European Juniors provides good experience

Two GB Rowing Team crews competed at the weekend’s European Junior Championships in Hazewinkel – a women’ s pair and single scull.

Both crews were supported by the GB Rowing Teams Start Programme. Xanthe Weatherhead and Zoe Taylor, from Reading RC, were eighth overall in the pair. Flo Pickles, of Gloucester-Hartpury, reached the final of the women’s single and took fifth place overall.

The overall event, which clashes each year with the National Schools Regatta in the UK, was dominated by the Romanians who won six of the 13 gold medals on offer as well as a silver and a bronze.

Pickles had an excellent regatta and showed real maturity in her semi-final race when she kept to her plan and overhauled the Serbian sculler in the last 250 metres to gain that valuable A Final slot and then stepped up again just four hours later to take fifth in a race won by Belarus.

Both crews and their coaches have benefited from the experience of racing at the event, which was efficiently organised by the Belgian hosts, and with plenty of thoughts about how to move on in their training.

“Overall the event also gave everyone a chance to test themselves against some of the best in Europe ahead of the World Junior Championships later this year”, said GB Rowing Team manager Peter Sheppard.