Host City: Los Angeles, United States
Venue(s): Lake Casitas, Los Padres National Forest, California
Date Started: August 6, 1984
Date Finished: August 10, 1984
Unlike the 1980 American-led boycott, which had had a limited impact on the canoeing events, the Soviet boycott of the 1984 Summer Olympics severely depleted the field in the sport. This was noticeable in the women’s K-1 500, as nations that had been podium finishers at the last edition and won six of the last nine World Championship medals were absent. The most notable absentee, and a practical shoo-in for gold in this event, was Birgit Fischer, who had helped East Germany win all nine gold medals in women’s disciplines at the last three Worlds. The only recent World Championship medalist in the event who was present was Sweden’s Agneta Andersson, runner-up in 1982 and bronze medalist in 1981. Maria Ştefan of Romania had finished third at the most recent World Championships, but was only competing in the K-4 500 at Los Angeles, and thus her nation was represented by Tecla Marinescu-Borcănea.
In the opening round, Marinescu-Borcănea came third in her heat, behind Andersson and Australia’s Elizabeth Blencowe, while the fastest time went to Barbara Schüttpelz of West Germany. In the final, Andersson took the gold medal with ease, while Schüttpelz, Marinescu-Borcănea, and the Netherlands’ Annemiek Derckx battled to the line for the remaining podium spots. Schüttpelz crossed first to win silver, but only 0.19 seconds separated her from fourth-placed Marinescu-Borcănea, who lost bronze to Derckx by the slimmest possible margin: 0.01 seconds. Andersson would go on to become a double Olympic champion later that day, when she won the K-2 500, and she captured silver in the K-4 500 the following day. Schüttpelz, meanwhile, would nab bronze in the K-2 500.
|2||Barbara Lewe-Pohlmann-Schüttpelz||27||West Germany||FRG||Silver|
|6||Sheila Conover||21||United States||USA|
|9||Lesley Smither||26||Great Britain||GBR|
|4 h1r2/3||Ingeborg Rasmussen||24||Norway||NOR|
|5 h1r2/3||Ho Kim Fai||21||Hong Kong||HKG|