GB Rowing Team tops medal table at World Championships

Anna Watkins and Katherine Grainger played their role as favourites in the women’s double scull final to perfection on New Zealand’s Lake Karapiro to take gold and help boost the Great Britain Rowing Team to the top of the medal table on the closing afternoon of the 2010 World Championships.

The GB men’s eight – in which 38 year-old Greg Searle won his first world championships medal since 1997 –  as well as Marcus Bateman and Matt Wells in the men’s double scull added two further silvers bringing the overall tally to  five golds, five silver and one bronze medal.

Germany equalled GB on golds but were second on silvers, New Zealand were third overall. Britain also topped the Olympic boats overall medal tally with New Zealand in second.

Of Great Britain’s medals all bar one gold and one silver – won earlier in the week in the Paralympic classes – were won by Olympic boats.  34 British rowers, from the Siemens and Lottery-backed GB squad, will now return to the UK as world championships medallists and 53 rowers are now ranked in the world’s top six – making this regatta Britain’s best World Championships of all-time by any measure.

David Tanner, the GB Rowing Team’s Performance Director, said:  “I am very proud of our team. We travelled to the other side of the world and had produced our best World Championships performance ever.  It’s a credit to the rowers, the coaches and the back-up team.

“In the Olympic classes our four golds, four silvers and a bronze make the right statement on the way to the 2012 Games.

“Our approach for these Championships is that they are the start of the 2011 Olympic qualifying season and after a short break we will pick up that mission again with London in our sights”.

Earlier on the final day’s race programme, the GB women’s eight were disappointed at taking fourth place whilst Peter Chambers was sixth in the lightweight men’s single scull in the day’s other two finals.

The team’s press officer, Caroline Searle, can be contacted in New Zealand until midnight Sunday (UK time) on:  00 64 27 49 77493 or press@matchtight.co.uk and from then from Wednesday from 2pm onwards UK time on (07831) 755351.

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RACE REPORTS

Katherine Grainger and Anna Watkins came to Karapiro unbeaten all year in the women’s double scull. They won their heat on Monday and then had the long wait until today to race again. This, then, was a world championships in contrast to their season which has previously featured three world cups in which they have doubled up racing both the double and the quadruple scull and bagging five golds and a silver in a packed racing schedule.

Off the start today, they were in the lane next to the reigning world champions from Poland, Magdalena Fularczyk and Julia Michalska.

By the 250m mark Grainger and Watkins had a canvas lead with only the USA getting a bad start in an otherwise flat field.  By 500m the GB crew had a second’s advantage over the opposition with Germany and Australia in contention.

At halfway the British duo were looking strong. They led by over a length from Australia in second with the Germans, Czechs and Poles behind them.

Watkins permitted herself several glances across the field to check on progress in the third phase. She would have been pleased with what she saw. At 1500m they had a six second lead.  No-one was going to get back on terms from there. Victory to GB in 7:04.70.  Australia’s Kerry Hore and Kim Crow second and Poland third.

“When we got to the start we felt that this was our race and our time”, said Grainger. “We are a powerful and physical double but we also wanted to show we can be technical as well. At the start it was calm but then a bit of a wind blew up and we just powered down the course”.

Watkins spoke of the long wait to race:  “That was a job well done today but the waiting is the toughest part.  Time goes slower as it gets closer. Then today the knot lifted out of my stomach and I knew we were ready to race. I haven’t heard the national anthem for me since the world U23s. It feels great”.

Next down the track for GB came Marcus Bateman and Matt Wells – a new combination this season in the men’s double scull.  Wells previously won bronze in Beijing with Stephen Rowbotham. They led at 500m and then at 1000m and 1500m. The Kiwis, though, third at 500m, moved up on their shoulders.  Surely the margin was enough for GB to control it all from there?

Nathan Cohen and Joseph Sullivan, roared on by their home crowd, had a different take on things and began to come back on GB. They dogged them and dogged them and dogged them until they got ahead in the final 250m. The roar from the crowd was deafening. Wells and Bateman worked hard to get back on terms but, at the line, lost out by just over two seconds.  New Zealand in 6:22.63, GB second in 6:24.21 and France in third.

“With 750m to go I felt we were controlling the  race” said Bateman.  “But they kept coming and coming. They really lifted their game in the final 250m and we lost length in the stroke by tying up”.

