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Swimming at the 1976 Montréal Summer Games:

Men's 200 metres Breaststroke

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Host City: Montréal, Canada
Venue(s): Olympic Pool, Montréal, Québec
Date Started: July 24, 1976
Date Finished: July 24, 1976

Gold: GBR David Wilkie
Silver: USA John Hencken
Bronze: USA Rick Colella

Summary

David Wilkie of Great Britain was the slight favorite in this event, but a close contest was expected with his great rival, American John Hencken. Wilkie was World Champion in the 200 breast in 1973 and 1975, but four days earlier, Hencken had won the 100 breaststroke, Wilkie placing second. So far in Montréal, American men had won every gold medal when the final of this event started, and there the streak would end. Hencken swam wonderfully, almost a full second ahead of his world record, finishing in 2:17.26. He led through 100 metres, but Wilkie went ahead by the third lap, and shattered the world record with 2:15.11, over two seconds ahead of his rival. The mark would last as the world record for over six years. The Olympic gold medal was the first by a British male since 1908.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 David Wilkie 22 Great Britain GBR Gold WR
2 John Hencken 22 United States USA Silver
3 Rick Colella 24 United States USA Bronze
4 Graham Smith 18 Canada CAN
5 Charles Keating 20 United States USA
6 Arvydas Juozaitis 20 Soviet Union URS
7 Nikolay Pankin 27 Soviet Union URS
8 Walter Kusch 22 West Germany FRG
3 h1 r1/2 Anders Norling 20 Sweden SWE
3 h2 r1/2 Giorgio Lalle 19 Italy ITA
3 h3 r1/2 Nobutaka Taguchi 25 Japan JPN
3 h4 r1/2 Aigars Kudis 16 Soviet Union URS
4 h1 r1/2 Peter Lang 18 West Germany FRG
4 h2 r1/2 David Leigh 19 Great Britain GBR
4 h3 r1/2 Dave Heinbuch 21 Canada CAN
4 h4 r1/2 Ove Wisløff 22 Norway NOR
5 h1 r1/2 Tuomo Kerola 18 Finland FIN
5 h2 r1/2 Tateki Shinya 18 Japan JPN
5 h3 r1/2 Steffen Kriechbaum 29 Austria AUT
5 h4 r1/2 Orlando Catinchi 19 Puerto Rico PUR
6 h1 r1/2 Julio Abreu 22 Paraguay PAR
6 h2 r1/2 Gustavo Lozano 24 Mexico MEX
6 h3 r1/2 Paul Jarvie 23 Australia AUS
6 h4 r1/2 Cezary Śmiglak 23 Poland POL
7 h3 r1/2 Henrique Vicêncio 17 Portugal POR
7 h4 r1/2 Zdravko Divjak 20 Yugoslavia YUG
AC h1 r1/2 Sérgio Ribeiro 17 Brazil BRA DQ
AC h2 r1/2 Carlos Nazario 18 Puerto Rico PUR DQ
AC h4 r1/2 Paul Naisby 21 Great Britain GBR DQ