|Women's 400 metre freestyle|
at the Games of the XXVII Olympiad
|Venue||Sydney International Aquatic Centre|
|Date||September 17, 2000 (heats & final)|
|Competitors||39 from 32 nations|
Brooke Bennett emerged as a major force in long-distance swimming, after effortlessly winning a first gold for the United States in the event since Janet Evans did so in 1988. She maintained a powerful lead from start to finish, and posted a lifetime best of 4:05.80, making her the third fastest all-time swimmer in history behind Evans and China's Chen Hua. At only 18 years of age, Diana Munz fought off a sprint challenge from Costa Rica's Claudia Poll and Jamaica's Janelle Atkinson on the final lap to take home the silver in 4:07.07, extending a distance swimming legacy for the Americans with a one–two finish. Meanwhile, Poll settled only for the bronze in 4:07.83.
Atkinson made an Olympic milestone as the first Jamaican to reach a swimming final, but missed out the podium by almost a full second in a national record of 4:08.79. Russia's Nadezhda Chemezova finished fifth in 4:10.37, holding off a fast-pacing Hannah Stockbauer of Germany (4:10.38) by a hundredth of a second (0.01). Netherlands' Carla Geurts (4:12.36), and China's Chen Hua (4:13.11), the second fastest all-time swimmer, rounded out the finale.
Prior to this competition, the existing world and Olympic records were as follows.
|World record||Janet Evans (USA)||4:03.85||Seoul, South Korea||22 September 1988|||
|Olympic record||Janet Evans (USA)||4:03.85||Seoul, South Korea||22 September 1988|||
|4||Brooke Bennett||United States||4:05.80|
|6||Diana Munz||United States||4:07.07|
|5||Claudia Poll||Costa Rica||4:07.83|
- "Swimming schedule". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 14 September 2000. Retrieved 14 May 2013.
- "De Bruijn soars to butterfly gold". BBC Sport. 17 September 2000. Retrieved 15 June 2013.
- "Dolan, Bennett bring home gold for U.S. swimming". Sports Illustrated. CNN. 16 September 2000. Retrieved 15 June 2013.
- "Dolan, Munz overcome ailments to win". ESPN. 17 September 2000. Retrieved 9 June 2013.
- "Americans Bennett, Munz go 1-2 in 400 free". Canoe.ca. 17 September 2000. Retrieved 9 June 2013.
- Whitten, Phillip (17 September 2000). "Olympic Day 2 Finals". Swimming World Magazine. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Atkinson superb; just misses medal in 400m freestyle". Jamaica Gleaner. 18 September 2000. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "Sydney 2000: Swimming – Women's 400m Freestyle Heats" (PDF). Sydney 2000. LA84 Foundation. pp. 192–193. Retrieved 16 June 2013.