You Are Here > > > > > Women's 400 metres

Athletics at the 1976 Montréal Summer Games:

Women's 400 metres

Athletics at the 1976 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games ▪ Next Summer Games


Host City: Montréal, Canada
Venue(s): Olympic Stadium, Olympic Park, Montréal, Québec
Date Started: July 25, 1976
Date Finished: July 29, 1976

Gold: POL Irena Szewińska-Kirszenstein
Silver: GDR Christina Brehmer-Lathan
Bronze: GDR Ellen Strophal-Streidt


[Irena Szewińska-Kirszenstein] had started out as a long jumper and short sprinter but in the mid-70s turned her attention to the 400 metres. In 1974 she became the first woman to run 400 metres in under 50 seconds, recording 49.9 at the Kusociński Memorial meet in Warszawa. In May 1976 [Christina Brehmer] (GDR) broke that record running 49.77 in Dresden, but Szewińska-Kirszenstein took the record back shortly before the Olympics, running 49.75, again at the Kusociński Memorial. In the final, the race was close for 300 metres but Szewińska-Kirszenstein blasted the last 100 metres and won by almost 10 metres, Brehmer coming in second. The time was a world record 49.29. Szewińska-Kirszenstein later became a member of the IOC, but the first woman to become an IOC Member was Finland’s [Pirjo Häggman], who placed fourth in this race.

View a Phase of this EventFinal StandingsFinalSemi-FinalsQuarter-FinalsRound One

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Irena Szewińska-Kirszenstein 30 Poland POL Gold WR
2 Christina Brehmer-Lathan 18 East Germany GDR Silver
3 Ellen Strophal-Streidt 23 East Germany GDR Bronze
4 Pirjo Wilmi-Häggman 25 Finland FIN
5 Rosalyn Bryant 20 United States USA
6 Sheila Ingram 19 United States USA
7 Riitta Salin 25 Finland FIN
8 Debra Sapenter 24 United States USA
5 h1 r3/4 Beth Nail 20 Australia AUS
5 h2 r3/4 Nadezhda Kolesnikova-Ilyina 27 Soviet Union URS
6 h1 r3/4 Liudmyla Aksenova 29 Soviet Union URS
6 h2 r3/4 Verna Burnard 19 Australia AUS
7 h1 r3/4 Christiane Casapicola-Wildschek 22 Austria AUT
7 h2 r3/4 Rita Jahn-Wilden 28 West Germany FRG
8 h2 r3/4 Nataliya Sokolova 26 Soviet Union URS
3 h4 r2/4 Marita Koch 19 East Germany GDR
5 h1 r2/4 Dagmar Fuhrmann 22 West Germany FRG
5 h2 r2/4 Gladys Taylor 23 Great Britain GBR
5 h3 r2/4 Verona Bernard-Elder 23 Great Britain GBR
5 h4 r2/4 Donna Murray-Hartley 21 Great Britain GBR
6 h1 r2/4 Judy Canty 25 Australia AUS
6 h2 r2/4 Marika Eklund-Lindholm 28 Finland FIN
6 h3 r2/4 Rosine Wallez 19 Belgium BEL
6 h4 r2/4 Rita Bottiglieri 23 Italy ITA
7 h1 r2/4 Lorna Forde 24 Barbados BAR
7 h2 r2/4 Joyce Sadowick-Yakubowich 23 Canada CAN
7 h3 r2/4 Silvia Hollmann 21 West Germany FRG
7 h4 r2/4 Regina Berg 17 Belgium BEL
8 h1 r2/4 Rachelle Campbell 19 Canada CAN
8 h3 r2/4 Ruth Williams-Simpson 26 Jamaica JAM
8 h4 r2/4 Marg Stride 21 Canada CAN
4 h3 r1/4 Marilyn Neufville 23 Jamaica JAM
6 h2 r1/4 Helen Blake 25 Jamaica JAM
6 h3 r1/4 Jelica Pavličić 22 Yugoslavia YUG
6 h5 r1/4 Helen Ritter 18 Liechtenstein LIE
7 h2 r1/4 Ileana Hocking 17 Puerto Rico PUR
7 h4 r1/4 Céléstine N'Drin 12 Cote d'Ivoire CIV
7 h6 r1/4 Rose-Marie Gauthier 21 Haiti HAI