Hannah Wilson

Hannah Jane Arnett Wilson (Chinese: 韋漢娜; pinyin: Wèi Hànnà; Jyutping: wai6 hon3 naa4; born 10 March 1989) is a Hong Kong retired amateur swimmer. She is a three-time Olympic swimmer for Hong Kong, having swum at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, and 2012 Summer Olympics in London. She has won two career Universiade gold medals. As of July 11, 2009, Wilson currently holds 10 Hong Kong records and two Universiade records in swimming.

Hannah Wilson
Hannah Wilson (2009).JPG
Hannah Wilson in 2009.
Personal information
Full nameHannah Jane Arnett Wilson
National team Hong Kong
Born (1989-03-10) 10 March 1989 (age 32)
Hong Kong
Height1.66 m (5 ft 5 in)
Weight61 kg (134 lb)
StrokesButterfly, freestyle
College teamUniversity of California, Berkeley
Medal record
Women's swimming
Representing Hong Kong
Asian Games
Bronze medal – third place 2006 Doha 4×100 m Freestyle
Summer Universiade
Gold medal – first place 2009 Belgrade 100 m Freestyle
Gold medal – first place 2009 Belgrade 100 m Butterfly
East Asian Games
Silver medal – second place 2009 Hong Kong 4x100 m Freestyle
Silver medal – second place 2009 Hong Kong 4x200 m Freestyle
Bronze medal – third place 2009 Hong Kong 50 m Freestyle
Bronze medal – third place 2009 Hong Kong 100 m Freestyle
Bronze medal – third place 2009 Hong Kong 100 m Butterfly
Bronze medal – third place 2009 Hong Kong 4x100 m Medley

However, she struggled but eventually received the International Olympic Committee's permission to race in the 2004 Summer Olympics. Originally the IOC's policy would have barred Wilson from representing Hong Kong (she held a British passport, and being still a minor she could not renounce her British citizenship), which was a cause for distress throughout Hong Kong.[1] She has since renounced her British citizenship to take up Chinese citizenship and a Hong Kong SAR passport in her pursuit to represent Hong Kong in swimming for at least the next decade.[2]

At the 2006 Asian Games, she was a member of the bronze medal-winning team in the women's 4 × 100 m freestyle relay.

She is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley,[3][4][5][6] after attending Peak School from 1994 to 2000 and Island School from 2000 to 2007. She was recommended to attend the University of California, Berkeley by her 2006 Asian Games bronze medal-winning teammate Tsai Hiu Wai, who was the former swimming captain of the California Golden Bears. Her college teammates include 2008 Summer Olympics 100 m backstroke gold medalist Natalie Coughlin and 4 × 100 m freestyle relay silver medalist Emily Silver. The California Golden Bears are coached by Teri McKeever, the United States assistant coach at the 2004 Summer Olympics.

She retired from competitive swimming following the 2012 Olympics.[7] She now works in Hong Kong.


• A-Level Subjects: Physical Education, Geography, Psychology, (Biology AS)

• Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology

Cal SuccessEdit

• 2008 All-American (100-yard fly; 200-yard free relay; 400-yard free relay)

• Swam a lifetime best 52.85 in the 100 fly at the 2008 NCAA Championships final to earn All-America honors.

• Was on the NCAA runner-up 200 free relay quartet (1:27.52, a new school record) at the 2008 NCAA Championships.

• Was the third leg of a foursome that set a Cal dual meet record with a 1:32.22 in the 200 free relay (first-place finish) at UCLA (2/2/08).

• Was on the foursome that set a new Pac-10 meet record 3:13.22 in the 400 free relay at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships.

• Also on the quartet that established a new Cal dual meet record in the 400 free relay with a time of 3:16.54 at the Stanford dual meet (2/16/08).

• Clocked personal bests in the 100 free (48.84) and the 50 free (22.57) at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships.

• Her personal marks in the 50 free (22.57) and 100 free (48.84) rank sixth and eighth respectively on Cal's all-time performance charts.

