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Rowing at the 1960 Roma Summer Games:

Men's Double Sculls

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Host City: Roma, Italy
Venue(s): Albano Lake, Castel Gandolfo
Date Started: August 31, 1960
Date Finished: September 3, 1960

Gold: TCH Czechoslovakia
Silver: URS Soviet Union
Bronze: SUI Switzerland

Summary

Defending Olympic champions Aleksandr Berkutov and Yury Tyukalov of the Soviet Union were the heavy favorites to retain their title in Rome, as they were on their fourth of five consecutive European Championship crowns and had won the Double Sculls Challenge Cup at the Henley Royal Regatta (then considered the equivalent of a World Championship) in 1957 and 1958. Great Britain had the potential to put up a legitimate challenge, as their entrants, Nicholas Birkmyre and George Justicz, earned the first of their four Double Sculls Challenge Cup victories in 1960. The United States had an interesting entry that included Jack Kelly, Jr., who had appeared in three previous Olympics as a single sculler.

The shock in the opening round came when Václav Kozák and Pavel Schmidt of Czechoslovakia won their heat half a second ahead of Berkutov and Tyukalov and well ahead of the Britons. Kozák and Schmidt were not unknowns, having been runners-up in the most recent European Championships, but their performance was surprising nonetheless. The Soviets managed to advance due to their performance in the repêchage, but Great Britain was eliminated. In the final, Czechoslovakia captured the gold medal with ease, finishing three seconds ahead of the Soviets, who had to struggle to keep the silver one out of the hands of the Swiss duo Ernst Hürlimann and Rolf Larcher, a feat that they accomplished with only a tenth of a second to spare.

Final Standings

Rank Team NOC Medal
1 Czechoslovakia TCH Gold
2 Soviet Union URS Silver
3 Switzerland SUI Bronze
4 France FRA
5 Netherlands NED
6 Belgium BEL
2 h1 r2/3 Norway NOR
2 h2 r2/3 Uruguay URU
2 h3 r2/3 Great Britain GBR
3 h1 r2/3 Denmark DEN
3 h2 r2/3 Yugoslavia YUG
3 h3 r2/3 Germany GER
4 h1 r2/3 Austria AUT
4 h2 r2/3 Italy ITA
4 h3 r2/3 United States USA
5 h2 r2/3 Australia AUS