Host City: Sydney, Australia
Venue(s): Sydney International Aquatic Centre, Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales
Date Started: September 17, 2000
Date Finished: September 18, 2000
|Gold:||Pieter van den Hoogenband|
[Ian Thorpe] was world record holder at the distance and had just thrilled the Australian nation by firstly winning the 400 metre freestyle and then anchoring the home team to a thrilling relay victory.
In the eyes of the home crowd he seemed unbeatable but in the semi-final his record was broken by [Pieter van den Hoogenband], the Dutchman who been the star of the 1999 European Championships In the next race Thorpe responded with a time just 0.02 seconds off the new mark and the stage was set for a titanic struggle between the two men.
In the early stages of the final the two were joined at the front of the race by American [Josh Davis] and the three pulled away from the rest. Thorpe led at 50 metres but âHoogieâ, as he became known to the Australian public, came back to lead at halfway and while Thorpe tried mightily to close on the Dutchman, he could not do so and van den Hoogenband took the Olympic title. Davis paid for his attempt to stay with the pace and was overtaken for bronze by [Massimiliano Rosolino]. For his performances in Sydney Pieter van den Hoogenband was named the Dutch Sportsman of the Year for 2000.