Fanny ‘Bobbie’ Rosenfeld: Google doodle celebrates the 118th birthday of Canadian sports star

Fanny ‘Bobbie’ Rosenfeld: Google doodle celebrates the 118th birthday of Canadian sports star

Today’s Doodle celebrates the 118th birthday of Canadian sports star Fanny Rosenfeld, famously nick-named Bobbie Rosenfeld for her bobbed hair. Rosenfeld ran in the first Olympics in which women were allowed to compete in track and field, dedicating her heart and soul to supporting female athletes.

On this day in 1904, Rosenfeld was born in Ekaterinoslav, Russia—now Dnipro, Ukraine—and her family moved to Barrie, Canada, where she was born. She was very good at basketball, softball, lacrosse, hockey, and tennis as a young girl.

Rosenfeld’s track career was sparked by a sporting carnival in which her softball team encouraged her to compete in the 100-yard dash and she won over the best Canadian sprinter. She began making headlines at competitions like the Canadian National Exhibition’s Athletic Day and Ontario’s first women’s track and field championship following that run. She then underwent intense training.

Rosenfeld competed in the Olympic games in Amsterdam in 1928, which were the first Olympics in which women could compete in track and field. She sprinted. In the 100-meter race, she came in second, narrowly missing out on first place, and her relay team won gold in the 4×100-meter relay.

Rosenfeld had to quit competing shortly after the Olympics due to a severe case of arthritis. She worked as an athletics reporter for the Globe and Mail for twenty years and continued to be involved in sports as a coach, executive, or manager for various women’s sports teams. Her column, “Sports Reel,” debunked the myth that sports made women unfeminine and covered sports news.

Rosenfeld was one of the first athletes to be inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. She also received the inaugural award for Canadian woman athlete of the century. The Canadian Press has presented a female athlete of the year with the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award each year since 1978. Generations of young female athletes continue to be inspired by Bobbie Rosenfeld because they see her legacy as a reminder that they, too, can achieve the impossible and overcome obstacles on their way to greatness.

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