|Women's 100 metres|
at the Games of the XVI Olympiad
|Venue||Melbourne Cricket Ground|
|Date||November 24th (heats & semifinals)|
November 26th (final)
|Competitors||37 from 18 nations|
| Athletics at the|
1956 Summer Olympics
|80 m hurdles||women|
|110 m hurdles||men|
|400 m hurdles||men|
|4×100 m relay||men||women|
|4×400 m relay||men|
|20 km walk||men|
|50 km walk||men|
The women's 100 metres competition at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia was held at the Olympic Stadium on November 29–30.
In the final, Betty Cuthbert clearly beat her teammate Marlene Mathews-Willard out of the blocks, with Heather Armitage and Isabelle Daniels out quickly in close contention. Christa Stubnick had a burst of acceleration to quickly draw even with Daniels as Armitage was unable to hold her speed. Cuthbert expanded upon her slight advantage to pull away to a clear win. Stubnick was able to separate slightly from Daniels with Mathews-Willard steadily gaining from the back. Mathews-Willard caught Daniels and almost nipped Stubnick, clearly the fastest moving athlete at the finish.
The women's 100m competition started with six heats, where the fastest two from each heat qualified to one of the two semifinals groups. The three fastest runners from each semifinals group advanced to the final.
Prior to the competition, the existing World and Olympic records were as follows.
|World record||Shirley Strickland (AUS)||11.3||Warsaw, Poland||August 4, 1955|
|Olympic record||Helen Stephens (USA)||11.5||Berlin, Germany||August 4, 1936|
|2||Vira Kalashnykova-Krepkina||Soviet Union||11.9||Q|
|3||Mae Faggs||United States||12.2|
|1||Marlene Mathews-Willard||Australia||11.5||Q, OR|
|2||Galina Rezchikova||Soviet Union||11.8||Q|
|3||Lucinda Williams||United States||12.0|
|1||Betty Cuthbert||Australia||11.4||Q, OR|
|2||Isabelle Daniels||United States||11.6||Q|
|3||Anne Pashley||Great Britain||11.7|
|1||Heather Armitage||Great Britain||11.5||Q|
|2||Gisela Birkemeyer||United Team of Germany||11.7||Q|
|1||Galina Popova||Soviet Union||11.6||Q|
|3||Inge Fuhrmann||United Team of Germany||12.2|
|1||Christa Stubnick||United Team of Germany||11.7||Q|
|2||June Foulds||Great Britain||11.9||Q|
|3||Margaret Stuart||New Zealand||12.3|
|4||Elaine Winter||South Africa||12.5|
|1||Christa Stubnick||United Team of Germany||11.9||Q|
|5||Galina Popova||Soviet Union||12.2|
|2||Heather Armitage||Great Britain||11.6||Q|
|3||Isabelle Daniels||United States||11.7||Q|
|4||Gisela Birkemeyer||United Team of Germany||11.9|
|5||Vira Kalashnykova-Krepkina||Soviet Union||11.9|
|6||Galina Reshchikova||Soviet Union||12.1|
|Christa Stubnick||United Team of Germany||11.7|
|4||Isabelle Daniels||United States||11.8|
|6||Heather Armitage||Great Britain||12.0|
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Faith Yvonne Leech was an Australian freestyle swimmer who won a gold medal in the 4×100–metre freestyle relay and bronze in the 100-metre freestyle at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne.
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