| Event type

400 metres, Women

Date15 – 17 October 1964
LocationKokuritsu Kyogijo, Shinjuku, Tokyo
Participants23 from 17 countries

This was the first Olympic 400 metres for women. The world record was held by Dan Shin-Geum of North Korea, but she was ineligible to compete. North Korea had participated at the 1963 Games of the New Emerging Forces (GANEFO), and athletes who had competed there were banned by the IAAF from competing at Tokyo. The favorite was likely Soviet Mariya Itkina who had won the 1958 and 1962 European Championships. Britain’s Ann Packer was also highly regarded. She had extra incentive as her fiancé, Robbie Brightwell, had hoped to medal in the men’s 400 but placed fourth. Australia’s Betty Cuthbert had won gold in the 100, 200, and 4×100 relay at the 1956 Olympic Games, when she was heralded as the “Golden Girl”. She was back, now in the 400 metres and her speed had to make the field respect her. In the final Cuthbert bolted to an early lead and was two metres ahead at the halfway point. Packer closed on her over the final straight but Cuthbert held on to win her fourth Olympic gold medal.

112Betty CuthbertAUS56.0 (3 h1)53.8 (2 h1)52.0 (1)GoldOR
255Ann PackerGBR53.1 (1 h3)52.7 (1 h1)52.2 (2)Silver
311Judy AmooreAUS53.8 (2 h3)53.3 (1 h2)53.4 (3)Bronze
4105Antónia MunkácsiHUN54.4 (1 h1)54.0 (3 h1)54.4 (4)
5197Mariya ItkinaURS54.9 (1 h2)53.5 (2 h2)54.6 (5)
6143Tilly van der ZwaardNED54.8 (2 h1)54.1 (3 h2)55.2 (6)
772Gertrud SchmidtGER55.1 (4 h3)54.2 (4 h2)55.4 (7)
844Évelyne LebretFRA54.8 (3 h3)54.5 (4 h1)55.5 (8)
5 h1 r2/353Joy GrievesonGBR56.8 (4 h1)54.8 (5 h1)
5 h2 r2/354Pat KippaxGBR55.5 (6 h2)54.4 (5 h2)
6 h1 r2/3123Una MorrisJAM55.3 (3 h2)54.9 (6 h1)
6 h2 r2/3221Janell SmithUSA55.5 (5 h2)54.5 (6 h2)
7 h1 r2/373Margret BuscherGER55.3 (2 h2)55.2 (7 h1)
7 h2 r2/3114Maeve KyleIRL55.4 (4 h2)55.3 (7 h2)
8 h1 r2/3241Kiyoki OgawaJPN57.6 (5 h1)57.1 (8 h1)
5 h3 r1/3106Olga KaziHUN56.5 (5 h3)– (DNS h2)
6 h1 r1/3113Stephie D'SouzaIND58.0 (6 h1)
6 h3 r1/3133Mary RajamaniMAS57.8 (6 h3)
7 h1 r1/374Erna MaisackGER58.6 (7 h1)
7 h2 r1/328Abby HoffmanCAN55.9 (7 h2)
7 h3 r1/3127Han Myeong-HuiKOR58.7 (7 h3)
8 h1 r1/3135Ramazangiin Aldaa-nyshMGL1:00.8 (8 h1)
8 h2 r1/3183Samruay CharonggoolTHA1:04.0 (8 h2)

Round One (15 October 1964 — 11:00)

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

Heat One

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
17Antónia MunkácsiHUN54.454.42QOR
26Tilly van der ZwaardNED54.854.86Q
33Betty CuthbertAUS56.0Q
44Joy GrievesonGBR56.8Q
51Kiyoki OgawaJPN57.6Q
62Stephie D'SouzaIND58.0
75Erna MaisackGER58.6
88Ramazangiin Aldaa-nyshMGL1:00.8

Heat Two

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
18Mariya ItkinaURS54.954.99Q
24Margret BuscherGER55.355.32Q
33Una MorrisJAM55.355.39Q
45Maeve KyleIRL55.455.42Q
52Janell SmithUSA55.555.56Q
61Pat KippaxGBR55.555.57q
76Abby HoffmanCAN55.955.98
87Samruay CharonggoolTHA1:04.0

Heat Three

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
15Ann PackerGBR53.153.18QOR
27Judy AmooreAUS53.853.85Q
34Évelyne LebretFRA54.8Q
41Gertrud SchmidtGER55.1Q
56Olga KaziHUN56.5Q
63Mary RajamaniMAS57.8
72Han Myeong-HuiKOR58.7

Semi-Finals (16 October 1964 — 14:15)

Top four in each heat advanced to the final.

Heat One

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
11Ann PackerGBR52.752.77QOR
25Betty CuthbertAUS53.8Q
33Antónia MunkácsiHUN54.0Q
44Évelyne LebretFRA54.5Q
57Joy GrievesonGBR54.8
68Una MorrisJAM54.9
72Margret BuscherGER55.2
86Kiyoki OgawaJPN57.1

Heat Two

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
11Judy AmooreAUS53.353.39Q
22Mariya ItkinaURS53.553.50Q
36Tilly van der ZwaardNED54.154.19Q
45Gertrud SchmidtGER54.254.27Q
53Pat KippaxGBR54.4
64Janell SmithUSA54.5
78Maeve KyleIRL55.3
DNS7Olga KaziHUN

Final (17 October 1964 — 15:40)

PosLaneAthleteNOCTime (H)Time (A)
12Betty CuthbertAUS52.052.01OR
26Ann PackerGBR52.252.20
33Judy AmooreAUS53.4
41Antónia MunkácsiHUN54.4
55Mariya ItkinaURS54.6
64Tilly van der ZwaardNED55.2
77Gertrud SchmidtGER55.4
88Évelyne LebretFRA55.5