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Janet Simpson

Full name: Janet Mary Simpson (-Clerc)
Gender: Female
Height: 5'5" (166 cm)
Weight: 143 lbs (65 kg)
Born: September 2, 1944 in Barnet, Greater London, Great Britain
Died: March 14, 2010
Affiliations: London Olympiades, London (GBR)
Country: GBR Great Britain
Sport: Athletics

Related Olympians: Daughter of Violet Webb; Wife of Philippe Clerc.

Medals: 1 Bronze (1 Total)

Biography

Janet Simpson had the example of her mother to follow as she embarked on a career in track and field athletics. Violet Webb had won an Olympic bronze medal as part of Britain's sprint relay quartet at the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles and had also won a medal in the long jump at the 1934 British Empire Games. An outstanding athlete as a youngster she first represented Great Britain as an eighteen year old in 1963 and had only just passed twenty when she reached the Olympic 200 m final in Tokyo. It was in Tokyo that she emulated her mother's feat and brought home a bronze medal in the sprint relay.

Simpson continued her progress in 1965 and 1966 by winning consecutive Women's AAA 200 m titles and picking up another sprint relay medal, a silver, at the 1966 Commonwealth Games but then took a sabbatical from the track in 1967 before returning as a 400 m runner in the Olympic year of 1968. She showed a continuous improvement in her one lap running throughout the season culminating in a 4th place finish in the Olympic 400 m final where she took a clear second off her personal best. A finalist in the individual 400 m at the 1969 European Championship it was her performance as part of the Great Britain 4×400 m team that was arguably the greatest of her career. Combining with Pat Lowe, Rosemary Stirling and Lillian Board against an equally strong French team the British foursome won a desperately close race in a new world record time.

Although she retired at the end of 1969 she returned for one more tilt at the Olympic Games in 1972 and though she failed to progress from the heats of the individual event she once again was part of a relay squad that reached the Olympic final as Great Britain placed fifth in the 4×400 m. By now married to former European 200 m champion Philippe Clerc of Switzerland she finally walked away from competitive athletics following the Munich Olympic Games. As of 2010 Simpson and Webb are the only British mother and daughter combination to win Olympic medals on the track.

Personal Bests: 100 – 11.6 (1965); 200 – 23.75 (1964); 400 – 52.57 (1968).

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Women's 200 metres Great Britain GBR 7
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay Great Britain GBR 3 Bronze
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Women's 400 metres Great Britain GBR 4
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay Great Britain GBR 7
1972 Summer 27 München Athletics Women's 400 metres Great Britain GBR 5 h6 r1/4
1972 Summer 27 München Athletics Women's 4 × 400 metres Relay Great Britain GBR 5

Women's 200 metres

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T(H) T(A) L
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Great Britain Final 7 23.9 23.98 5
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Great Britain Semi-Finals Heat One 3 QU 23.7 23,75
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Great Britain Round One Heat One 1 QU 24.0w 24.06w

Women's 400 metres

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T(H) T(A) L
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Great Britain Final 4 52.5 52.57 7
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Great Britain Semi-Finals Heat One 3 QU 54.0 54.01
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Great Britain Round One Heat Three 3 QU 53.6 53.63
1972 Summer 27 München Athletics Great Britain Round One Heat Six 5 54.13 8

Women's 4 × 100 metres Relay

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Rank T(H) T(A) L
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Great Britain GBR Final 3 44.0 44.09 2
1964 Summer 20 Tokyo Athletics Great Britain GBR Round One Heat One 2 QU 44.9 44,96
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Great Britain GBR Final 7 43.7 43.78 5
1968 Summer 24 Ciudad de México Athletics Great Britain GBR Round One Heat Two 3 QU 43.9 43.98

Women's 4 × 400 metres Relay

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Rank T(A) ST
1972 Summer 27 München Athletics Great Britain GBR Final 5 3:28.74 52,0
1972 Summer 27 München Athletics Great Britain GBR Round One Heat Two 4 QU 3:30.05
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