|Date||27 – 31 August 1972|
|Location||Reitstadion, Riem, München / Fechthalle 2, Messegelände (Halle 20), München / Schießanlage, Hochbrück, München / Schwimmhalle, Olympiapark, München / Olympiastadion, Olympiapark, München|
|Participants||59 from 20 countries|
|Format||Scoring by point tables.|
András Balczó (HUN) was the best pentathlete of the 1960s, winning five consecutive World Championships – 1963, 1965-67, and 1969. But he had yet to win an individual Olympic gold medal, placing second in 1968 after being favored. He was not favored in 1972, that distinction going to the Soviet World Champion (1971) Boris Onishchenko. After four phases, Balczó was tied for third with the defending gold medalist Björn Ferm (SWE), both trailing Onishchenko and his teammate, Pavel Lednev. But Balczó was a far superior runner and finished third in the cross-country run, pulling him ahead of both Soviets to an easy overall victory. Onishchenko won the silver and Lednev the bronze medal. This was Balczó’s third gold medal, adding it to team golds in 1960 and 1968, still the most ever by an Olympic modern pentathlete – thru 2008. The gold, and the team silver in 1972, gave him five Olympic medals, an Olympic record at the time. Balczó later married 1972 Olympic gymnast Mónika Császár. They would have 11 children and he would become an extreme right-wing politician.
During the competition it was discovered that 14 athletes had taken sedatives (Valium and Librium) before the shooting phase. The drugs were not banned by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), although they were by the Union Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM). But at the Olympics, the IOC rules were followed, so the athletes were not disqualified.
|55||Juan José Castilla||MEX||4,014|