Host City: München, West Germany
Date Started: August 27, 1972
Date Finished: September 2, 1972
Participants: 440 (439 men and 0 women) from 35 countries
Youngest Participant: Werner Grieshofer (12 years, 188 days)
Oldest Participant: Mariano Gottifredi (41 years, 364 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): Vladimír Petříček (2 medals)
Most Medals (Country): East Germany (7 medals)
Rowing at the 1972 Summer Olympics was held in the Munich district of Oberschleißheim, where an artificial course was installed for the Games. The 1972 program remained that same as it had been since 1924 and was the last one held before events for women and the men’s quadruple sculls were included. East Germany dominated the medal table, winning one in every event, three of which were gold. This was the first time a nation had accomplished such a feat since unified Germany had done it in 1936. No other nation won more than two medals and only East Germany and the Soviet Union took home more than one title, thanks to victories in both sculling events for the latter.
Bermuda sent its first, and as of 2012 only, rower to the Olympics in the person of Jim Butterfield in the single sculls. North Korea also took part in rowing at the Games (and the Summer Olympics) for the first time, by entering a crew into the coxless fours event. Ireland, meanwhile, sent Seán Drea to compete in the single sculls, their first rowing entry since 1948. All this meant that a record 35 nations took part in Olympic rowing in 1972, up from the previous high of 33. Meanwhile, by taking bronze in the coxed pairs, Romania won its first Olympic rowing medal since its inaugural appearance in 1952. Czechoslovakia’s Vladimír Petříček won two medals in Munich, silver and bronze in the coxed pairs and fours respectively, becoming the first multiple medalist in one edition since several members of the Swiss delegation did so in 1936.