GB Rowing Team men’s four sets new world best time

Andrew Triggs Hodge, Tom James, Peter Reed and Alex Gregory blew apart the world best time for the men’s four in winning their world cup heat in 5:37.86 in Lucerne today.

The quartet moved up through the field to lead at halfway and turned on the power to take the verdict by considerable clearwater and smash the previous mark of 5:41.35 – set by Germany at the 2002 World Championships.

Tom James said the quartet did not set out to take the record: “We set out to win our heat and we didn’t want to hide away from hard work, even in a heat, if it gave us speed.

“The World Best Time is nice but we’re here to beat people and to put in that kind of performance consistently”. Australia also looked fast in winning the opposing heat.

Earlier World Champions Anna Watkins and Katherine Grainger cruised through their women’s double scull heat to reach Sunday’s final here at the World Rowing Cup in Lucerne.

Watkins said: “It was a really enjoyable race. We felt really in control and it’s great to have strong opposition to race”.

Olympic champions Zac Purchase and Mark Hunter appeared to be pacing themselves when they finished second in their heat.

Elsewhere there were good wins for the women’s pair of Helen Glover and Heather Stanning, the men’s single and two lightweight single scullers and qualifying performances from the second women’s pair and both men’s pairs but disappointment for the men’s eight – who were third behind Canada and Poland – and the two open quads who will now race repechages.

“We’ve seen the high standard here that we expected and we have had a strong morning but not everything has gone our way. There is plenty to play for in tomorrow’s semis”, said GB Rowing Team Performance Director David Tanner.


Andrew Triggs Hodge stroked the 2012 GB Rowing Team men’s four into a canvas lead over New Zealand by the 500m mark in today’s heat. Germany had been the early leaders but faded back to third at halfway.

GB still held the lead at 1500m with a four-second buffer according to the race timing. Described as “comfortable” by the commentators as they approached the Grandstands, Hodge, Tom James, Peter Reed and Alex Gregory dominated the finishing phases to win in 5:37.86.

Gasps from the crowd and cheers from the GB supporters. This was a new world best time, smashing the mark set in a raging tailwind in Seville at the 2002 World Championships.

Unaware, the GB crew began their warm down fairly quickly. Only as they passed the grandstands on the return to the boat-houses did they realise their feat. Hodge raised his hand in the air to celebrate.

The GB men’s eight, reigning World Silver meddalists, knew they had a stiff task if they were to follow the four’s lead and qualify directly for Sunday’s final with a resurgent Canada in their heat as well as the fast-finishing Poles.

Canada, the Olympic champions, got out to an early lead and were never caught, setting a world’s best time of 5:19.35. Poland came back on Great Britain in the final 300m to grab second but they and the GB eight will now race a repechage tomorrow.

James Foad stroked today’s GB combination which included Marcus Bateman as a replacement for the still recovering Constantine Louloudis who missed Belgrade because of a back injury.

Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell and Cameron Nichol, racing in the second GB Rowing Team men’s pair here in Lucerne, could not have had a tougher draw in their opening heat. They raced the reigning World Champions Hamish Bond and Eric Murray from New Zealand as well as Beijing medallists Scott Frandsen and Dave Calder.

New Zealand were the winners, as anticipated, but not before the Canadians had led for a while early in the race. Nichol and Reilly O’Donnell tucked in behind Canada and New Zealand and maintained the third qualifying slot throughout to book a place in tomorrow’s semi-finals.

Germany took the early lead in the final men’s pair heat of the morning featuring George Nash and Will Satch, for Great Britain. By halfway though the roles had been reversed, with the British duo moving a length out ahead of the field.

With 300m to go Nash and Satch looked set up for the victory but a last minute burst gave Australia 1, crewed by James Marburg and Brodie Buckland, the heat win with GB second but safely through to the semi-finals.

Alan Campbell has a lot of racing to do here. The entry in the men’s single is big enough to warrant quarter-finals as well as semi-finals before Sunday’s final.

It was not surprising therefore that Campbell eased down to win his heat in an otherwise untroubled performance that took him through ahead of a field that included Olympic Champion Olaf Tufte of Norway.

Bill Lucas and Sam Townsend were third at halfway in the final men’s double scull heat this morning. They had left themselves with some ground to gain back against Olympic Champions David Brennan and Scott Brennan of Australia and the Norwegian duo of Hoff and Borch.

Safely through in third place eventually, their final finishing burst was not quite enough to snatch second.

