Gold and bronze for GB’s
Great Britain’s junior men’s four put in an outstanding performance at this year’s World Junior Championships in Amsterdam today to take gold in 6:01.63 from Germany. The equivalent women’s four won bronze behind Germany and Italy.
"The junior men’s four were outstanding", said GB Performance Director David Tanner today. "They were led until the 1400m mark and then came through the field to win in a classic race. Our women also had a very good race".
The men’s quartet suspected that the Germans might be the main opposition but it was Slovenia who led the race to the 900m stage. Then the Germans came through to pick up the lead with Britain behind them.
At 1400m the British strokeman, Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell, universally known as "Noddy", pushed the rate up beyond 40 to make a kick for home. The move succeeded with the British winning by around three-quarters of a length.
Britain’s junior women’s four had qualified for their final by winning their heat outright earlier in the week. They could not better the Germans today, who went out into a big early lead to have a length on the rest of the field by 750m. At that stage the British were ahead of Belarus but the Italians started to come through, too, and at the 1500m marker it was clear that Italy would take silver behind Germany. Britain held off Australia to take the bronze.
Britain’s junior men’s eight narrowly missed out on a medal when they were fourth in the final race of the Championships. Afterwards the crew were clearly disappointed but they rowed better today than in their semi-final yesterday.
At the 1000m mark they were nudging third place in a race in which New Zealand and Germany had emerged as strong leaders. The USA and Romania both came through and overtook the British briefly before being overhauled again. Yet Italy, completely on the opposite side of the course, came through eventually to take bronze in the dying stages of the racew with Britain in fourth.
Mohammed Sbihi and Charles Cousins were fifth in the junior men’s pair – in their first significant championships since taking up the sport through the lottery-funded ARA’s World Class Start programme which is now sponsored by Siemens.
Sbihi and Cousins, still learning at this level, did not get out to a quick start and they will work on this in training in the future. They were in the middle of the field throughout a race in which Australia took the lead. With 250m to go the British duo probably didn’t have much left in the tank for a finishing sprint and they were caught by the Greeks in the last few strokes to drop back to fifth from fourth.
"We’ve had a very solid championships, marked by a great team spirit and I’m sure we have some talented rowers for the future", added Tanner.
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RESULTS – WORLD JUNIOR Championships
FINALS DAY – 5 August
(Events featuring GB crews only. Full results
1. Germany 7:08.83
2. Italy 7:11.23
3. Lottie Howard-Merrill/Maria Larsen/Emma Young/Zoe
Johnson (GREAT BRITAIN) 7:16.76
4. Australia 7:18.14
5. New Zealand 7:21.38
6. Belarus 7:23.20
1. Australia 6:36.15
2. Serbia & Montenegro 6:38.21
3. Romania 6:39.08
4. Greece 6:42.32
5. Mohammed Sbihi/Chares Cousins (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:45.62
6. Germany 6:48.32
1. Anthony Locke/Lewis Beech/Tom Lucy/Nathaniel
Reilly-O’Donnell (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:01.63
2. Germany 6:03.34
3. Slovenia 6:09.96
4. Italy 6:12.52
5. France 6:13.24
6. Spain 6:20.30
1. New Zealand 5:43.50
2. Germany 5:45.25
3. Italy 5:46.25
4. Karl Hudspith/Will Gray/Freddie Hay/Ryan Bucke/
George Nash/Charlie Brereton/Nick Fearnhead/
Will Orchard/Jack Plummer (GREAT BRITAIN) 5:49.25
5. USA 5:52.21
6. Romania 5:56.64