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Swimming at the 1900 Paris Summer Games:

Men's 200 metres Freestyle

Swimming at the 1900 Summer Games: Next Summer Games


Host City: Paris, France
Venue(s): Seine, Courbevoie Bridge – Asnières Bridge, Paris
Date Started: August 11, 1900
Date Finished: August 12, 1900

Gold: AUS Fred Lane
Silver: HUN Zoltán von Halmay
Bronze: AUT Karl Ruberl


This event should have been a contest between [Fred Lane] of Australia and [John Henry "Rob" Derbyshire] of Great Britain. Lane was Australian champion at 100 yards in 1898, New Zealand champion at 220 yards and 440 yards in 1899, and British champion at 100 yards (1902), 220 yards (1899-1900, 1902), and 440 yards (1899). At the Olympics, he actually competed with the British team. Derbyshire was the British 100 yard champion from 1898-1901, and had won the 220 yard titled in 1898. In 1900, Lane and Derbyshire tied for the British 220 yard championship. Unfortunately, Derbyshire was sick with a stomach virus and elected not to compete in Paris, which left Britain’s top entrant as [Robert Crawshaw], who was primarily a breaststroke and backstroke specialist. In Derbyshire’s absence, Hungary’s [Zoltán von Halmay] was Lane’s chief competition.

Both Halmay and Lane qualified easily, although the fastest time in the heats was posted by Austria’s [Karl Ruberl] with 2:22.6 in the fifth heat. In the final, held the next day, Lane won quite easily besting Halmay by over six seconds. The times for the race are very quick for the time, as the race was swum downstream in the River Seine. None could be considered for record purposes.

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