Great Britain wins one gold, four silvers and one bronze at World Cup 1 in Belgrade, with five medals coming on the final day of competition
The men’s quadruple sculls won a fantastic gold medal as Great Britain crews claimed five medals on the final day of World Cup 1 in Belgrade, to go with Andy Houghton’s silver from Saturday.
Tom Barras, Jonny Walton, Graeme Thomas and John Collins battled with the German crew all the way down the track, sitting second through the 1,500m mark. In the final 500m, the Brits edged ahead and stayed in front to the line, winning by a matter of inches.
The quad won silver at the World Championships in Sarasota-Bradenton last year, along with a full set of World Cup medals in the 2017 season and were proud of the way they raced in Belgrade.
Walton said: “We set out to win gold and did exactly that. It was a tough race but we got our noses ahead and that was the most important thing.”
Thomas added: “It was 2015 the last time I won a gold in the quad, so it’s good to be back. I’m hoping this will be a more consistent year, but it’s great to get the win.”
GB won three silver medals through the men’s double scull, men’s eight and women’s eight, and a bronze from the lightweight women’s double on a frenetic day of racing – shortened due to forecast thunderstorms in the afternoon.
Jack Beaumont and Angus Groom renewed their respective battles with Lithuania and came away with silver. One of the Lithuanian crew edged Groom and Thomas into the B final in Sarasota in 2017, while Beaumont was part of the quad who finished second to the Lithuanians at the same regatta.
Like the quad, Beaumont and Groom had an early battle with Germany before moving through in the second half of the race. The surging Lithuanians upped the rate in the closing meters to get ahead before the line.
Another renewed rivalry was between GB and Germany in the men’s eight, with the British crew coming away with a silver medal. Stroke man Will Satch was the only surviving member of the eight that beat the Germans at Rio 2016 but the crew had to settle for silver on this occasion by less than half a length. Alan Sinclair from Inverness backed Will up in the No 6 seat in a crew which has much more to show in the forthcoming World Cup Regattas, European and World Championships.
The women’s eight overcame the early pace of China to comfortably win silver behind the Netherlands. Six of the eight athletes had earlier competed in the pairs and fours finals but recovered well to take the medal.
Ellie Piggott and Emily Craig took a superb bronze medal in the lightweight double sculls in a new partnership for 2018. The duo raced together in the lightweight quad at the World Championships in 2015 and 2016, winning silver and gold respectively, and say their friendship off the water helped them put together a string of good performances in Belgrade this weekend.
Every boat competing on the final day finished within the top eight in their respective events.
Anastasia Chitty and Rebecca Girling came within half a length of a medal in the first race of the day – the women’s pair. Sitting second to an impressive Canadian crew at the halfway point, Chitty and Girling battled valiantly to hold off the chasing Spanish and Dutch boats, but were edged off the podium in the last 500m.
Emily Ford and Emily Ashford closed their first senior international regatta with a sixth-place finish after a series of impressive performances.
Fiona Gammond, Holly Norton, Karen Bennett and Rebecca Shorten, all of who doubled up in the eight, also came a whisker away from a bronze in the women’s four. GB crossed the line just two tenths of a second behind Russia, who got their bow ball ahead in the last strokes.
The men’s four – James Johnston, Callum McBrierty, Jacob Dawson and Tom Ford – pushed hard in a tightly contested final and finished fifth, just over three seconds down on the gold medallist Dutch crew.
And Vicky Thornley faced some tough competition in the final of the women’s single scull, with three other finalists from Sarasota-Bradenton alongside her. Thornley was edged into fifth place by Annekatrin Thiele in the final stroke.
GB also contested three B finals on Sunday, with Harry Glenister and George Rossiter taking an impressive win in the men’s pair race. Both the lightweight men’s double (Zak Lee-Green and Sam Mottram) and the women’s four (Rebecca Chin, Caragh McMurtry, Sara Parfett and Jo Wratten) were involved in close races and finished second.
