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Canoeing at the 1980 Moskva Summer Games:

Men's Kayak Singles, 1,000 metres

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Host City: Moskva, Soviet Union
Venue(s): Canoeing and Rowing Basin, Krylatskoye Sports Complex, Moskva
Date Started: July 31, 1980
Date Finished: August 2, 1980

Gold: GDR Rüdiger Helm
Silver: FRA Alain Lebas
Bronze: ROU Ion Bîrlădeanu

Summary

Rüdiger Helm of East Germany was the reigning Olympic and two-time World Champion in the K-1 1000 and had three Olympic and ten World canoeing medals by the time he entered the 1980 Summer Games. In Moscow he was unstoppable, winning his opening and semi-final heats, as well as the final, with little trouble to successfully defend his title. The battle for the remaining podium spots, however, was much closer and came down to three competitors in the medal round: Alain Lebas of France, Australian John Sumegi, and 1979 World runner-up Ion Bîrlădeanu of Romania. These three crossed the finish line with only 0.43 seconds between them, and a photo finish determined that Lebas had gotten the silver medal while Bîrlădeanu had earned bronze. Sumegi did not go home empty-handed, however, as he won a silver medal in the K-1 500. Helm, meanwhile, also took gold in the K-4 1000 and bronze in the K-2 500.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Rüdiger Helm 23 East Germany GDR Gold
2 Alain Lebas 26 France FRA Silver
3 Ion Bîrlădeanu 21 Romania ROU Bronze
4 John Sumegi 25 Australia AUS
5 Oreste Perri 28 Italy ITA
6 Felix Masár 24 Czechoslovakia TCH
7 Milan Janić 23 Yugoslavia YUG
8 Ian Ferguson 28 New Zealand NZL
9 Anders Andersson 27 Sweden SWE
4 h1r3/4 Guillermo del Riego 21 Spain ESP
4 h2r3/4 Ramutis Višinskis 22 Soviet Union URS
4 h3r3/4 Helmut Lehmann 21 Switzerland SUI
5 h1r3/4 Waldemar Merk 21 Poland POL
5 h2r3/4 István Joós 27 Hungary HUN
5 h3r3/4 Jan Baaijens 23 Netherlands NED
4 h1r2/4 Theo Claessens 31 Belgium BEL
4 h2r2/4 Jorge Colome 22 Cuba CUB
5 h1r2/4 Hannu Kojo 26 Finland FIN
5 h2r2/4 Ian Pringle 27 Ireland IRL
6 h1r2/4 Doug Parnham 28 Great Britain GBR