Bob Pearce was a dominant Australian rower in the 1920s and 1930s, winning gold in the men’s single sculls at the 1928 and 1932 Olympics. During the 1928 quarterfinals, Pearce stopped rowing briefly to let a family of ducks pass, allowing his opponent to take the lead, but Pearce caught up and won by nearly 30 seconds. Pearce’s Olympic record of 7 minutes 11 seconds stood until 1972. Pearce came from a family of successful rowers and later tried professional wrestling in Canada.
Australian athlete BobPearce dominated competitive rowing in the 1920s and 1930s, including victories in the men’s single sculls at the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam and the 1932 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. He is also known for something that happened during the quarterfinal race at the 1928 Games. Pearce had built up a sizable lead in the 2,000m race against French competitor Vincent Saurin, but then a family of ducks swam single file into the his lane. Pearce stopped rowing briefly to let the ducks pass and Saurin darted past. In the final 1,000 meters though, Pearce caught up and won by nearly 30 seconds.
Dodge the ducks, all in a row:
In the 1928 single sculls final, Pearce won gold with a time of 7 minutes 11 seconds, an Olympic record that was not broken until 1972.
Born Henry Robert Pearce in 1905, the Olympian came from a family of successful rowers. Both his father and grandfather were Australian sculling champions.
After six years of rowing professionally, Pearce moved to Canada and tried his hand at professional wrestling.