Female Olympic Champions: Sportswomen who made history

Female Olympic Champions: Sportswomen who made history
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Female Olympic Champions: Sportswomen who made history

How many Olympic champions can you name? A few.

OK, how many female Olympic champions?

If you know more than a handful, then you're doing well!  Although a lot of sportswomen aren't so well known to the public, they more than deserve recognition for their Olympic achievements.  

Many of them were pioneers in their discipline, like French tennis player Suzanne Lenglen and Ukrainian gymnast Larissa Latynina, yet these Olympic stars are forgotten all too soon. That's why we're taking a moment to look back at women who made their mark in the sporting world.

Like many things, the Olympic Games were long reserved for men.  It was only in 1900 that women were allowed to take part, thanks to International Olympic Committee founder Pierre de Coubertin.  That year, only 19 of 1225 competitors were women.

One of them was the mother of all female Olympic champions: British tennis star Charlotte Cooper, who came first in the tennis singles.
112 years later,  we're taking a stroll back in time to revisit some of the iconic names in female sporting history. 

Photo: L. Flessel, B. Fischer, S. Graf, K. Holmes ©montage aufeminin

The London Olympics 2012: Olympic special
Women in Focus Editor
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