Host City: Moskva, Soviet Union
Venue(s): Swimming Pool, Olympiysky Sports Complex, Moskva
Date Started: July 21, 1980
Date Finished: July 21, 1980
[Mary T. Meagher] was the worldâs greatest butterfly swimmer, bar none. She had set three world records in 1979, lowering the mark from [Tracy Caulkins]âs 2:09.87, set in 1978, to 2:07.01. The two weeks before the Moscow Olympics, Meagher took the mark down further, to 2:06.37, at a meet in Irvine, California. In August 1981 at the US Nationals, that mark fell to her as she finished in 2:05.96, a world record that would last until 1999. Despite the East German womenâs hegemony in Moscow, Meagher would have won.
Without her the gold medal went to the GDRâs [Ines GeiÃler], who would later win the event at the 1981 Europeans and 1982 World Championships. Her Moscow gold came by only 1/100th of a second over teammate [Sybille SchÃ¶nrock], who was never heard from again.