BORN EDWINA HIGGS IN 1936 IN ENGLAND, she and her twin sister Toni (Antoinette McCallum) took up skating in Melbourne as an interest when they arrived in their teens in the early 1950s to live in the bayside suburb of Sandringham. Their ability was noted by leading Australian skater, Eddie Spicer, and within two years she had won the first of her Victorian- Australian championship doubles with Spicer's help and encouragement.
She trained five days a week at the gym, three days running, rink training twice and racing twice. She won the Ladies' Quarter Mile title in 1954 in Sydney when she was 18 years-old, but she was forced to withdraw from the half-mile event after several falls caused by blunt skates. Her step-father told the press someone had taken the skates before the event and returned them with ground down edges.
She represented Australia at the 1963 world speed skating championships at Karuizawa rink in Japan. Her results were 500m: 49,6 (28); 1000m: 1.45,3 (34); and 1500m: 2.55,4 (33) [Samalog 160.717 (NC33)]. She still held the rink record on Lake Ida in New Zealand in 2008. In the early-1970s, in her early thirties, she had taken part in the Inter-Dominion skate meeting there, where she shot to the front at the gun, and 59.5s later led the way across the finish line.
Even at 37, "an attractive mother from Victoria", she flashed across the ice of Sydney's Prince Alfred Park rink to capture another national 500m speed skating title. She had previously won the national 1000m and 1500m events, making a grand total of 48 Australian titles. They were not consecutive, she missed the 1967 and 1968 championships, but that was only time off in which to have her baby, son David, and then back again with a vengeance the following year. She was by then "to Australian speed skating what Heather McKay was to squash". McKay, 12 times world squash champion, had at that time won the Australian title an incredible 14 times in a row.
In the 1960s, she donated a trophy for the women's speed skating relay. The ninth inductee to the Australian Ice Racing (AIR) Roll of Honour, her trophy known as the AIRC Teddi Jenkins Shield was no longer awarded from 2015.
Ross Carpenter, 'Jenkins, Teddi', Legends of Australian Ice, Melbourne, Australia, http://icelegendsaustralia.com/legends-2/bio-jenkins.html, accessed online .
1. Australian Ice Racing (AIR) Roll of Honour, 2014
2. Titles galore for Teddi, Brian Mossop, The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, Aug 5th 1973, p 66.