“That’s doubles racing for you”, said Wells. “It’s always close and exciting”.

Earlier in the regatta, by winning their heat, the GB men’s eight had laid down a marker which said they had the capacity to go fast here.

In the first half of today’s final the crew, stroked by Dan Ritchie, worked with  cohesion and rhythm to create a platform from which they could attack the leaders, Germany and Australia, in the second half.

By 500m they were third but well in contention. At 750m gone they put in a push to vie with Australia for second.  Just past the halfway point they were looking good and, having nosed past Australia, they set out to chase Germany, the reigning world champions. Another 100m of lake and they might have  made it.  Ultimately, gold went to Germany in 5:33.84 with GB in silver in 5:34.46 and bronze to Australia.

This was a stepping up performance from this crew who have developed strongly over the past few months.

“We raced really well”, said Searle afterwards. “I’m proud of what we have done – all 11 of us, the nine guys in the boat and the two coaches. It’s not gold but step by step we are moving up”.

“There are mixed emotions. Obviously, we set out to win and came very close which was a disappointment.  But then we are proud to have won a silver medal.  If you had offered me a silver a year ago I’d have taken that. It’s a four-year project with gold in 2012 as the goal”, added cox Phelan Hill.

“Dan Ritchie added:  “To come back from injury last year and get this result is fantastic. Hats off to the Germans, though”.

James Foad said:   “We had a good race plan and stuck to it. We thought it was a plan that would win us the gold medal and it nearly paid off. It wasn’t what we wanted but we’ve got a lot to look forward to next year.”

Moe Sbihi said:  “We had a solid start – it may have looked as if we got dropped but we felt confident and coming into the last 500m we thought we would get there. We’ve got to feel positive and proud with that result and we’ll come back stronger next year.”

James Clarke said: “We knew that other crews would go off fast but we stuck to our plan. We know what our 100% feels like and we had faith in what we can do. I’m really proud of where this crew has come from – 5th last year and bronze in Lucerne – we have really stepped on since then.”

The women’s eight did not have the brightest of finals today by their own growing standards.  They dropped behind the pace in the first 500m and struggled to get back into contention with the race leaders from that point onwards.

Fifth at 500m, they pulled back up into fourth at the halfway only to slip back again in the final 600m before taking fourth by a narrow margin.

Olivia Whitlam said:  “We weren’t good enough today. That is as fast as we could get from “a” to “b”. It’s back to the drawing board”.

Peter Galambos, the Hungarian world cup overall winner, made the early pace in today’s lightweight men’s single scull final featuring Peter Chambers, younger brother of Richard who yesterday won gold in GB’s lightweight men’s four.

For Coleraine’s Chambers, still an U23, it was an enormous stride forward to reach the final here and he is clearly a talent for the future.  At the 500m mark in today’s final he was sixth but only three seconds down on the lead.  At the halfway mark he was still in touch in a race now led by Italy with Slovakia and Hungary in close quarters in second and third.

In this phase of the race, Chambers began to drop back further and finished sixth in 7:22.00, having made a strong debut impression at his first senior world championships.  Italy took gold, Slovakia second and Hungary third.

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RESULTS
(Events featuring GB crews only.  For full results visit:  www.worldrowing.com)

OPEN

WOMEN

Eight

1.  USA 6:12.42
2.  Canada 6:16.12
3.  Romania 6:18.96
4.  Jo Cook/Louisa Reeve/Jess Eddie/Lindsey Maguire/Natasha Page/
Vicky Thornley/Olivia Whitlam/Alison Knowles/Caroline O’Connor (cox) (GREAT BRITAIN)
6:20.84
5.  Netherlands 6:20.85
6.  China 6:31.86

Double scull

1.  Anna Watkins/Katherine Grainger (GREAT BRITAIN) 7:04.70
2.  Kerry Hore/Kim Crow (Australi) 7:10.08
3.  Magdelena Fularczyk/Julia Michalska (Poland) 7:14.40
4.  Jitka & Lenka Antosova (Czech Republic) 7:15.04
5.  Stesha Carle/Kathleen Bertko (USA) 7:16.99
6.  Annekatrin Thiele/Stephanie Schiller (Germany) 7:21.60

