At a glance

14 Mar 1978 Maastricht, Netherlands
VDH, Hoogie, The Dutch Dolphin
193 cm / 80 kg 6'4'' / 176 pounds
Male
After narrowly missing the podium twice in Atlanta, Pieter van den Hoogenband broke through to the top in the next Olympiad. His first international titles came in 1999, when he won six gold medals at the European Championships in Istanbul. He confirmed his status as the best freestyle sprint swimmer at the Sydney Olympics. In a close race with home favourite Ian Thorpe, he won the 200 m freestyle in world record time. Two days later, in the Olympic semi-finals, he became the first man to swim the 100 m free in less than 48 seconds. He won the final...

After narrowly missing the podium twice in Atlanta, Pieter van den Hoogenband broke through to the top in the next Olympiad. His first international titles came in 1999, when he won six gold medals at the European Championships in Istanbul. He confirmed his status as the best freestyle sprint swimmer at the Sydney Olympics. In a close race with home favourite Ian Thorpe, he won the 200 m freestyle in world record time. Two days later, in the Olympic semi-finals, he became the first man to swim the 100 m free in less than 48 seconds. He won the final as well, beating two-time champion Aleksandr Popov.

In 2001 and 2003, Van den Hoogenband attempted to win a world title, but failed to do so. Throughout his career, he won 8 silver medals at the World Championships, but never a gold medal. He did retain his Olympic 100 m title in Athens, adding silver medals in the 200 and 4 x 100 relay. His career seemed over in 2005, when he was diagnosed with a hernia in his back, which had long been a painful area for the swimmer. But Van den Hoogenband fought back and celebrated his return with a European title in the 200 m freestyle in 2006. He then set his sights on winning a third consecutive 100 m title at the Beijing Olympics, but eventually finished just outside the medals. In December 2008, the swimming pool in Eindhoven where Van den Hoogenband had trained much of his career was named after him. Earlier in the year, Van den Hoogenband had lost his 100 m world record to Alain Bernard in the same pool.

Van den Hoogenband was named Dutch sportsman of the year three times (1999, 2000, 2004), World Swimmer of the Year (2000) and European Swimmer of the Year (1999, 2000, 2002 and 2004).

Pieter in numbers

4
Olympics
Olympics
7
medals
Gold medal:3 Silver medal:2 Bronze medal:2
  • Beijing
    Beijing 2008
    Games
    Results
    Sport
    Event
    Beijing
    Beijing 2008
    • 5
      Swimming
      100 metres Freestyle
    • 10
      Swimming
      4 x 100 metres Freestyle Relay
  • Athens
    Athens 2004
    Games
    Results
    Sport
    Event
    Athens
    Athens 2004
    • 17
      Swimming
      50 metres Freestyle
    • 1 Gold medal
      Swimming
      100 metres Freestyle
    • 2 Silver medal
      Swimming
      200 metres Freestyle
    • 2 Silver medal
      Swimming
      4 x 100 metres Freestyle Relay
  • Sydney
    Sydney 2000
    Games
    Results
    Sport
    Event
    Sydney
    Sydney 2000
    • 3 Bronze medal
      Swimming
      50 metres Freestyle
    • 1 Gold medal
      Swimming
      100 metres Freestyle
    • 1 Gold medal
      Swimming
      200 metres Freestyle
    • 3 Bronze medal
      Swimming
      4 x 200 metres Freestyle Relay
    • 4
      Swimming
      4 x 100 metres Medley Relay
  • Atlanta
    Atlanta 1996
    Games
    Results
    Sport
    Event
    Atlanta
    Atlanta 1996
    • 9
      Swimming
      50 metres Freestyle
    • 4
      Swimming
      100 metres Freestyle
    • 4
      Swimming
      200 metres Freestyle
    • 5
      Swimming
      4 x 100 metres Freestyle Relay
    • 7
      Swimming
      4 x 200 metres Freestyle Relay
    • 10
      Swimming
      4 x 100 metres Medley Relay

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