“It was a tough race today and we stuck to our sculling and tried to grind out a result”, said Townsend later. The duo were already clearly focussed on what needs to be done tomorrow rather than dwelling on today.

Much earlier in the morning, Helen Glover and Heather Stanning were clear winners of the opening women’s pair heats in Lucerne this morning just as the misty morning sun began to disappear behind thin cloud.

The World silver medallists were two seconds ahead by 500m and more than twice that as the crews approached the grandstands before closing out the win in 7:05.93.

Jo Cook and Olivia Carnegie Brown, racing as Great Britain 2, will feature with them in tomorrow’s semi-finals by taking third spot in their heat that was won by the USA. World Champions Juliette Haigh and Rebecca Scown of New Zealand were winners of the final heat.

Much later in the morning and under sunny and breezy conditions, Anna Watkins and Katherine Grainger were a comfortable length ahead of Germany as their women’s double scull heat reached the halfway point.

The World Champions last met their German opponents, Britta Oppelt and Annekatrin Thiele, in the final of the world cup in Belgrade three weeks ago. On that occasion the British took gold and the Germans silver. Today in a lower-key race to the line the British were winners in 6:32.49 to qualify direct for tomorrow’s final where they will again meet the Germans who took the second spot.

Afterwards they were clearly delighted with the win: “We had a really enjoyable race and felt in control”, said Watkins.

World and Olympic Champions, the USA, set a world best time in winning their women’s eight heat. Britain, with Olympic quad silver medallists Debbie Flood and Annabel Vernon joining the habitual members of the crew, were second and not outclassed which sets them up well for the repechage.

Mel Wilson, Beth Rodford, Vicky Thornley and Frances Houghton have some food for thought before tomorrow’s women’s quad repechage after finishing fourth in today’s heat. The British women were second at 500m but dropped back as the race moved through halfway. China and the USA both overhauled them.

Fourth at half-way, five seconds off the lead, the GB men’s quadruple scull of Stephen Rowbotham, Matt Wells, Charles Cousins and Tom Solesbury looked to be ring-rusty.

In the final 500m they dropped back another place and will now race a repechage.

Azou and Delayre of France were the early leaders in the lightweight men’s double scull heat in which Olympic Champions Zac Purchase and Mark Hunter were racing for Great Britain. The French still had a length lead at 1000m with China in third.

In a comfortable race to the line, the British duo looked relaxed in second in 6:30.87 at the line.

Storm Uru and Peter Taylor, World silver medallists in 2011, were winners of a closely contested earlier heat from Canada and Denmark.

Injury to Peter Chambers means that the GB Lightweight men’s four here features 2010 World Champion Paul Mattick instead along with the older Chambers brother Richard, Rob Williams and Chris Bartley.

In a re-run of their exciting clash in the heats in Belgrade three weeks ago the British and Chinese crews battled head-to-head at the front of the field, with the lead swapping hands several times.

In the final row to the line, China had pole position with GB, on the far side, racing a contained finish to take second and book their place in the semi-finals.

The lightweight women’s double scull racing, almost produced back to back world best times with New Zealand’s Louise Ayling and Julia Edward setting the benchmark first at 6:49.43 in a heat where the British duo of Sophie Hosking and Kat Copeland had moved up from third to seond in the second half to track them to the line.

The Kiwis delight could have been short-lived, though, as Greece’s World Champions, winners of the second heat, thundered towards the line. In the end they were three hundredths of a second short – setting up what should be a dramatic final. GB will now need to progress through the repechage.

Adam Freeman Pask made a big statement early in his heat of the lightweight men’s single scull. He took a three-lengths lead at one stage and then sat out front to win and book a place in tomorrow’s semi-finals. As usual this event opened the world cup programme in Lucerne with semi-finals tomorrow morning and finals tomorrow evening. The lightweight women’s single and men’s pair have the same programme.

Kathryn Twyman followed Freeman Pask in winning her heat in style with the added bonus of direct qualification to tomorrow’s final.