British Rowing’s new Director of Performance, Brendan Purcell, said: “It has been a solid opening regatta of the year for British crews, coming up against some strong competition. I’m looking forward to getting to know the athletes better in the weeks ahead of the next World Cup and discussing with the coaching and support staff how we can continue on an upwards trajectory.”
The GB Rowing Team next compete at World Cup 2 in Linz, Austria – the course where Olympic and Paralympic qualification will take place at the 2019 World Rowing Championships.
Women’s pair (W2-) Final
1. Caileigh Filmer & Hillary Janssens (CAN) 6:58.88
2. Anna Boada Peiro & Aina Cid (ESP) 7:04.23
3. Elsbeth Beeres & Laila Youssifou (NED) 7:04.40
4. Anastasia Chitty & Rebecca Girling (GBR1) 7:05.48
6. Emily Ford & Emily Ashford (GBR2) 7:19.67
Women’s four (W4-) Final
1. Netherlands (NED2) 6:27.36
2. Netherlands (NED1) 6:28.65
3. Russia 6:30.13
4. Great Britain (GBR2) (Fiona Gammond, Holly Norton, Karen Bennett, Rebecca Shorten) 6:30.37
Women’s four (W4-) B Final
1. Netherlands (NED3) 6:39.20
2. Great Britain (GBR1) (Rebecca Chin, Caragh McMurtry, Sara Parfett, Jo Wratten) 6:39.83
Lightweight women’s double sculls (LW2x) Final
1. Marieke Keijser & Ilse Paulis (NED) 6:49.27
2. Kirsten McCann & Nicole Van Wyk (RSA) 6:51.30
3. Eleanor Piggott & Emily Craig (GBR1) 6:51.64
Women’s single sculls (W1x) Final
1. Jeannine Gmelin (SUI) 7:22.78
2. Sanita Puspure (IRE) 7:25.30
3. Magdalena Lobnig (AUT) 7:25.51
5.Victoria Thornley (GBR) 7:27.78
Women’s eight (W8+) Final
1. Netherlands (NED) 6:07.22
2. Great Britain (Anastasia Chitty, Rebecca Girling, Rowan McKellar, Harriet Taylor, Karen Bennett, Holly Norton, Fiona Gammond, Rebecca Shorten & cox Matilda Horn) 6:11.13
3. China (CHN1) 6:14.79
Men’s double sculls (M2x) Final
1. Dovydas Nemeravicius & Saulius Ritter (LTU1) 6:08:29
2. Jack Beaumont & Angus Groom (GBR) 6:09.08
3. Timo Piontek & Lars Hartig (GER) 6:10.70
Men’s four (M4-) Final
1. Netherlands (NED2) 5:51.05
2. Netherlands (NED1) 5:52.41
3. Belarus 5:52.42
5. Great Britain (James Johnston, Callum McBrierty, Jacob Dawson, Tom Ford) 5:54.56
Men’s quadruple sculls (M4x) Final
1. Great Britain (Tom Barras, Jonny Walton, Graeme Thomas, John Collins) 5:38.86
2. Germany 5:39.13
3. Norway 5:41.65
Men’s eight (M8+) Final
1. Germany 05:24.91
2. Great Britain (James Rudkin, Josh Bugajski, Tom Jeffery, Ollie Wynne-Griffith, Moe Sbihi, Alan Sinclair, Matthew Tarrant, Will Satch & cox Henry Fieldman) 05:26.01
3. Romania 05:31.48
Men’s pair (M2-) B Final
1. Harry Glenister & George Rossiter (GBR) 6:36.16
2. Paul Schroeter & Laurits Follert (GER1) 6:37.53
3. Malte Grossmann & Finn Schroeder (GER2) 6:39.19
Lightweight men’s double sculls (LM2x) B Final
1. Jiri Simanek & Miroslav Vrastil Jr (CZE) 6:20.67
2. Zak Lee-Green & Sam Mottram (GBR1) 6:21.09
3. Pedro Fraga & Afonso Costa (POR) 6:21.26