Athletics at the 1988 Summer Olympics – Women's 400 metres hurdles

The Women's 400 metres Hurdles at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea had an entrylist of 35 competitors, with five qualifying heats and two semifinals (16) before the final (8) took place on Wednesday September 28, 1988.[1]

Women's 400 metres hurdles
at the Games of the XXIV Olympiad
VenueOlympic Stadium
Dates25 September 1988 (heats)
27 September 1988 (semi-finals)
28 September 1988 (final)
Competitors35 from 25 nations
Winning time53.17 OR
Medalists
Debbie Flintoff-King
 Australia
Tatyana Ledovskaya
 Soviet Union
Ellen Fiedler
 East Germany

In 1987, the former world record holder Sabine Busch of the GDR, improved her best to 53.24 seconds, before going on to win the World Championship title in Rome in 53.62 secs, with Debbie Flintoff-King of Australia second, GDR team-mate Cornelia Ullrich third, and Jamaica's Sandra Farmer fourth. Both Ullrich and Farmer, who was now competing for the USA as Sandra Farmer-Patrick, failed to make it to Seoul. Farmer-Patrick was disqualified in her semifinal at the US Olympic trials for a lane infringement, while Ullrich missed out on a spot on the GDR Olympic team to Ellen Fiedler and Susanne Losch.

In Seoul, Fiedler set a new Olympic record in the heats, running 54.58 secs. Flintoff-King then further improved the Olympic record to 54.00 in the first semifinal, finishing just ahead of the little-known Soviet Tatyana Ledovskaya, who ran 54.01. Fiedler won the second semifinal in 54.28, with world champion Busch fourth.

In the Final, Ledovskaya (lane 3) made the fastest start and still held a narrow lead at the eighth hurdle, with Fiedler (lane 6) second, Busch (lane 7) third and Flintoff-King (lane 5) back in fifth. By the tenth hurdle, Ledovskaya still led from Fiedler, with Flintoff-King closing and moving into third ahead of Bush. Flintoff-King continued to close on the run-in and passed Ledovskaya in the final stride, winning in the new Olympic record time of 53.17, to move to second on the world all-time list. Ledovskaya took the silver in 53.18, with Fiedler holding off Busch for the bronze, running 53.63 to Busch's 53.69. With six of the top seven running personal bests, the Seoul final rewrote the all-time list, with fifth-placed Sally Gunnell (54.03) and sixth-placed Gudrun Abt (54.04), moving to number 10 and 11 on the all-time list.

Medalists

GoldDebbie Flintoff-King
 Australia
SilverTatyana Ledovskaya
 Soviet Union
BronzeEllen Fiedler
 East Germany

Records

These were the standing World and Olympic records (in seconds) prior to the 1988 Summer Olympics.

World Record 52.94 Marina Stepanova Stuttgart (FGR) September 17, 1986
Olympic Record 54.61 Nawal El Moutawakel Los Angeles (USA) August 8, 1984

The following Olympic records were set during this competition.

DateEventAthleteTimeORWR
September 25, 1988Quarterfinal Ellen Fiedler (GDR)54.58 sOR
September 26, 1988Semifinal Debbie Flintoff-King (AUS)54.00 sOR
September 28, 1988Final Debbie Flintoff-King (AUS)53.17 sOR

Final

RANK FINAL TIME
 Debbie Flintoff-King (AUS) 53.17(OR)
 Tatyana Ledovskaya (URS) 53.18
 Ellen Fiedler (GDR) 53.63
4.  Sabine Busch (GDR) 53.69
5.  Sally Gunnell (GBR) 54.03
6.  Gudrun Abt (FRG) 54.04
7.  Tatyana Kourochkina (URS) 54.39
8.  LaTanya Sheffield (USA) 55.32

Semi finals

RANK FINAL HEAT 1
1.  Debbie Flintoff-King (AUS) 54.00(OR)
2.  Tatyana Ledovskaya (URS) 54.01
3.  LaTanya Sheffield (USA) 54.36
4.  Sally Gunnell (GBR) 54.48
5.  Anita Protti (SUI) 54.56
6.  Susanne Losch (GDR) 55.56
7.  Genowefa Błaszak (POL) 56.76
8.  Gretha Tromp (NED) 57.57


RANK HEAT 2 TIME
1.  Ellen Fiedler (GDR) 54.28
2.  Tatyana Kourochkina (URS) 54.46
3.  Gudrun Abt (FRG) 54.53
4.  Sabine Busch (GDR) 54.71
5.  Cristina Pérez (ESP) 55.23
6.  Elaine McLaughlin (GBR) 55.91
7.  Schowonda Williams (USA) 56.71
8.  Chantal Beaugeant (FRA) 56.94

Qualifying heats

RANK HEAT 1 TIME
1.  Susanne Losch (GDR) 55.90
2.  Tatyana Ledovskaya (URS) 55.91
3.  Elaine McLaughlin (GBR) 56.11
4.  Rose Tata-Muya (KEN) 56.18
5.  Marie Womplou (CIV) 57.35
6.  Christine Wynn (CAN) 58.00
7.  P.T. Usha (IND) 59.55


RANK HEAT 2 TIME
1.  Sabine Busch (GDR) 55.96
2.  Gretha Tromp (NED) 56.11
3.  Genowefa Błaszak (POL) 56.18
4.  Jennifer Laurendet (AUS) 56.44
5.  Rosey Edeh (CAN) 56.59
6.  Ruth Kyalisiima (UGA) 59.62
7.  Nenita Adan (PHI) 1:01.92


RANK HEAT 3 TIME
1.  Ellen Fiedler (GDR) 54.58(OR)
2.  Anita Protti (SUI) 54.81
3.  Tatyana Kurochkina (URS) 55.04
4.  Latanya Sheffield (USA) 55.61
5.  Maria Usifo (NGR) 55.99
6.  Helga Halldórsdóttir (ISL) 58.99
7.  Kim Soon-Ja (KOR) 59.78


RANK HEAT 4 TIME
1.  Debbie Flintoff-King (AUS) 54.99
2.  Cristina Pérez (ESP) 55.29
3.  Sally Gunnell (GBR) 55.44
4.  Irmgard Trojer (ITA) 55.74
5.  Leslie Maxie (USA) 57.60
6.  Barbara Johnson (IRL) 58.61
7.  Chang Fen-Hwa (TPE) 1:00.16


RANK HEAT 5 TIME
1.  Gudrun Abt (FRG) 55.72
2.  Schowonda Williams (USA) 55.98
3.  Chantal Beaugeant (FRA) 56.03
4.  Sally Hamilton-Fleming (AUS) 56.08
5.  Liliana Chalá (ECU) 57.15
6.  Semra Aksu (TUR) 57.20
7.  Simone Laidlow (GBR) 59.28

See also

References

  1. "Athletics at the 1988 Seoul Summer Games: Women's 400 metres Hurdles". sports-reference.com. Retrieved 7 October 2017.
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