Eight, 1971-72

Eight, 1971-72
The success of the New Zealand rowing eight at the Munich Olympics in 1972, the same eight that had won the European championship the year before, was one of those wins that seem to transcend sport.

Their win, their manner in achieving it and their laid-bare emotion on the victory dais when God Defend New Zealand was played at their Olympic victory ceremony was a seminal moment in New Zealand sport, one of those moments which for years later people can recall as if it was yesterday.

They followed what had been the usual New Zealand tactic of sprinting early and gaining the lead, then holding their position, and spurting again when the threats came. The threats did come, most notably from East Germany, but the New Zealanders were never headed.

The crew was:
  • Tony Hurt
  • Wybo Veldman
  • Dick Joyce
  • John Hunter
  • Lindsay Wilson
  • Athol Earle
  • Trevor Coker
  • Gary Robertson
  • Simon Dickie (cox)
IOC president Avery Brundage wasn’t scheduled to present the gold medals to the New Zealanders, but he insisted he did so.
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