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| Event type

4 x 100 metres Freestyle Relay, Women

Date4 – 6 August 1948
StatusOlympic
LocationWembley Arena, Wembley, London
Participants46 from 11 countries

After the individual 100m had been decided it seemed logical that the medals would be decided between four teams, Denmark, the USA, the Netherlands and Sweden. With a rejuvenated Greta Andersen included in their line-up, the Danes found themselves battling the Dutch for the gold medal as the last leg swimmers got under way. The United States and Great Britain trailed and appeared to be fighting only for the bronze but the last American swimmer was Ann Curtis. Curtis soon moved away from her British rival and began to make headway on the leaders. With just 15 metres to go she overtook the Dutch swimmer and with the crowd cheering wildly edged ever closer to Fritze Carstensen of Denmark. With a desperate final sprint Curtis touched the wall ahead of the Dane to break the Olympic record and clinch the championship. Curtis’ time of 1:04.4 was the fastest ever recorded though it could not be ratified as a world record because only the first leg of a relay is allowed to stand for record purposes

PosSwimmerNOCR1Final
1United StatesUSA4:34.1 (2 h1)4:29.2 (1)Gold
Marie CorridonThelma KalamaBrenda HelserAnn CurtisJackie LaVine (DNS)Pat Healy (DNS)
2DenmarkDEN4:33.5 (1 h1)4:29.6 (2)Silver
Eva RiiseKaren Margrethe HarupGreta AndersenFritze CarstensenElvi SvendsenGunvor Kraft-Borup (DNS)
3NetherlandsNED4:31.3 (1 h2)4:31.6 (3)Bronze
Irma SchuhmacherMargot MarsmanMarie-Louise VaessenHannie TermeulenWil Langerveld (DNS)
4Great BritainGBR4:36.1 (3 h1)4:34.7 (4)
Patricia NielsenMargaret WellingtonLillian PreeceCathie GibsonMargaret Girvan (DNS)Margaret Linton (DNS)
5HungaryHUN4:47.5 (3 h2)4:44.8 (5)
Mária LittomeritzkyIlona NovákJudit TemesÉva SzékelyÉva Novák (DNS)Zsuzsa Nádor (DNS)
6BrazilBRA4:51.4 (4 h2)4:49.1 (6)
Eleonora SchmittMaria da CostaTalita RodríguesPiedade Coutinho-TavaresEdith de Oliveira (DNS)
7FranceFRA4:50.0 (4 h1)4:49.8 (7)
Josette ArèneGisèle VallereyColette ThomasGinette JanyMarie Foucher-CreteauHuguette Chaleix (DNS)
AC r2/2SwedenSWE4:38.5 (2 h2)– (AC)DQ
Gisela ThidholmElisabeth AhlgrenMarianne LundquistIngegärd FredinMaj-Britt Ohlsson (DNS)
5 h1 r1/2ArgentinaARG4:59.5 (5 h1)
Enriqueta DuarteLiliana GonzalíasAdriana CamelliEileen Holt
5 h2 r1/2BelgiumBEL4:54.9 (5 h2)
Maria HuybrechtsMaria OeyenMaria Van Den BrandFernande CaroenIrène Possemiers (DNS)A. de Graef (DNS)
6 h1 r1/2CanadaCAN5:04.5 (6 h1)
Kay McNameeJoyce CourtVivian KingIrene Strong

Round One (4 August 1948 — 15:30)

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

Heat One

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTimeExchange (Pos)
12DenmarkDEN4:33.5QOR
Eva Riise– (–)
Elvi Svendsen– (–)
Fritze Carstensen– (–)
Greta Andersen– (–)
27United StatesUSA4:34.1Q
Marie Corridon– (–)
Thelma Kalama– (–)
Brenda Helser– (–)
Ann Curtis– (–)
34Great BritainGBR4:36.1Q
Margaret Wellington– (–)
Patricia Nielsen– (–)
Lillian Preece– (–)
Cathie Gibson– (–)
45FranceFRA4:50.0q
Josette Arène– (–)
Colette Thomas– (–)
Marie Foucher-Creteau– (–)
Ginette Jany– (–)
53ArgentinaARG4:59.5
Enriqueta Duarte– (–)
Liliana Gonzalías– (–)
Adriana Camelli– (–)
Eileen Holt– (–)
66CanadaCAN5:04.5
Kay McNamee– (–)
Joyce Court– (–)
Vivian King– (–)
Irene Strong– (–)

Heat Two

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTimeExchange (Pos)
14NetherlandsNED4:31.3QOR
Irma Schuhmacher– (–)
Margot Marsman– (–)
Marie-Louise Vaessen– (–)
Hannie Termeulen– (–)
23SwedenSWE4:38.5Q
Marianne Lundquist– (–)
Gisela Thidholm– (–)
Elisabeth Ahlgren– (–)
Ingegärd Fredin– (–)
36HungaryHUN4:47.5Q
Mária Littomeritzky– (–)
Judit Temes– (–)
Éva Székely– (–)
Ilona Novák– (–)
45BrazilBRA4:51.4q
Eleonora Schmitt– (–)
Maria da Costa– (–)
Talita Rodrígues– (–)
Piedade Coutinho-Tavares– (–)
52BelgiumBEL4:54.9
Maria Huybrechts– (–)
Maria Oeyen– (–)
Maria Van Den Brand– (–)
Fernande Caroen– (–)

Final (6 August 1948 — 21:00)

PosLaneSwimmerNOCTimeExchange (Pos)
16United StatesUSA4:29.2OR
Marie Corridon– (–)
Thelma Kalama– (–)
Brenda Helser– (–)
Ann Curtis– (–)
24DenmarkDEN4:29.6
Eva Riise– (–)
Karen Margrethe Harup– (–)
Greta Andersen– (–)
Fritze Carstensen– (–)
35NetherlandsNED4:31.6
Irma Schuhmacher– (–)
Margot Marsman– (–)
Marie-Louise Vaessen– (–)
Hannie Termeulen– (–)
43Great BritainGBR4:34.7
Patricia Nielsen– (–)
Margaret Wellington– (–)
Lillian Preece– (–)
Cathie Gibson– (–)
52HungaryHUN4:44.8
Mária Littomeritzky– (–)
Ilona Novák– (–)
Judit Temes– (–)
Éva Székely– (–)
61BrazilBRA4:49.1
Eleonora Schmitt– (–)
Maria da Costa– (–)
Talita Rodrígues– (–)
Piedade Coutinho-Tavares– (–)
78FranceFRA4:49.8
Josette Arène– (–)
Gisèle Vallerey– (–)
Colette Thomas– (–)
Ginette Jany– (–)
AC7SwedenSWEDQ
Gisela Thidholm– (–)
Elisabeth Ahlgren– (–)
Marianne Lundquist– (–)
Ingegärd Fredin– (–)