The Women’s Sweep squad of 8 rowing in the coxless pair, four and eight and coached by SUBC Coach Phil Bourguignon had a strong start at the Championships winning their heats of the four and the pair and progressing to finals. The four stroked by SUWRC rower Renee Kerby recorded the fasted heat time in their event. The regatta organizers compressed the days racing due to the heatwave currently engulfing Europe and this left virtually no time for proper recovery before the Woemn’s eight ( with 6 doubling up from the four and the pair) had to scramble on the water for their event – finishing third and going through to the repechage. The task for Phil will be to manage the racing in such hot weather with six of his crew (and no reserves) contesting two events. His stratgey now with wins in the four and pair will no doubt be to try and guide the eight into the final with the minimum of effort on the part of the crew.
Former SUBC Coach, Andrew Randell’s Men’s Coxed four started a bit more slowly with third place in their heat. The crew wich includes fergus Pragnell ( 2004 World Champion in this event) and Chris Clyne from SUBC was 3.5 seconds behind heat winers New Zealand and 1.5 seconds back from Great Britain. The other heat was won easily by the Romania whose crew comprises four from their Sen A Eight which medalled at the earlier World Cups. They led by 5 seconds at the 1500 and took the heat from USA as they eased down.
In the Men’s 4+ repechages last night it was the Aussies who showed their boat speed for the first time reeling off an opening 500m in 1.28 to set up a 3 second lead. They maintained the lead to the 1000m and held of a challenge from USA to take out the repechage in 6.17.
The women’s eight only needed to finish in the top four in their repechage to qualify for the final. After 500m in 1.34 the Aussies were second just behind Belarus but with Ukraine quickly dropping off the pace the Aussies were able to cut their rate and effort to row into the final comfortably in fourth place.
In other events the Australian men’s coxless four clinched a place in the final with a strong second in their repechage after an opening fourth place in their heat. The Men’s Double Scull, facing one of the largest fields made it to semi finals with a second in their repechage.
U23 World Championships concluded this Sunday 23rd July. Fully detailed race results are available on the FISA website.