Host City: Barcelona, Spain
Venue(s): Lake Banyoles, Bañolas
Date Started: July 27, 1992
Date Finished: August 1, 1992
With two different partners and for two nations, East and unified Germany, Beate Schramm had won the women’s double sculls event at the last three World Championships, but chose to compete in the single sculls at the 1992 Summer Olympics instead. This left her two-time World Championship cohort, Kathrin Boron, in need of a new partner, which she found in Kerstin Köppen. Together they were the favorites in the event at the 1992 Games, but they could certainly expect a challenge from Romania’s Elisabeta Lipă and Veronica Cochelea, both of whom were multiple Olympic and World Championship medalists across several disciplines.
The Romanians and the Germans won their heats in the opening round, and posted the two fastest times doing so, while the Chinese duo of Gu Xiaoli and Lu Huali won the easier third heat with a much slower time. The semi-finals pitted Germany and Romania against each other directly, with the former defeating the latter handily by a margin of over two and a half seconds. The Chinese pair, meanwhile, continued to attract attention by winning their heat in Olympic record time. They suffered for this in the final, as they were clearly drained from their earlier effort, and they finished far behind the two main contenders, although still well enough to earn bronze. Romania and Germany, meanwhile, went head to head for a while, but the latter was clearly superior and posted an Olympic record time in its gold medal victory, leaving Lipă and Cochelea to settle for silver. At these Games Lipă gained her fourth and fifth Olympic medals, with gold and silver in the single and double sculls respectively. Cochelea, meanwhile, won another silver medal in the quadruple sculls in Barcelona.