Host City: Moskva, Soviet Union
Venue(s): Canoeing and Rowing Basin, Krylatskoye Sports Complex, Moskva
Date Started: July 30, 1980
Date Finished: August 1, 1980
Reigning Olympic champions in the K-2 500 Nina Gopova-Trofimova and Galina Alekseyeva were in attendance at the 1980 Summer Olympics in a bid to defend their crown and were also representing the reigning World Champions. They were certain to encounter a challenge from East Germany, winners of the 1977 and 1978 World Championships, who sent Carsta Genäuß and Martina Bischof to the Games. Romania, meanwhile, had medaled at each of the last three World Championships (silver in 1977, bronze in 1978 and 1979) with Agafia Buhaev and Nastasia Nichitov, but the latter was not present in Moscow and thus Buhaev was partnered with Elisabeta Băbeanu instead.
The Soviet Union bested Romania in the opening round, but it was East Germany who posted the fastest time. In the final Genäuß and Bischof were far and away the best crew on the water and the won gold by a margin of over three seconds ahead of the Soviets, who lost their title and were forced to settle for silver. Hungary’s Éva Rakusz and Mária Zakariás, meanwhile, snuck ahead of the Romanians and captured silver by a margin of only 0.09 seconds.