Best Cal Times (In Yards)Edit

50 free 22.57 (2008 Pac-10s) 100 free 48.84 (2008 Pac-10s) 200 free 1:48.37 (2/16/08 at Stanford) 100 fly 52.85 (2008 NCAAs) 200 fly 1:59.78 (2007 Hoosierland)

International SuccessEdit

  • In addition to the 2012 London Games,[8] also represented Hong Kong at the 2008 Beijing Games and 2004 Olympics in Athens.
  • Holds Hong Kong records for the 100 free (55.32); 50 free (26.03) and the 100 fly; 59.35.
  • Competed in the 2005 and 2007 World Championships (Montreal and Melbourne, respectively); also competed in the 2006 Pan-Pacific Championships.
  • Won the bronze medal in 4 × 100 m freestyle relay at the 2006 Asian Games.
  • Won 2 gold medals at the 2009 Universiade World Student Games in 100m Freestyle and 100m Butterfly.
  • Her success has led to her become the third most searched name on Yahoo HK.

2004 Summer OlympicsEdit

Wilson was the only caucasian on the Hong Kong Olympic squad and made her inaugural Olympics in 2004 at the age of 15.[citation needed]

2006 Asian GamesEdit

Won bronze medal in the women's 4 × 100 m free relay with Tsai Hiu Wai, Lee Leong Kwai and Sze Hang Yu.

2008 Summer OlympicsEdit

Competed in the 2008 Summers in Beijing in the 100 fly and 100 free events ... swam a new Hong Kong record (placed 30th overall) with a 59.35 in the 100m fly heats and recorded a new Hong Kong record in the 100 free with a time of 55.32.

2009 UniversiadeEdit

In a first ever for Hong Kong, Wilson won a 2 gold medals at the 2009 Summer Universiade World Student Games in Belgrade, Serbia. She won the 100 metres women’s freestyle in 54.35 seconds breaking 2008 Summer Olympics Britta Steffen's Universiade record by 0.01 seconds. The next day after her 100m freestyle success, she won her 100m butterfly semi-final in 58.52 seconds to break 2004 Summer Olympics 200m butterfly gold medalist Otylia Jędrzejczak's Universiade record. A day later she won her second gold medal in the 100 metres women's butterfly in a record time of 58.24 seconds to smash her own record by 0.28 seconds. In the 50m freestyle qualifier she broke the Hong Kong record with a time of 25.99 seconds. In the semi-finals she swam a new Hong Kong record of 25.63 pushing forward the old record time by 0.37 seconds. However, she misses out on the finals after finishing 11th in the semi-finals. She becomes the first HK athlete to win a medal – and a gold at the Universiade. [9][10][11][12]


  1. ^ Sallay, Alvin (2004-02-29). "Olympic chiefs shut out top HK athletes: New rule requires SAR passport for all competitors at Athens". Asia Africa Intelligence Wire. Retrieved 2008-03-24.
  2. ^ The Wall Street Journal https://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2012/07/11/2012-olympic-profile-hannah-wilson-swims-for-hong-kong/. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ http://www.calbears.com/sports/w-swim/mtt/wilson_hannah00.html%7Cpublisher=CalBears.com[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Cal Signs Eight New Golden Bears". CalBears.com. 2006-11-17. Archived from the original on 2012-07-07. Retrieved 2008-03-24.
  5. ^ "Olympic Q&A with Hannah Wilson – Athens veteran talks about 2004, Hong Kong, coming to the United States". calbears.cstv.com. 2008-07-28. Archived from the original on 2008-08-11. Retrieved 2008-08-11.
  6. ^ "Cal Athletics: 2008 Summer Olympians – Hannah Wilson". mefeedia.com. 2008-07-14. Retrieved 2008-08-11.
  7. ^ "Schools do not make it easy for promising athletes, warns Hannah Wilson".
  8. ^ "2012 Olympic Profile: Hannah Wilson Swims for Hong Kong". 2012-07-11.
  9. ^ "South China Morning Post: HK swimmer wins gold at world student games". South China Morning Post. 2009-07-09. Retrieved 2009-07-09.
  10. ^ "South China Morning Post: Future glows for Wilson after stunner – Record-breaking 20-year-old races to gold at the university games". South China Morning Post. 2009-07-09. Retrieved 2009-07-09.
  11. ^ "South China Morning Post: Wilson wins second gold, breaks record". South China Morning Post. 2009-07-10. Retrieved 2009-07-12.
  12. ^ "South China Morning Post: Wilson grabs second gold in record time". South China Morning Post. 2009-07-11. Retrieved 2009-07-12.