Host City: Moskva, Soviet Union
Venue(s): Canoeing and Rowing Basin, Krylatskoye Sports Complex, Moskva
Date Started: July 20, 1980
Date Finished: July 27, 1980
Norway’s participation in the American-led boycott meant that whoever won the men’s double sculls event at the 1980 Summer Olympics would earn a qualified victory at best. This was due to the fact that brothers Frank and Alf Hansen, the defending Olympic champions and winners of three of the last four World Championships, were excluded from competing. This meant that the only World Champion at the Games was Chris Baillieu of Great Britain, one half of the 1977 championship duo and runner-up at the 1976 Olympics. Baillieu was considered a slight favorite, however, even without his traditional partner Mike Hart, because he had won three of the last four Double Challenge Sculls at the Henley Royal Regatta. In Moscow he was partnered with Jim Clark, a 1976 silver medalist in the coxed eights.
The opening round, however, was dominated by East Germany, who finished nearly five seconds ahead of the other heat winner, Great Britain. The German pair consisted of Joachim Dreifke, bronze medalist from the 1976 Olympic single sculls and half of the 1975 World runners-up, and Klaus Kröppelien, a successful international rower in other disciplines. In the final, the East Germans claimed gold by a comfortable margin, leaving silver and bronze for Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia respectively. The former’s crew consisted of Zoran Pančić and Milorad Stanulov, a bronze medalist in the single sculls at the 1978 World Championships, while the latter was represented by Zdeněk Pecka and Václav Vochoska, both 1976 Olympic bronze medalists in the quadruple sculls. Great Britain, meanwhile, faltered in the final and finished fourth.