Steve Gladstone really isn’t kidding when he says they start slow and build towards the finish. Around 4:00 in the video it looks like Belgium has a maybe a seat of open water on the entire field but you can see from that point on where the Americans slowly start walking through the field. With 250m to go, the rest is history.
Related: Books on rowing, pt. 2
The end is actually pretty interesting when the two announcers discuss how they challenged the national team coach’s chosen double and beat them for the chance to represent the USA in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. You gotta admit, that’s pretty damn impressive.