| Event type

100 metres Backstroke, Women

Date3 – 5 August 1948
LocationWembley Arena, Wembley, London
Participants24 from 16 countries

The cancellation of the 1940 and 1944 Games meant that Con Kint of Holland would never grace the Olympic stage. Her world record, set in 1939, would last for 21 years but Kint herself was long retired by the time the London Games came around. The favourite was the Dane, Karen Margrethe Harup, who had won the event at the 1947 European Championships. Harup proved to be a worthy champion as she broke the Olympic record in all three of her races. She finished over a second clear of Suzanne Zimmerman of the USA with Judy-Joy Davies taking bronze for Australia. Monique Berlioux, who was eliminated in the semi-finals was a member of the French Resistance during World War Two and later went on a career with the International Olympic Committee. She served as Director of the IOC between 1971 and 1995.

1Karen Margrethe HarupDEN1:15.6 (1 h2)1:15.5 (1 h1)1:14.4 (1)Gold
2Suzanne ZimmermanUSA1:16.8 (2 h2)1:16.8 (1 h2)1:16.0 (2)Silver
3Judy-Joy DaviesAUS1:16.4 (1 h3)1:17.8 (2 h2)1:16.7 (3)Bronze
4Ilona NovákHUN1:17.3 (2 h3)1:17.6 (2 h1)1:18.4 (4)
5Ria van der HorstNED1:18.7 (1 h1)1:18.2 (3 h2)1:18.8 (5)
6Dicky van EkrisNED1:19.3 (4 h3)1:18.2 (4 h1)1:18.9 (6)
7Muriel MellonUSA1:18.7 (2 h4)1:18.2 (3 h1)1:19.0 (7)
8Greetje GaillardNED1:18.2 (1 h4)1:18.4 (5 h1)1:19.1 (8)
4 h2 r2/3Helen YateGBR1:18.3 (3 h2)1:18.6 (4 h2)
5 h2 r2/3Barbara JensenUSA1:18.8 (3 h3)1:19.1 (5 h2)
6 h1 r2/3Cathie GibsonGBR1:19.7 (3 h4)1:18.6 (6 h1)
6 h2 r2/3Monique BerliouxFRA1:18.8 (3 h1)1:20.2 (6 h2)
7 h1 r2/3Ngaire LaneNZL1:18.8 (2 h1)1:19.0 (7 h1)
7 h2 r2/3Vera ElleryGBR1:20.9 (5 h3)1:20.8 (7 h2)
8 h1 r2/3Beryl MarshallARG1:20.9 (4 h2)1:20.7 (8 h1)
4 h1 r1/3Ingegärd FredinSWE1:21.2 (4 h1)– (DNS h2)
4 h4 r1/3Magda BrüggemannMEX1:21.4 (4 h4)
5 h1 r1/3Kolbrún ÓlafsdóttirISL1:25.6 (5 h1)
5 h2 r1/3Doris GontersweilerSUI1:26.2 (5 h2)
5 h4 r1/3Bea BallintijnNOR1:22.1 (5 h4)
6 h2 r1/3Joyce CourtCAN1:26.8 (6 h2)
6 h3 r1/3Liliana GonzalíasARG1:26.9 (6 h3)
6 h4 r1/3Edith de OliveiraBRA1:22.5 (6 h4)
7 h4 r1/3Ginette JanyFRA1:22.7 (7 h4)
DNSZsuzsa NádorHUN– (DNS h2)
DNSJ. T. SzemesHUN– (DNS h1)

Round One (4 August 1948 — 20:30)

Top three in each heat and the next four fastest advanced to the semi-finals.

Heat One

15Ria van der HorstNED1:18.7Q
24Ngaire LaneNZL1:18.8Q
33Monique BerliouxFRA1:18.8Q
46Ingegärd FredinSWE1:21.2q
57Kolbrún ÓlafsdóttirISL1:25.6
DNS1J. T. SzemesHUN

Heat Two

11Karen Margrethe HarupDEN1:15.6QOR
24Suzanne ZimmermanUSA1:16.8Q
36Helen YateGBR1:18.3Q
47Beryl MarshallARG1:20.9q
53Doris GontersweilerSUI1:26.2
62Joyce CourtCAN1:26.8
DNS5Zsuzsa NádorHUN

Heat Three

15Judy-Joy DaviesAUS1:16.4Q
26Ilona NovákHUN1:17.3Q
37Barbara JensenUSA1:18.8Q
43Dicky van EkrisNED1:19.3q
54Vera ElleryGBR1:20.9q
62Liliana GonzalíasARG1:26.9

Heat Four

12Greetje GaillardNED1:18.2Q
26Muriel MellonUSA1:18.7Q
37Cathie GibsonGBR1:19.7Q
45Magda BrüggemannMEX1:21.4
53Bea BallintijnNOR1:22.1
64Edith de OliveiraBRA1:22.5
71Ginette JanyFRA1:22.7

Semi-Finals (5 August 1948 — 14:00)

Top three in each heat and the next two fastest advanced to the final.

Heat One

15Karen Margrethe HarupDEN1:15.5QOR
24Ilona NovákHUN1:17.6Q
33Muriel MellonUSA1:18.2Q
48Dicky van EkrisNED1:18.2q1
56Greetje GaillardNED1:18.4q
62Cathie GibsonGBR1:18.6
77Ngaire LaneNZL1:19.0
81Beryl MarshallARG1:20.7

Heat Two

14Suzanne ZimmermanUSA1:16.8Q
25Judy-Joy DaviesAUS1:17.8Q
33Ria van der HorstNED1:18.2Q2
46Helen YateGBR1:18.6
52Barbara JensenUSA1:19.1
67Monique BerliouxFRA1:20.2
78Vera ElleryGBR1:20.8
DNS1Ingegärd FredinSWE

Final (5 August 1948 — 20:00)

15Karen Margrethe HarupDEN1:14.4OR
24Suzanne ZimmermanUSA1:16.0
33Judy-Joy DaviesAUS1:16.7
46Ilona NovákHUN1:18.4
51Ria van der HorstNED1:18.8
67Dicky van EkrisNED1:18.9
72Muriel MellonUSA1:19.0
88Greetje GaillardNED1:19.1