The World Champions Great Britain got away quickly in an attempt to hold off the field. The British finished third in London and really, really want gold. But the Olympic Champions, Germany was in the lane next to them and were trying to hold on to this fast start. The young New Zealand crew followed in third. Late qualifiers to this Olympics, the United States moved with New Zealand.

Great Britain still had the lead at the half way point with Germany remaining the closest challenger. The Netherlands had now moved ahead of the United States and were matching the New Zealanders. The Netherlands have regularly won Olympic medals in this boat class but did not manage to in London. Meanwhile at the head of the field Great Britain was having an awesome race and continued to lead. What could Germany do? The Germans now had the pressure of the Netherlands. The crowd was on their feet. It was stroke for stroke. Great Britain had done it. Their first gold medal since the Sydney Olympics in this boat class.

Germany managed to hold off the final sprint of the Netherlands. The final medallists in rowing at the Rio Olympic Games had been decided.

Results: GBR, GER, NED, USA, POL, NZL

Will SATCH (GBR) - gold 

"From the first stroke just go and don’t look back. Coming into the finish it was like really surreal. I couldn’t believe it and still can’t believe it." 

Eric JOHANNESEN (GER) – silver

“We did everything for the second place. It’s my second medal for the Olympic Games. We have to be happy it’s a medal for the Olympics.”

Robert LUECKEN (NED) – bronze

“We were in the second position and we got bronze. It was very difficult water and we had a missed stroke somewhere we were on starboard.”

Peter WIERSUM (NED) – bronze

“I’m disappointed about the silver but I’m sure by tonight I’ll feel better.”