Host City: Los Angeles, United States
Venue(s): Olympic Park Swimming Stadium, Los Angeles, California
Date Started: August 6, 1932
Date Finished: August 8, 1932
|Silver:||Willy den Ouden|
[Helene Madison] had emerged as the dominant force in women’s swimming over the previous two years, breaking record after record and was voted the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year for 1931. Madison’s progressed to the final but her semi-final swim, where she faded after a strong start and finished in a time that would have seen fail to qualify from the other semi-final, brought a moment of doubt. The 14 year old [Willy den Ouden] from the Netherlands had broken the Olympic record in reaching the final and looked set to mount a strong challenge to Madison. The American started the final strongly and built up a clear lead but with 25 metres to go she clipped the lane dividers and lost speed. Regaining her momentum, she pushed on to the end and finished ahead of her Dutch rival.