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Swimming at the 1952 Helsinki Summer Games:

Women's 400 metres Freestyle

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Host City: Helsinki, Finland
Venue(s): Helsinki Swimming Stadium, Helsinki
Date Started: July 31, 1952
Date Finished: August 2, 1952

Gold: HUN Valéria Gyenge
Silver: HUN Éva Gérard-Novák
Bronze: USA Evelyn Kawamoto


The 400m Freestyle was destined to be a clash between Hungary, the USA and Denmark. The return of world record holder [Ragnhild Hveger-Andersen], after a sixteen year Olympic absence, added to the talents of European champion [Grete Andersen] meant that Denmark would be well represented whilst a trio of talented Hungarians and the American pairing of [Evelyn Kawamoto] and [Carolyn Green] could not be discounted. For nearly 300 metres the impossible seemed about to happened as Hveger-Andersen, at 32 and coming back from a 7 year retirement, held off her younger rivals but her early efforts were in vain as four swimmers passed her. The gold medal was decided between two Hungarians, [Valéria Gyenge] and [Éva Novák], with Gyenge edging her more experienced team-mate for the victory.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalSemi-FinalsRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Valéria Gyenge 19 Hungary HUN Gold OR
2 Éva Gérard-Novák 22 Hungary HUN Silver
3 Evelyn Kawamoto 18 United States USA Bronze
4 Carolyn Green 18 United States USA
5 Ragnhild Hveger 31 Denmark DEN
6 Éva Székely 25 Hungary HUN
7 Ana María Schultz 16 Argentina ARG
8 Greta Andersen 25 Denmark DEN
5 h1 r2/3 Joan Harrison 16 South Africa RSA
5 h2 r2/3 Daphne Wilkinson 20 Great Britain GBR
6 h1 r2/3 Judy-Joy Davies 24 Australia AUS
6 h2 r2/3 Delia Meulenkamp 19 United States USA
7 h1 r2/3 Piedade Coutinho-Tavares 32 Brazil BRA
7 h2 r2/3 Denise Norton 18 Australia AUS
8 h2 r2/3 Huguette Peeters 15 Belgium BEL
3 h1 r1/3 Mette Ove Petersen 18 Denmark DEN
3 h3 r1/3 Colette Thomas 23 France FRA
4 h1 r1/3 Grace Wood 19 Great Britain GBR
4 h3 r1/3 Elisabeth Rechlin 22 Germany GER
4 h4 r1/3 Ingegerd Fredin 21 Sweden SWE
5 h1 r1/3 Kay McNamee 21 Canada CAN
5 h2 r1/3 Lillian Preece 24 Great Britain GBR
5 h3 r1/3 Hannie Termeulen 23 Netherlands NED
5 h4 r1/3 Ginette Jany-Sendral 20 France FRA
5 h5 r1/3 Marianne Lundquist 20 Sweden SWE
6 h1 r1/3 Geertje Wielema 17 Netherlands NED
6 h2 r1/3 Sybille Verckist 17 Belgium BEL
6 h3 r1/3 Gladys Priestley 14 Canada CAN
6 h4 r1/3 Irma Heijting-Schuhmacher 27 Netherlands NED
6 h5 r1/3 Josette Arène 27 France FRA
7 h2 r1/3 Ritva Järvinen 19 Finland FIN
7 h3 r1/3 Cynthia Eager 15 Hong Kong HKG
7 h4 r1/3 Sadako Yamashita 19 Japan JPN
7 h5 r1/3 Misako Tamura 18 Japan JPN