CAPPING OFF THE WORLD ROWING CUP SEASON

The 2017 World Rowing Cup season wrapped up in one of rowing’s favourite locations, the Rotsee in Lucerne, Switzerland. This is the final World Rowing regatta before the all-important World Rowing Championships and it saw rowers aim to establish their position on the world level.

Unrivalled at this regatta was New Zealand who won gold medals in six Olympic boat class races putting them at the top of the medals table and well ahead of Italy in second with two gold medals. New Zealand’s golds came in both the men’s and women’s double sculls, the men’s and women’s pair as well as the men’s single sculls and lightweight women’s double sculls.

The men’s double turned out to be one of the most brutal races of the day with the leading New Zealand crew of John Storey and Chris Harris admitting that they had to keep their speed at top gear the whole way to stay in the lead. Pushing New Zealand to the end was Poland (Miroslaw Zietarski and Mateusz Biskup) and Italy (Filippo Mondelli and Luca Rambaldi). After the race Storey said, “We couldn’t get rid of the others. We took the rate up and up, but they still kept with us.”

For the women’s double New Zealand winners Brooke Donoghue and Olivia Loe got to the podium along with two French boats. France’s number two crew of Noemie Kober and Marie Le Nepvou got into the bronze medal spot by sprinting through from the back of the field at the end of the race.

The Swiss crowd got treated to a local win in the women’s single sculls when Jeannine Gmelin gave it her all to lead from start to finish. Gmelin won over Canada’s Carling Zeeman and Magdalena Lobnig of Austria. For the men’s single sculls, winner of last month’s World Rowing Cup, Robert Manson of New Zealand, won again in Lucerne with a dominating performance. Cuba’s Angel Fournier Rodriguez earned his second silver of the season and Belarus’s Stanislau Shcharbachenia took a well-deserved bronze.

The women’s eight saw the return of Romania to the top spot with New Zealand and Great Britain following in second and third respectively. Germany was the top boat in the men’s eight despite a strong finish by Australia who nearly got into gold in the close of the race. The Netherlands was third.

Podiums Sunday
© FISA Igor Meijer

At the top of the points table for this World Rowing Cup was New Zealand with 58 points. Great Britain was in second with 34 points and Italy was just one point behind on 33. Overall World Cup points leader for the season was Great Britain who finished with 134 points. New Zealand was in second with 108 points and Poland finished third with 91 points.

The next senior World Rowing event for 2017 is the World Rowing Championships which will take place in Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida, USA. This begins on 24 September and goes through to 1 October.

The World Rowing Cup series was launched in 1997 and consists of a series of three events. The overall World Rowing Cup winners are determined after the third event. This year, the three stages of the series are Belgrade, SRB (5-7 May), Poznan, POL (16-18 June) and Lucerne, SUI (7-9 July).

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