Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): Eton Dorney, Windsor
Date Started: August 7, 2012
Date Finished: August 9, 2012
The men’s C2-1000 at the 2012 Summer Olympics was not an easy event to call. Certainly Belarus’ Bogdanovich brothers, Andrey and Aleksandr, who were the defending Olympic champions, would be a factor, but their strength had faded somewhat since 2008, paving the way for others to take the crown. The most recent World Champion was Germany, whose crew consisted of Stefan Holtz and Tomasz Wylenzek, who had won Olympic gold in 2004 and silver in 2008 in the event alongside Christian Gille. Wylenzek and Holtz, however, were outperformed by rookies Peter Kretschmer and Kurt Kuschela at the German trials, who were relatively untested on the international scene, certainly when compared to Wyzlenzek. The most recent European Champions were [Alexey Korovashkov] and Ilya Pervukhin of Russia, who would certainly be a force in the event as well.
There were few surprises in the heats, with Germany and Russia posting the two fastest times, although the canoe from Azerbaijan showed promise by winning its heat with the third-fastest time overall. The team, paddled by Serhiy Bezuhliy and Maksym Prokopenko, certainly had potential in the tournament. Both were former competitors for Ukraine who had taken the title in the event at the 2010 European Championships for Azerbaijan and were runners up at the 2011 World Championships. They, alongside Germany, advanced directly to the finals, while Russia and Belarus posted the fastest times in the semifinals. Bezuhliy and Prokopenko took an early lead during the final, but were kept from making a true breakaway by Kretschmer and Kuschela. In the final quarter of the race, the team from Azerbaijan grew noticeably tired and were passed by the Germans, who sprinted ahead of the rest of the pack to claim gold. Azerbaijan continued to weaken and was eventually passed by Belarus and Russia as well, who claimed silver and bronze respectively in the tournament.