At the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal Frank Baumgartl won the Olympic bronze medal in a new personal best time of 8:10.36 minutes. Approaching the last obstacle, he was just behind Anders Gärderud of Sweden, who was in the lead. Baumgartl seemed even about to pass Gärderud. However, as Baumgartl was about to challenge Gärderud for the gold medal, he misjudged the steeple barrier and fell. Baumgartl was then passed by Bronisław Malinowski, a veteran steeplechaser, who took the silver (Malinowski also won the gold in Moscow 1980 Olympic steeplechase) medal. Baumgartl recovered, and took the bronze medal. Baumgartl's time remained his career best, and places him third on the German all-time performers list behind Damian Kallabis and Hagen Melzer.