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Rowing at the 1972 München Summer Games:

Men's Single Sculls

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Host City: München, West Germany
Venue(s): Olympic Regatta Course, Oberschleißheim, München
Date Started: August 27, 1972
Date Finished: September 2, 1972

Gold: URS Yury Malyshev
Silver: ARG Alberto Demiddi
Bronze: GDR Wolfgang Güldenpfennig

Summary

The defending Olympic champion in the single sculls, Jan Wienese of the Netherlands, was not present in Munich, but that did not mean that the 1972 edition lacked a favorite. Argentina’s Alberto Demiddi had captured bronze in 1968 and had won the event at the last two European Championships, the 1970 World Championships, the 1967 and 1971 Pan American Games, and the 1971 Diamond Challenge Sculls at the Henley Royal Regatta, making him the best candidate to take the only top prize missing from his collection: an Olympic gold medal.

Demiddi won his opening heat easily, but the fastest time of the round was posted by [Yury Malyshev] of the Soviet Union, an unheralded competitor whose best international finish had been fourth at the 1970 World Championships. The final heat was taken by Yordan Valchev of Bulgaria. Demiddi and Malyshev were the heat winners in the semi-finals, but the Argentine regained his dominance, which seemed to indicate Malyshev’s earlier superiority was a fluke. In the final, however, Malyshev and Demiddi went neck and neck towards the finish, but the Soviet pulled ahead and, in a startling upset, snatched gold away from the Argentine. Demiddi’s silver medal was an improvement on his bronze one from the previous edition, but clearly not the prize that he had hoped for. East Germany’s Wolfgang Güldenpfennig was the only competitor anywhere near the two front runners and rowed to a comfortable third-place finish.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Yury Malyshev 25 Soviet Union URS Gold
2 Alberto Demiddi 28 Argentina ARG Silver
3 Wolfgang Güldenpfennig 20 East Germany GDR Bronze
4 Udo Hild 29 West Germany FRG
5 Jim Dietz 23 United States USA
6 Melchior Bürgin 28 Switzerland SUI
7 Seán Drea 25 Ireland IRL
8 Yordan Valchev 30 Bulgaria BUL
9 Kenneth Dwan 24 Great Britain GBR
10 Murray Watkinson 33 New Zealand NZL
11 Kim Børgesen 26 Denmark DEN
12 Jaroslav Hellebrand 26 Czechoslovakia TCH
4 h1 r2/4 Lennart Bälter 26 Sweden SWE
4 h2 r2/4 Janis Rodmanis 22 Chile CHI
4 h3 r2/4 Hideo Okamoto 24 Japan JPN
5 h1 r2/4 Jim Butterfield 21 Bermuda BER
5 h2 r2/4 José Marques 25 Portugal POR
5 h3 r2/4 Guillermo Spamer 20 Mexico MEX