Kornelia Ender

Kornelia Ender (later Matthes now Grummt, born 25 October 1958 in Plauen, Bezirk Karl-Marx-Stadt) is a former East German swimmer who at the 1976 Summer Olympics became the first woman swimmer to win four gold medals at a single Olympic Games, all in world record times. It was later proven that the East German team doctors had systematically administered steroids to their athletes[1] (albeit without the athletes' knowledge). As she had exhibited symptoms of steroid use in 1976 (deep voice, overdeveloped body), strong suspicion was cast on the validity of Ender's accomplishments.

Kornelia Ender
Kornelia Ender in 1973
Personal information
NationalityEast German
Born (1958-10-25) 25 October 1958
Plauen, East Germany – now Saxony, Germany
Height1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)
Weight59 kg (130 lb)
StrokesFreestyle, butterfly, medley
ClubSV Halle

Ender trained from a young age and won her first Olympic medals as a 13-year-old at the 1972 Olympics in Munich: three silver medals, including one in the 200 m individual medley, finishing behind Australia's Shane Gould. Over the following years she broke 32 world records in individual events, including the four at the Montreal Games. In 1991, she addressed the long-held suspicions about her physical condition at the 1976 Games, acknowledging that team doctors and coaches had given her numerous injections of drugs over the preceding months (cf. doping in East Germany). Ender said that she did not know at the time, nor had she ever subsequently found out, exactly what the drugs were. She said she was told only that the drugs would help her "regenerate and recuperate" and therefore, although she was surprised by the muscle mass she added, she nonetheless attributed it simply to her rigorous training.

When she became suspicious and refused to take chlorodehydromethyltestosterone in 1977 she was banned from the team by the Marxist authorities.[2]

Ender was married for four years to East German backstroke swimmer and multiple Olympic champion Roland Matthes. She is now married to former East German – German track and field athlete and bobsledder Steffen Grummt.

See also


Preceded by
Mayumi Aoki
Rosemarie Kother
Women's 100 metre butterfly
world record holder (long course)

14 April 1973 – 21 August 1974
9 June 1975 – 28 August 1977
Succeeded by
Rosemarie Kother
Christiane Knacke
Preceded by
Shane Gould
Ulrike Tauber
Women's 200 metre individual medley
world record holder (long course)

13 April 1973 – 4 September 1973
5 June 1976 – 10 July 1977
Succeeded by
Andrea Hubner
Ulrike Tauber
Preceded by
Karin Janz
East German Sportswoman of the Year
Succeeded by
Rosemarie Ackermann
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