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| Event type

Single Sculls, Men

Date3 – 10 August 1928
StatusOlympic
LocationRingvaart, Sloten
Participants15 from 15 countries

The reigning Olympic Champion in the single sculls and four-time winner of the Diamond Sculls (then the equivalent of a World Championship in the event), Jack Beresford, Jr., of Great Britain was not present at the 1928 Games, leaving the field in Amsterdam open. There were far more nations and competitors involved than there had been in Paris, but the favorite was probably Canada’s Joe Wright, Jr., who won the Diamond Sculls earlier that year and was the son of the great international rower Joe Wright, Sr.. In the opening round, Wright’s heat saw two of the three fastest times, with Wright edging out Bert Gunther of the Netherlands by half a second. The fastest time, however, went to Australia’s Bobby Pearce, who demolished his German opponent, Walter Flinsch, by 26 seconds with a time of 7.55.8. Pearce was a relative unknown who, due to the Henley Royal Regatta’s rules on amateurism, had been denied an opportunity to compete at that year’s Diamond Sculls.

Pearce was dominant again in the second round but, in a surprising turn of events, Wright was defeated in his heat by Josef Straka, Sr. of Czechoslovakia. Wright qualified for the quarterfinals when his opponent in the repêchage, Michelangelo Bernasconi of Italy (the 1927 European Champion), failed to finish the race. The writing, however, was on the wall, and his hopes of winning a medal were ended when he lost against David Collet of Great Britain in the quarterfinals. Pearce, meanwhile, defeated France’s Victor Saurin in the quarterfinals by 29 seconds despite stopping to let a family of ducks cross his path, which gave the Frenchman a five length lead. Pearce then bested Collet in the semifinals and advanced to face Ken Myers of the United States. The final was no contest: Pearce handily won the gold medal by almost 10 seconds. In the third-place race Collet faced Gunther, who had come back strong in the first repêchage, and captured the bronze medal. The Amsterdam gold medal was the first major victory in Pearce’s successful career: in addition to defending his Olympic crown in 1932, he was eventually allowed to compete in the Diamond Sculls, which he won in 1931, and also captured the title at the inaugural 1930 British Empire Games. In 1933 he turned professional and became World Champion, a distinction that he defended in 1934 and 1938.

PosNrBoatNOCR1R1 RepR2Round Two RepêchageQFSFFinal
1Bobby PearceAUS7:55.8 (1 h2)7:28.0 (1 h3)7:42.8 (1 h4)7:01.8 (1 h1)7:11.0 (1 h1)Gold
2Ken MyersUSA8:14.2 (1 h6)7:46.8 (1 h4)8:05.6 (1 h3)7:14.2 (1 h2)7:20.8 (2 h1)Silver
3David ColletGBR8:29.6 (1 h1)7:56.4 (2 h4)7:35.2 (1 h2)7:52.2 (1 h1)7:08.6 (2 h1)7:19.8 (1 h2)Bronze
4Bert GuntherNED7:58.4 (2 h3)8:11.6 (1 h2)8:23.8 (1 h1)7:57.4 (1 h2)7:18.0 (2 h2)7:31.6 (2 h2)
2 h1 r5/7Joe Wright, Jr.CAN7:57.8 (1 h3)8:45.0 (2 h2)7:49.6 (1 h1)7:57.6 (2 h1)
2 h2 r5/7Josef Straka, Sr.TCH8:05.2 (1 h7)8:36.4 (1 h2)8:04.8 (2 h2)
2 h3 r5/7Édouard CandeveauSUI8:35.8 (2 h1)8:28.6 (1 h3)9:06.6 (1 h6)8:11.0 (2 h3)
2 h4 r5/7Vincent SeurinFRA8:09.2 (1 h4)8:38.2 (1 h5)8:11.8 (2 h4)
2 h2 r4/7Béla SzendeyHUN8:03.2 (1 h5)8:33.8 (2 h1)7:42.4 (2 h2)
AC h1 r4/7Michelangelo BernasconiITA8:02.0 (1 h8)9:10.2 (2 h5)– (AC h1)DNF
2 h3 r3/7Arnold SchwartzDEN8:06.0 (2 h5)8:20.2 (1 h1)7:47.6 (2 h3)
2 h1 r2/7Walter FlinschGER8:21.8 (2 h2)8:23.4 (2 h1)
2 h2 r2/7Jacques MottardBEL8:14.8 (2 h4)8:17.0 (2 h2)
2 h3 r2/7Henri de KokRSA8:19.2 (2 h6)8:50.0 (2 h3)
AC h7 r1/7Kinichiro IshiiJPN– (AC h7)DNF
DNSAchille MengéBEL
DNSJack GuestCAN
DNSWalter Hoover, Sr.USA

