Host City: Atlanta, United States
Venue(s): Lake Sidney Lanier, Gainesville, Georgia
Date Started: July 30, 1996
Date Finished: August 3, 1996
Germany, East or unified, had won the K-4 500 at 15 of the last 17 editions of the World Championships, but had lost the Olympic title to Hungary in 1992 and were therefore eager to reclaim it at the 1996 Games. They posted the fastest time in the opening round, while China, who brought its 1995 World runner-up squad of Xian Bangdi, Gao Beibei, Dong Ying, and Zhang Qin, took the other heat. Germany continued to dominate in the final, winning gold by a margin of almost two seconds ahead of the Swiss crew who earned their nation’s first, and as of 2012 only, Olympic medal in canoeing. The Swiss women had accomplished this feat by winning a fierce five-way battle that ended with Switzerland, Sweden, China, Canada, and Spain finishing in that order within 0.876 seconds of each other. Swedish bronze medalist Agneta Andersson would go on to become an Olympic champion in the K-2 500, while Germany’s Birgit Fischer and Ramona Portwich would earn silver in that event.
|4 h2r2/3||United States||USA|
|5 h1r2/3||Czech Republic||CZE|