronto.

She was 1997 World 200m Champion and 2001 World 100m champion. She also won 2 World silvers and 3 European silvers in the sprints. In 2001, she was named Person of the Year in Ukraine for Sports, ahead of former heavyweight champion boxer Wladimir Klitschko and footballer Andriy Shevchenko.

Block was identified by Victor Conte as allegedly having taken illegal performance-enhancing drugs supplied by Conte in the BALCO scandal.[3] In 2011, she was handed a two-year ban from sports for doping violation without a hearing. While never being convicted of using illegal drugs, her results from 30 November 2002 onward were disqualified.[4] Her husband and coach, Mark Block, was given a 10-year ban from sport for receiving performance-enhancing drugs as part of the BALCO scandal.[4][5]

She took part in the 100 and 200 metres races at both the 1996 Summer Olympics and the 2000 Summer Olympics, reaching the final three times. She also took part in the 100 m and 4 x 100 metres relay at the 2004 Olympics. However, she failed to progress to the finals. She has never won an Olympic medal but she managed to finish in fourth place in the 100 m final in Sydney. Her 100 metres personal best time of 10.82 seconds was set in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on 6 August 2001.

Personal lifeEdit

She has been married to her coach, Mark Block, since 1999 and has one daughter.[6] Block posed nude in the September 2004 edition of Playboy in a 'Women of the Olympics' feature.[7]

See alsoEdit


  • Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Zhanna Pintusevych-Blok". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 18 April 2020.
  1. ^ Elon Gilad (27 February 2014). "The first marathon runner wasn't Greek, he was Jewish". Haaretz. Retrieved 6 October 2019.
  2. ^ "Zhanna Pintusevich". jewishsports.net.
  3. ^ Duncan Mackay (27 April 2004). "Block Named on Balco Supply List". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 6 October 2019.
  4. ^ a b "List of athletes currently serving a period of ineligibility as a result of an anti-doping rule violation under IAAF Rules". IAAF. 2 November 2012. Archived from the original on 13 November 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
  5. ^ "Mark Block suspended for 10 years". Associated Press. 18 March 2011. Retrieved 6 October 2019.
  6. ^ Scott Granowitz (25 October 2010). "From Kiev, With Speed". Jewishsports.com. Archived from the original on 13 July 2011. Retrieved 9 January 2011.
  7. ^ "Жанна Блок була першою українською спортсменкою, яка знялася для Playboy". 29 April 2020.