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Inspiring Canadians - In Sport and Life

Honoured Member

RALPH HUTTON

Inducted in 1977

Member Details

Date of Birth: March 6, 1948
Place of Birth: Ocean Falls, British Columbia
Sport: Swimming
Member Category: Athlete

Career Highlights

1963

Pan-American Games - silver and bronze medals

1966

Commonwealth Game - 8 medals (1 gold, 5 silver, 2 bronze)

1967

Pan-American Games, gold medal, 200m backstroke (5 silver)

1968

Olympic Games, silver medal, 400m freestyle

World record, 400m freestyle

1970

Commonwealth Games, 3 silver

1971

Pan-American Games, 1 silver, 2 bronze

Honoured Member RALPH HUTTON
Inspire

Story

Today, the term "Iron Man" describes athletes capable of remarkable feats of endurance. But in the 1960s, Canada had only one "Iron Man," swimmer Ralph Hutton. Specializing in the freestyle and backstroke, Hutton set eleven national records and, in 1968 at the U.S. Nationals, established a world record in the 400m freestyle. Beginning in 1962, Hutton represented Canada at swim meets in three Olympic and Pan-American Games and two Commonwealth Games, winning medals in all but two Olympic Games. He won two medals in the 1963 Pan-Am Games and set a new Canadian record in the 200m backstroke at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Hutton burst onto the international scene, however, in 1966. At that year's Commonwealth Games in Kingston, Jamaica, he won eight medals and set seven Canadian records. He followed that up with six more medals (and six more Canadian records) at the 1967 Pan-Am Games, including individual gold in the 200m backstroke in a Games-record time. Hutton achieved Olympic success at Mexico City, winning silver in the 400m freestyle to go with two fourth-place finishes. Not surprisingly, Hutton was named Canada's outstanding male swimmer in 1966, 1967, and again in 1968. Hutton also swam at the 1972 Olympic Games and was part of the 800m freestyle relay team which set a Canadian record while placing sixth. This capped Hutton's competitive international career. He was the first Canadian swimmer ever named to three consecutive Olympic teams and the first to make the finals in three straight Games. Hutton won 24 medals in international competition and during his remarkable career made the finals in every international meet he entered, failing to win a medal only twice in those finals.


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