Pair – Heat 1
1 Helen Glover/Heather Stanning (GREAT BRITAIN 1) 7:05.93
2 Yage Zhang/Yulan Gao (China 1) 7:10.51
3 Maria Laura Abalo/Gabriela Best (Argentina) 7:11.09
4 Naydene Smith/Lee-Ann Persse (South Africa) 7:12.27
5 Carolyn Ganes/Larissa Lagzdins (Canada 1) 7:12.99

Pair – Heat 2
1 Erin Cafaro/Eleanor Logan (USA 1) 7:06.40
2 Sarah Tait/Kate Hornsey (Australia 1) 7:13.27
3 Jo Cook/Olivia Carnegie-Brown (GREAT BRITAIN 2) 7:18.01
4 You Wu/Xiaoxia Yan (China 2) 7:36.04

Eight – Heat 2
1 USA 5:54.17
2 Olivia Whitlam/Debbie Flood/Emily Taylor/Jessica Eddie/Louisa Reeve/Natasha Page/Katie Greves/Annabel Vernon/Caroline O’Connor (cox) (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:01.85
3 Belarus 6:07.44

Double scull – Heat 1
1 Anna Watkins/Katherine Grainger (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:47.54
2 Britta Oppelt/Annekatrin Thiele (Germany 1) 6:49.66
3 Lenka Antosova/Jitka Antosova (Czech Republic) 6:53.99
4 Yan Jiang/Rong Li (China 2) 6:55.82
5 Anna Kravchenko/Olena Buryak (Ukraine) 6:59.08

Quadruple scull – Heat 1
1 Germany 1 6:09.38
2 USA 1 6:10.09
3 China 6:11.55
4 Beth Rodford/Melanie Wilson/Frances Houghton/Victoria Thornley (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:16.18
5 Australia 6:16.90


Pair – Heat 1
1 Eric Murray/Hamish Bond (New Zealand) 6:27.02
2 Dave Calder/Scott Frandsen (Canada 1) 6:30.41
3 Nathaniel Reilly-O’Donnell/Cameron Nichol (GREAT BRITAIN 2) 6:33.08
4 Spencer Crowley/Will Dean (Canada 2) 6:41.08
5 Robert Luecken/David Kuiper (Netherlands 2) 7:13.76

Pair – Heat 3
1 James Marburg/Brodie Buckland (Australia 1) 6:33.54
2 George Nash/William Satch (GREAT BRITAIN 1) 6:34.90
3 Anton Braun/Felix Drahotta (Germany) 6:51.31
4 Joaquin Iwan/Diego Lopez (Argentina) 6:58.04
5 Thomas Larkins/Nick Hudson (Australia 3) 7:04.86

Four – Heat 1
1 Alex Gregory/Pete Reed/Tom James/Andrew Triggs Hodge (GREAT BRITAIN) 5:37.86
2 New Zealand 5:45.31
3 Canada 5:47.01
4 Germany 2 5:50.83
5 Belarus 5:56.73

Eight – Heat 1
1 Canada 5:19.35
2 Poland 5:21.75
3 Greg Searle/Alex Partridge/Marcus Bateman/Tom Ransley/Mohamed Sbihi/Richard Egington/Matt Langridge/James Foad/Phelan Hill (cox) (GREAT BRITAIN) 5:22.71
4 Ukraine 5:32.42
Single scull – Heat 1
1 Alan Campbell (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:48.24
2 Mathias Rocher (Germany 3) 6:56.07
3 Olaf Tufte (Norway) 7:01.86
4 Jan Spik (Slovenia 2) 7:04.66
5 Paul Etia Ndoumbe (Cameroon) 7:30.59

Double scull – Heat 3
1 David Crayshaw/Scott Brennan (Australia 1) 6:18.11
2 Nils Jakob Hoff/Kjetil Borch (Norway) 6:18.93
3 Bill Lucas/Sam Townsend (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:19.20
4 Dirk Uittenbogaard/Freek Robbers (Netherlands) 6:37.37
5 Sergii Gryn/Volodymyr Pavlovskyi (Ukraine) 6:50.96

Quadruple scull – Heat 2
1 Russia 5:33.15
2 New Zealand 5:35.90
3 Australia 5:37.05
4 Estonia 5:38.99
5 Stephen Rowbotham/Tom Solesbury/Matthew Wells/Charles Cousins (GREAT BRITAIN) 5:39.40


Single scull – Heat 2
1 Kathryn Twyman (GREAT BRITAIN) 7:47.93
2 Enrica Marasca (Italy) 7:51.79
3 Lucia Palermo (Argentina) 7:52.45
4 Cecilia Lilja (Sweden 1) 7:57.41
5 Anna Ioannou (Cyprus) 8:00.85
6 Manami Hayashi (Japan) 8:04.42

