Tuesday, June 17, 2014
Impressive International Range of Rowers at the World Rowing Cup II
Lake Aiguebelette will host nearly 700 athletes from 46 nations. Strong rowing countries like Australia and New Zealand are making the trip to Europe, as well as the United States and Canada. This means tough competition for last year’s World Cup overall winner, Great Britain.
A full schedule of racing includes Olympic, International and Para-rowing boat classes. China has entered all Olympic boat classes, with Great Britain and Germany the next biggest teams in this area. Of the five Para-rowing boat classes Poland, Ukraine and Russia have entered the most, with four boat classes each.
The lightweight men’s double is the most popular boat class with 30 entries. This includes local favourites Stany Delayre and Jeremie Azou (FRA). Delayre and Azou became European Champions earlier this month, but they will face World Champions Kristoffer Brun and Are Standli (NOR) in the quest for World Cup points.
The women’s double sculls has created a lot of interest with Magdalena Fularczyk and Natalia Madaj (POL) looking to lead the way. Multiple World and Olympic Champion Ekaterina Karsten (BLR) is back in the boat, with Olympic and World medallist Yulia Bichyk, to form a formidable combination. Karsten, who just turned 42 years, is into her third decade of international competition.
Emma Twigg (NZL) won the women’s single sculls over Olympic Champion Mirka Knapkova (CZE) at the World Rowing Cup I in Sydney and the two will meet again in Aiguebelette for some high intensity racing. In the men’s single sculls, Ondrej Synek (CZE) continues to look unbeatable. Olympic Champion Mahe Drysdale (NZL) returns to international racing to challenge Synek along with top sculler Marcel Hacker (GER).
World and Olympic champions USA in the women’s eight and World Champion Great Britain in the men’s eights will add to an exciting finish to the regatta.
The regatta starts on the afternoon of 19 June with Para-rowing heats and continues to 22 June 2014. The heats on 20 June will be in time trials format in order to prepare all rowers for possible contingency scenarios at some point in the future. The rest of the races will follow the FISA progression system leading to the finals on 22 June.
Full entries and provisional timetable can be found at www.worldrowing.com The World Rowing media centre includes a media guide for the event (online as of yesterday, 16 June 2014) at http://www.worldrowing.com/mediacenter/
Race reports, live results, live blogging, live race tracker and a photo gallery will be available on www.worldrowing.com throughout the regatta.