Google honors runner Fanny Blankers-Koen with new Doodle

By Wade Sheridan  |  April 26, 2018 at 6:40 AM
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April 26 (UPI) -- Google is celebrating Olympic runner Fanny Blankers-Koen on what would have been her 100th birthday with a new Doodle.

Blankers-Koen, born near Baarn, the Netherlands in 1918, set a national record in the women's 800m at the age of 17 before competing at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin at the age of 18 where she placed fifth in the 4x100m and sixth in high jump.

Blankers-Koen returned to the Olympics at the 1948 London Games after the 1940 and 1944 Olympics were canceled. The runner, who had received criticism for competing instead of staying at home to take care of her two children, made history when she beat her opponents in the women's 200m by 0.7 seconds, a record that still stands today.

"But words couldn't break Blankers-Koen's stride. She captured four golds during the 1948 London Games, winning the 100m, 80m hurdles, 200m, and 4x100m relay to become the first woman to win four medals in a single Olympics. Her quick feet didn't just set records. Blankers-Koen's accomplishments flattened stereotypes of female athletes at the time, earning her the nickname 'The Flying Housewife,' Google said of her other accomplishments at the 1948 Olympics.

Google's homepage features an illustration of Blankers-Koen running at the Olympics as she breaks away from two opponents.

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