Double scull – Heat 1
1 Louise Ayling/Julia Edward (New Zealand) 6:49.43
2 Sophie Hosking/Katherine Copeland (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:52.66
3 Kristin Hedstrom/Julie Nichols (USA) 6:54.72
4 Jing Liu/Feihong Pan (China 2) 6:59.28
5 Lindsay Jennerich/Tracy Cameron (Canada) 7:01.60
6 Luana De Assis/Fabiana Beltrame (Brazil) 7:13.17


Single scull – Heat 1
1 Adam Freeman-Pask (GREAT BRITAIN) 7:02.80
2 Frederic Hanselmann (Switzerland) 7:07.11
3 Damien Piqueras (France 2) 7:13.56
4 Juan Jiminez Regules (Mexico) 7:17.91
5 Jonas Schuetzeberg (Germany 2) 7:19.51
6 Abdelmohsen Massoud (Eqypt) 7:23.03

Double scull – Heat 3
1 Stany Delayre/Jeremie Azou (France) 6:27.54
2 Zac Purchase/Mark Hunter (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:30.87
3 Fangbing Zhang/Jie Sun (China) 6:32.07
4 Kazushige Ura/Daisaku Takeda (Japan) 6:51.65
5 Mario Cejas/Miguel Mayol (Argentina) 6:55.39

Four – Heat 1
1 China 5:56.71
2 Paul Mattick/Rob Williams/Richard Chambers/Chris Bartley (GREAT BRITAIN) 5:59.22
3 France 1 6:02.10
4 Poland 6:17.22
5 France 2 6:19.21


(See home-towns, clubs and dates of birth in list below. Named here in crews bow to stroke unless indicated. (Coach in brackets).

Lucerne, Switzerland 25-27 May, 2012



Pair – two boats

Helen Glover/Heather Stanning
(Robin Williams)

Jo Cook/Olivia Carnegie Brown
(Nick Strange)


Olivia Whitlam/Debbie Flood/Emily Taylor/Jessica Eddie/Louisa Reeve/Natasha Page/Katie Greves/Annabel Vernon/Caroline O’Connor (cox)
(Nick Strange)

Single scull – Olympic qualifying regatta only

Rachel Gamble Flint
(Jane Hall)

Double scull

Anna Watkins/Katherine Grainger
(Paul Thompson)

Quadruple scull

Beth Rodford/Melanie Wilson/Frances Houghton/Victoria Thornley
(Ade Roberts)


Pair – two boats

George Nash/Will Satch
(Paul Stannard & Christian Felkel)

Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell/Cameron Nichol
(Paul Stannard)


Alex Gregory/Pete Reed//Tom James/Andrew Triggs Hodge
(Jurgen Grobler)


Greg Searle/Alex Partridge/Marcus Bateman/Tom Ransley/Moe Sbihi/Ric Egington/Matt Langridge/James Foad/Phelan Hill (cox)
(John West & Christian Felkel)

Single scull – two boats

Alan Campbell
(Bill Barry)

Double scull

Bill Lucas/Sam Townsend
(Mark Earnshaw)

Quadruple scull

Stephen Rowbotham /Tom Solesbury/Matt Wells/Charles Cousins
(Mark Banks)



Single scull

Kathryn Twyman
(Paul Reedy)

Double scull – two boats

Sophie Hosking/Kat Copeland
(Paul Reedy)



Paul Mattick/Rob Williams/Richard Chambers/Chris Bartley
(Rob Morgan)


Adam Freeman-Pask
(Rob Morgan & Darren Whiter)

Double scull

Zac Purchase/Mark Hunter
(Darren Whiter)



PAIR (Boat 1)
Helen Glover Minerva Bath Penzance 17/06/86
Heather Stanning Army RC Lossiemouth 26/01/85
Coach: Robin Williams

PAIR (Boat 2)

Jo Cook Leander Club Sunbury-on-Thames 22/03/84
Olivia Carnegie-Brown Oxford Brookes Univ BC Oxford 28/03/1991


Olivia Whitlam Agecroft RC Warrington 16/09/85
Debbie Flood Leander Club Guiseley, W Yorks 27/02/1980
Emily Taylor Leander Club Lincoln 28/06/87
Jessica Eddie Univ of London BC Durham 07/10/84
Louisa Reeve Leander Club London 16/05/84
Natasha Page Gloucester RC Hartpury 30/04/85
Katie Greves Leander Club Oxford 02/09/82
Annabel Vernon Leander Club Wadebridge 01/09/82
Caroline O’Connor (cox) Oxford Brookes Univ BC Ealing, London 25/04/83
Coach: Nick Strange

