Host City: Sydney, Australia
Venue(s): Sydney International Regatta Centre, Penrith, New South Wales
Date Started: September 17, 2000
Date Finished: September 23, 2000
Canada, the defending champion, did not return to the women’s double sculls at the 2000 Summer Olympics, which meant that [Jana Thieme] and [Kathrin Boron] of Germany, the reigning World Champions, were considered the favorites in the event. Boron in particular had a distinguished rowing career that included Olympic titles in the double and quadruple sculls in 1992 and 1996 respectively, as well as additional victories in the double sculls at the World Championships in 1990, 1991, and 1997. Another notable entry was Romania’s [Veronica Cochelea] and [Elisabeta Lipă], the latter of whom had won six Olympic rowing medals, including gold in the double sculls in 1984.
In winning their heats, Germany and Romania posted the two fastest times in the opening round and were well ahead of the rest of the pack. In the final, however, Romania struggled and finished in fifth, nearly ten seconds behind the gold medal-winning Germans. In fact, only one nation, the Netherlands, represented by [Pieta van Dishoeck] and [Eeke van Nes], came within five seconds of the Germans and thus captured silver. In addition to both Dutchmen having been the 1998 World runners-up and the 1999 bronze medalists, van Nes also had come in third in the double sculls at the 1996 Summer Olympics. Meanwhile, by taking bronze, [Birutė Šakickienė] and [Kristina Poplavskaja] earned Lithuania’s first, and as of 2012 only, Olympic rowing medal as an independent nation.