|Date||18 – 22 July 1976|
|Location||Centre équestre olympique, Bromont, Québec / Stade d'Hiver de l'Université de Montréal, Montréal, Québec / Stand de tir olympique, L'Acadie, Québec, CAN / Piscine olympique, Montréal, Québec / Stade olympique, Parc olympique, Montréal, Québec|
|Participants||47 from 17 countries|
|Format||Scoring by point tables.|
Pavel Lednev (URS) was a heavy favorite, having won the World Championships in 1973, 1974, and 1975. Lednev took the lead after the second phase when he won the fencing section. Lednev was sixth in shooting to maintain his lead, followed by Czechoslovakia’s Ján Bártů and Poland’s Janusz Pyciak-Peciak. Lednev and Pyciak-Peciak were not strong swimmers. Neither was Bártů, but his 13th place finish in that section pulled him ahead of Lednev and into the lead after four phases, as Pyciak-Peciak dropped to fifth place. But the cross-country run was a strong point for the Pole, and Pyciak-Peciak finished third in the run to move ahead and win the gold medal. Lednev hung on for second place, while Bártů dropped back to the bronze medal. In the swimming American Bob Niemann set a pentathlon world record for the 300 metre freestyle, recording 3:13.61. Pyciak-Peciak’s victory was considered a major upset but he won the World Championship in 1977.
The 1971 World Champion was Boris Onishchenko who also placed third at the Worlds in 1973 and 1974. Considered a contender, something odd was noticed while he was competing in fencing. Even when he did not seem close to a touch, one was registered by the automatic equipment. After his épée was inspected it was found to be rigged so that he could trigger a touch even without making one. Onishchenko was disqualified and banned for life from the sport, which also caused his team to be disqualified. The world media gave him one of the most apt nicknames ever – Boris Dis-onishchenko. The Eastern European press noted that “Onischenko was disqualified for using a weapon not according to the regulations.”