Pieter Cornelis Martijn van den Hoogenband (born 14 March 1978), born in Maastricht, Limburg, The Netherlands, is a former Dutch swimmer, a three-time Olympic champion who competed in four Olympics. He is widely regarded as “The Flying Dutchman” due to his expertise in sprint events and for being Dutch.
Greatest Sporting Achievements
Van den Hoogenband is a freestyle stroke specialist. He won three gold medals in the 100m and 200m freestyle event at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and two bronze medals in the 50m freestyle and the 4x200m freestyle. He also won a gold medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics for the 100m freestyle and two silver medals for the 200m freestyle and 4x100m freestyle. He received 13 World Championship medals, including 9 silver, 2 bronze and 1 gold for different swimming events. Pieter van den Hoogenband also competed at the Goodwill Games, winning 2 gold and 1 bronze medals during the 1998 New York Games and 1 bronze medal during the 2001 Brisbane Goodwill Games. He took home more than 25 European Championship medals from 1998 until 2008.
Why Was He So Good?
Pieter van den Hoogenband confirmed his status as the best freestyle sprint swimmer at all games and championships, just in a close race with Ian Thorpe. He always set his sights on winning. To this day, he continues to be one of the Netherlands’ most well-known swimmers.
What You May Not Know
- After his retirement, he continued to swim recreationally and acted on a couple of swimming committees.
- He dated Ranomi Kromowidjojo, who’s also an elite swimmer, after separating from Minouche Smit who’s also a swimmer.
- Van den Hoogenband remains to be involved in the swimming industry including in volunteering for charities via sports.
- He holds several world records for World Championships without winning.
Was he a legend?
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- Pieter van den Hoogenband' autobiography Pieter van den Hoogenband: Beneath the Surface
- Hero Rating for Pieter van den Hoogenband
- Profile of one of his past rivals in the pool, Ian Thorpe
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