Single Scull – Olympic qualifying Regatta only
Rachel Gamble-Flint Leander Club Darlington 13/09/91
Coach: Jane Hall

Double Scull
Anna Watkins Leander Club Leek, Staffs. 13/02/83
Katherine Grainger St Andrew BC Aberdeen 12/11/75
Coach: Paul Thompson

Quadruple Scull
Beth Rodford Gloucester RC Gloucester 28/12/82
Melanie Wilson Imperial College BC London 25/06/84
Frances Houghton Leander Club Oxford 19/09/80
Victoria Thornley Leander Club Wrexham 30/11/87
Coach: Ade Roberts


Pair (Boat 1)
George Nash Molesey BC Guildford 02/10/89
Will Satch Leander Club Henley-on-Thames 09/06/89
Coaches: Christian Felkel & Paul Stannard

Pair (Boat 2)
Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell Uni of London BC Durham 13/04/88
Cameron Nichol Molesey BC Glastonbury 26/06/87


Alex Gregory Leander Club Wormington 11/03/84
Pete Reed Leander Club Nailsworth, Glos 27/07/81
Tom James Molesey BC Wrexham 11/03/84
Andrew Triggs Hodge Molesey BC Hebden, N. Yorks 03/03/79
Coach: Jürgen Grobler

Greg Searle Molesey BC Marlow 20/03/72
Alex Partridge Leander Club Alton, Hants 25/01/81
Marcus Bateman Leander Club Torquay 16/09/1982
Tom Ransley York City RC Cambridge 06/09/85
Mohamed Sbihi Molesey BC Surbiton 27/03/88
Richard Egington Leander Club Knutsford 26/02/79
Matthew Langridge Leander Club Northwich 20/05/83
James Foad Molesey BC Southampton 20/03/87
Cox – Phelan Hill Leander Bedford 21/07/79
Coaches: John West & Christian Felkel

Single Scull (Boat 1)
Alan Campbell Tideway Scullers School Coleraine 09/05/83
Coach: Bill Barry

Double Scull
Bill Lucas London RC Kingswear 13/09/87
Sam Townsend Reading Univ BC Reading 26/11/85
Coach: Mark Earnshaw

Quadruple Scull

Stephen Rowbotham Leander Club Winscombe, Somerset 11/11/81
Matthew Wells Leander Club Hexham, Northumberland 19/04/79
Tom Solesbury Leander Club Petts Wood, Kent 23/09/80
Charles Cousins Reading Univ BC Willingham, Cambs 13/12/88

Coach: Mark Banks



Single Scull
Kathryn Twyman Wallingford RC Oxford 29/03/87
Coach: Paul Reedy

Double Scull
Sophie Hosking London RC Wimbledon 25/01/86
Katherine Copeland Tees RC Ingleby Barwick, Stockton-on-Tees 01/12/90
Coach: Paul Reedy


Single Scull

Adam Freeman-Pask Imperial College BC Windsor 19/06/85
Coaches: Rob Morgan & Darren Whiter

Paul Mattick Leander Club Frome, Somerset 25/04/78
Rob Williams London RC Maidenhead 21/01/85
Richard Chambers Leander Club Coleraine 10/06/85
Chris Bartley Leander Club Chester 02/02/84
Coach: Rob Morgan

Double Scull
Zac Purchase Marlow RC Tewkesbury 02/05/86
Mark Hunter Leander Club Romford, Essex 01/07/78
Coach: Darren Whiter


(Provisional – subject to change dependent on the draw and weather)

Friday 25 May

09.00 – 18.30 Heats and repechages – international and Olympic classes

Saturday 26 May

09.30 – 10.05 Semi-finals of the international classes
13.30 – 16.00 Reps and semi-finals Olympic classes
16.05 – 17.00 Finals of the international classes

Sunday 27 May

09.00 – 10.20 B Finals
10.22 – 14.40 FINALS – Olympic classes


Lucerne, Switzerland, 25-27 May (all time – UK Times)

• Red Button – Sunday 27 May, 0920-1045 & 1200-1355
• BBC2 – Sunday 27, May 1800-1900
BBC Radio 5 live and BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra will also be providing coverage during the three rowing World Cup regattas with double Olympic Gold medallist James Cracknell forming part of the commentary team

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