Round One (3 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to round two.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1David ColletGBR8:29.6Q
2Édouard CandeveauSUI8:35.8

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bobby PearceAUS7:55.8Q
2Walter FlinschGER8:21.8

Heat Three

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Joe Wright, Jr.CAN7:57.8Q
2Bert GuntherNED7:58.4

Heat Four

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Vincent SeurinFRA8:09.2Q
2Jacques MottardBEL8:14.8

Heat Five

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Béla SzendeyHUN8:03.2Q
2Arnold SchwartzDEN8:06.0

Heat Six

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Ken MyersUSA8:14.2Q
2Henri de KokRSA8:19.2

Heat Seven

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Josef Straka, Sr.TCH8:05.2Q
ACKinichiro IshiiJPNDNF

Heat Eight

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Michelangelo BernasconiITA8:02.0walkover

Round One Repêchage (4 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to round two.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Arnold SchwartzDEN8:20.2Q
2Walter FlinschGER8:23.4

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bert GuntherNED8:11.6Q
2Jacques MottardBEL8:17.0

Heat Three

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Édouard CandeveauSUI8:28.6Q
2Henri de KokRSA8:50.0

Round Two (5 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to quarter-finals.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bert GuntherNED8:23.8Q
2Béla SzendeyHUN8:33.8

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Josef Straka, Sr.TCH8:36.4Q
2Joe Wright, Jr.CAN8:45.0

Heat Three

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bobby PearceAUS7:28.0Q OB
2Arnold SchwartzDEN7:47.6

Heat Four

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Ken MyersUSA7:46.8Q
2David ColletGBR7:56.4

Heat Five

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Vincent SeurinFRA8:38.2Q
2Michelangelo BernasconiITA9:10.2

Heat Six

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Édouard CandeveauSUI9:06.6walkover

Round Two Repêchage (6 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to quarter-finals.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Joe Wright, Jr.CAN7:49.6Q
ACMichelangelo BernasconiITADNF

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1David ColletGBR7:35.2Q
2Béla SzendeyHUN7:42.4

Quarter-Finals (7 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to semi-finals.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1David ColletGBR7:52.2Q
2Joe Wright, Jr.CAN7:57.6

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bert GuntherNED7:57.4Q
2Josef Straka, Sr.TCH8:04.8

Heat Three

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Ken MyersUSA8:05.6Q
2Édouard CandeveauSUI8:11.0

Heat Four

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bobby PearceAUS7:42.8Q
2Vincent SeurinFRA8:11.8

Semi-Finals (8 August 1928)

Winner of each heat advanced to final.

Heat One

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bobby PearceAUS7:01.8Q OB
2David ColletGBR7:08.6

Heat Two

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Ken MyersUSA7:14.2Q
2Bert GuntherNED7:18.0

Final Round (10 August 1928)

A Final (13:00)

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1Bobby PearceAUS7:11.0
2Ken MyersUSA7:20.8

B Final

PosLaneBoatNOCTime
1David ColletGBR7:19.8
2Bert GuntherNED7:31.6