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| Event type

100 metres Backstroke, Men

Date9 – 13 July 1912
StatusOlympic
LocationSimstadion, Djurgårdsbrunnsviken, Stockholm
Participants18 from 7 countries
Olympic Record 1:24.6 WR / Arno Bieberstein GER / 17 July 1908

In an era when the United States did not contest an outdoor backstroke championship, Harry Hebner still dominated American backstroking. Over the indoor distance of 150 yards, he was national champion from 1910-1916. He rarely raced over 100 metres or the Imperial equivalent of 110 yards, but he held the American records for both 100 and 150 yards. The world record at the beginning of 1912 was held by Hungary’s András Baronyi, who had posted 1:18.8 at Budapest on 17 July 1911. But the world record was broken twice before the Stockholm Olympics, first by Germany’s Oscar Schiele with 1:18.4 at Brussels on 6 April, and then the mark was destroyed by Germany’s Otto Fahr, with 1:15.6 at Magdeburg on 29 April. Schiele was in Stockholm and competed in this event, but he was disqualified in heat one of round one.

Fahr’s world record was not threatened in any round. But the final came down to him and Hebner. After a false start, Hebner took an early lead and held off Fahr to win by slightly over one second. The Official Report noted, “Hebner, who kept his head well out of the water and was able to observe his opponents during the whole of the race, won without any difficulty.”

PosSwimmerNOCR1SFFinal
1Harry HebnerUSA1:21.0 (1 h1)1:20.8 (1 h1)1:21.2 (1)Gold
2Otto FahrGER1:22.0 (1 h2)1:21.8 (2 h1)1:22.4 (2)Silver
3Paul KellnerGER1:26.0 (2 h3)1:26.2 (2 h2)1:24.0 (3)Bronze
4András BaronyiHUN1:22.0 (1 h3)1:26.2 (3 h1)1:25.2 (4)
5Otto GrossGER1:24.0 (2 h1)1:26.0 (1 h2)1:25.8 (5)
3 h2 r2/3Bert HaresnapeGBR1:27.0 (1 h4)1:26.8 (3 h2)
4 h1 r2/3László SzentgróthyHUN1:26.6 (1 h5)1:26.4 (4 h1)
4 h2 r2/3Frank SandonGBR1:31.8 (2 h5)1:32.2 (4 h2)
5 h1 r2/3Erich SchultzeGER1:27.2 (2 h4)– (5 h1)
5 h2 r2/3Gunnar SundmanSWE1:31.2 (3 h4)1:35.0 (5 h2)
6 h1 r2/3George WebsterGBR1:29.4 (2 h2)– (6 h1)
3 h1 r1/3Åke BergmanSWE1:33.8 (3 h1)
3 h2 r1/3Hugo LundevallSWE1:46.8 (3 h2)
3 h3 r1/3Harry SvendsenNOR1:47.2 (3 h3)
4 h4 r1/3John JohnsenNOR1:34.2 (4 h4)
AC h1 r1/3Oskar SchieleGER– (AC h1)DQ
AC h2 r1/3János WenkHUN1:28.6 (AC h2)DQ
AC h3 r1/3Oscar GrégoireBEL1:29.8 (AC h3)DQ
DNSDaniel LehuFRA– (DNS h4)
DNSÉmile BangerterFRA– (DNS h3)
DNSHenri DuboisFRA– (DNS h2)
DNSVictor Pierre EggmanFRA– (DNS h1)
DNSMaurice QuintardFRA– (DNS h5)
DNSJames SlaneGBR– (DNS h1)
DNSAndreas AsimakopoulosGRE– (DNS h2)
DNSPaudely PsychaGRE– (DNS h4)
DNSNikolaus BartkóHUN– (DNS h1)
DNSIvan GéczyHUN– (DNS h1)
DNSJosef SelmecziHUN– (DNS h3)
DNSIstván WendelinHUN– (DNS h4)
DNSDavide BaiardoITA– (DNS h3)
DNSMario MassaITA– (DNS h1)
DNSVirgilio BellazzaITA– (DNS h5)
DNSAldo CigheriITA– (DNS h1)
DNSMario PortolongoITA– (DNS h4)
DNSGeorge GodfreyRSA– (DNS h4)
DNSViktor BaranovRUS– (DNS h1)
DNSAleksey AndreyevRUS– (DNS h4)
DNSPontus HansonSWE– (DNS h5)

Round One1 (9 – 10 July 1912)

Top two in each heat and the fastest third-place advanced to the semi-finals.

Heat One (9 July 1912 — 12:15)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Harry HebnerUSA1:21.0QOR
2Otto GrossGER1:24.0Q
3Åke BergmanSWE1:33.8
ACOskar SchieleGERDQ
DNSVictor Pierre EggmanFRA2
DNSJames SlaneGBR3
DNSNikolaus BartkóHUN4
DNSIvan GéczyHUN5
DNSMario MassaITA6
DNSAldo CigheriITA7
DNSViktor BaranovRUS8

Heat Two (9 July 1912 — 12:25)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Otto FahrGER1:22.0Q
2George WebsterGBR1:29.4Q
3Hugo LundevallSWE1:46.8
ACJános WenkHUN1:28.6DQ
DNSHenri DuboisFRA
DNSAndreas AsimakopoulosGRE

Heat Three (9 July 1912 — 12:30)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1András BaronyiHUN1:22.0Q
2Paul KellnerGER1:26.0Q
3Harry SvendsenNOR1:47.2
ACOscar GrégoireBEL1:29.8DQ
DNSÉmile BangerterFRA
DNSJosef SelmecziHUN
DNSDavide BaiardoITA

Heat Four (10 July 1912 — 13:00)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Bert HaresnapeGBR1:27.0Q
2Erich SchultzeGER1:27.2Q
3Gunnar SundmanSWE1:31.2q
4John JohnsenNOR1:34.2
DNSDaniel LehuFRA9
DNSPaudely PsychaGRE10
DNSIstván WendelinHUN11
DNSMario PortolongoITA12
DNSGeorge GodfreyRSA13
DNSAleksey AndreyevRUS14

Heat Five (10 July 1912 — 13:05)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1László SzentgróthyHUN1:26.6Q
2Frank SandonGBR1:31.8Q
DNSMaurice QuintardFRA
DNSVirgilio BellazzaITA
DNSPontus HansonSWE

Semi-Finals (10 July 1912)

Top two in each heat and the fastest third-place advanced to the final.

Heat One (19:00)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Harry HebnerUSA1:20.8QOR
2Otto FahrGER1:21.8Q
3András BaronyiHUN1:26.2q
4László SzentgróthyHUN1:26.4
5Erich SchultzeGER
6George WebsterGBR

Heat Two (19:05)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Otto GrossGER1:26.0Q
2Paul KellnerGER1:26.2Q
3Bert HaresnapeGBR1:26.8
4Frank SandonGBR1:32.2
5Gunnar SundmanSWE1:35.0

Final (13 July 1912 — 19:40)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTime
1Harry HebnerUSA1:21.2
2Otto FahrGER1:22.4
3Paul KellnerGER1:24.0
4András BaronyiHUN1:25.2
5Otto GrossGER1:25.8