Australia has finished its first World Rowing Cup event of 2017 with a total of five medals including two golds from the Women’s and Men’s Fours.
With eight young new crews competing in A-Finals at the event in Poznan, Poland, Australia also won silver in the Women’s Quadruple Scull and bronze medals in the Women’s Pair and Women’s Double Scull.
Totalling five medals, Australia finished the event in third place on Regatta Medal Table and the team will now return to the AIS European Training Centre ahead of World Rowing Cup 3 in Lucerne, Switzerland next month.
Competing at the event from the NSW Institute of Sport were:
- Jack Hargreaves
- Spencer Turrin
- Josh Hicks
Women’s Quadruple Skull
- Rowena Meredith
- Leah Saunders
- Genevieve Horton
Lightweight Women’s Double Skull
- Georgia Miansarow
- Angus Moore
- Tim Masters
- Campbell Watts
- Alex Purnell
- Hamish Playfair
Men’s Quadruple Skull
- Sean Murphy
Australia’s Men’s Four won their heat two and their closest competition in the A-Final was inevitably going to come from Olympic Champions Great Britain who won the other heat. Australia’s crew of Alex Hill, Jack Hargreaves (NSWIS/NTC), Spencer Turrin (NSWIS/NTC) and Josh Hicks (NSWIS/NTC) were by far the fastest out the start and, at 44 strokes per minute, took the lead early on.
Australia began to stride away at 39 strokes per minute as the British momentum began to build, but it was Australia who got to the halfway point first, with Great Britain over three seconds behind them and the rest of the field well behind. With 500 metres to go, Great Britain had narrowed the gap over Australia, but distance was too great to make up in the gap and the victory was Australia’s.
All images copyright Rowing Australia.
The Women’s Quadruple Scull from Australia is a young crew with the three athletes making Senior team debuts. Caitlin Cronin, Rowena Meredith (NSWIS/NTC) and Leah Saunders (NSWIS/NTC) have joined forces with Olympian Genevieve Horton (NSWIS/NTC) in this boat class and were on for a tough race with crews from Poland, China and Germany.
The Poles shot out at the start the fastest, getting themselves an open water advantage with Germany (the Olympic Champions) in second and Australia in third. However, the Australians paced their race well and moved through the Germans, as the Poles increased their lead. As the boats approached the line, it was Poland in first, while Australia fended off a challenge from China to take silver, while the Chinese took bronze.
Post-race, two-seat Rowena Meredith was philosophical on the meet.
“That was the first regatta as a crew, so it is good to see where we stand moving forward. We are now looking to see how we can improve on this performance for Lucerne.
“We’ll go back to basics and see where we stand again.”
The Lightweight Women’s Double Scull of Alice Arch and Georgia Miansarow (NSWIS/NTC) had made the A-Final by virtue of finishing fourth in their repechage. This was Arch’s first Senior team showing, and partnering Miansarow, this young crew put in a valiant effort against sterling competition from two crews from China as well as hometown favourites, Poland. The crew had a tough race, finishing sixth overall.
The Men’s Eight of Darcy Wruck, Nathan Bowden, Ben Coombs, Angus Widdicombe, Angus Moore (NSWIS/NTC), Tim Masters, Campbell Watts (NSWIS/NTC), Alex Purnell (NSWIS/NTC) and coxswain James Rook finished their first A-Final of 2017 in fourth place in a race that saw an inform Germany not only win gold, but also set a new World’s Best Time.
The Australian crew, with a number of athletes appearing at their first World Rowing Cup, started well in what was a tight field with Germany, New Zealand, Great Britain and Poland. The Australians however couldn’t keep up with the pace set by the Germans, and battled it out with New Zealand and Great Britain for the remaining medals, but as the crews reached the final 500 metres it was too late to push for a podium finish.
Meanwhile in the B-Finals, it was a good morning for the Men’s Pair of Simon Keenan and Hamish Playfair (NSWIS/NTC). The race was hotly contested between the Australians, and crews from Argentina, Germany and New Zealand. The Australians came out quickly, but the race was a true battle between the crews, with each nabbing the lead at some point in the race. However, it was Keenan and Playfair who had the edge at the line and took home the win, and placing seventh overall at World Rowing Cup 2.
The Men’s Quadruple Scull B-Final saw Hamish Parry, Cameron Fowler, James Kerr and Sean Murphy (NSWIS) finished fourth overall in their B-Final. The crew, who normally compete in the Lightweight category, pushed between third and fourth throughout the race, but China surged ahead of the Australians at the line to take third, while New Zealand and Great Britain finished first and second respectively.