BAGSVAERD, DENMARK, AUG. 30 -- U.S. crews won two gold medals in closely contested races with the East and West Germans in the World Rowing Championships at Lake Bagsvaerd today.

The U.S. coxless four women's lightweight crew of Sandy Kendall, Lindsay Burns, Angie Herron and Mandy Kowal successfully defended its title by beating West Germany, the 1985 gold medalist, and four other countries, including Canada.

The Americans caught up with the West German boat at the 1,000-meter mark, and it was neck and neck the rest of the distance.

In the classic coxed eight, the last race in the seven-day championships, the U.S. crew started in second behind East Germany, drew even, then took the lead after 1,000 meters and stretched its lead to two boat lengths at the finish.

The U.S. crew of Mike Teti, Jon Smith, Ted Patton, Mike Still, Pete Nordell, Jeff McLaughlin, Doug Burden, John Pesscatore and Seth Bauer also beat Australia.

Canadians Janice Mason and Heather Hattin won the double scull women lightweight gold medal in a three-boat race with the American defending champions, C.B. Sands and Chris Ernst, and Belgium.

Italy won its third straight gold in the lightweight men's eight, finishing ahead of West Germany and the United States in a three-boat race.