OPEN

MEN

Eight

1.  Germany 5:33.84
2.  Tom Broadway/James Clarke/Cameron Nichol/James Foad/
Mohamed Sbihi/Greg Searle/Tom Ransley/Dan Ritchie/Phelan Hill (cox)
(GREAT BRITAIN) 5:34.46
3.  Australia 5:35.96
4.  Netherlands 5:37.03
5.  New Zealand 5:38.46
6.  USA 5:40.55

Double scull

1.  Nathan Cohen/Joseph Sullivan (New Zealand) 6:22.63
2.  Matt Wells/Marcus Bateman (GREAT BRITAIN) 6:24.21
3.  Cedric Berrest/Julien Bahain (France) 6:28.54
4.  Jakob Nils Hoff/Kjetil Borch (Norway) 6:31.08
5.  Nick Hudson/Jared Bidwell (Australia) 6:31.57
6.  Eric Knittel/Stephan Krueger (Germany) 6:33.89

LIGHTWEIGHT

MEN

Single scull

1.  Marcello Miani (Italy) 7:05.82
2.  Lukas Babac (Slovakia) 7:08.19
3.  Peter Galambos (Hungary) 7:09.86
4.  Henrik Stephansen (Denmark) 7:11.28
5.  Daisaku Takeda (Japan) 7:16.65
6.  Peter Chambers (GREAT BRITAIN) 7:22.00

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GB ROWING TEAM CREW-LISTS
2010 World Rowing Championships, Lake Karapiro,
New Zealand, October 31-November 7, 2010
(listed bow to stroke plus cox)

OPEN

WOMEN

Pair

Helen Glover (Reading Uni BC/Penzance/17.06.86)/
Heather Stanning (Army RC/Lossiemouth/26.01.85)

Coach: Miles Forbes Thomas

Eight

Jo Cook (Leander Club/Sunbury-on-Thames/22.03.84)/
Louisa Reeve (Leander Club/London/16.05.84)/
Jessica Eddie (Uni of London BC/Durham/07.10.84)/
Victoria Thornley (Minerva Bath RC/Wrexham/30.11.87)/
Natasha Page (Reading Uni BC/Hartpury/30.04.85)/
Lindsey Maguire (Wallingford RC/Edinburgh/15.01.82)/
Olivia Whitlam (Agecroft RC/Warrington/16.09.85)/
Alison Knowles (Thames RC/Bournemouth/27.03.82)/
Caroline O’Connor (Oxford Brookes Uni BC/Ealing/25.04.83) (cox)

Coach: Miles Forbes Thomas

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

Debbie Flood (Leander Club/Guiseley/27.02.80)/
Beth Rodford (Gloucester RC/Gloucester/28.12.82)/
Frances Houghton (Tyrian Club, Uni of London/Henley/19.9.80)/
Annabel Vernon (London RC/Wadebridge/01.09.82)

Coach:  Ade Roberts

RESERVES:

Ro Bradbury (Jesus College BC/Banstead/17.12.88)
Katie Solesbury (Leander Club/Oxford/02.09.82) – racing spare W1x
Melanie Wilson (Molesey BC/London/25.06.84)

OPEN

MEN

Pair

Pete Reed (Leander Club/Nailsworth, Glos/27.07.81)/
Andrew Triggs Hodge (Molesey BC/Hebden, N.Yorks/03.03.79)

Coach:  Jurgen Grobler

Four

Alex Partridge (Leander Club/Alton, Hants/25.01.81)/
Richard Egington (Leander Club/Knutsford/26.02.79)/
Alex Gregory (Leander Club/Wormington, Glos/11.03.84)/
Matthew Langridge (Leander Club/Northwich/20.05.83)/

Coach: Mark Banks

Eight

Tom Broadway (Leander Club/Newport Pagnell/21.08.82)/
James Clarke (London RC/London/31.12.84)/
Cameron Nichol (Molesey BC/Glastonbury/26.06.87)/
James Foad (Molesey BC/Southampton/20.03.87)/
Mohamed Sbihi (Molesey BC/Surbiton/27.03.88)/
Greg Searle (Molesey BC/Marlow/20.03.72)/
Tom Ransley (York City RC/Cambridge/06.09.85)
Dan Ritchie (Herne Bay RC/Herne Bay/06.01.87)/
Phelan Hill (cox) (Leander Club/Bedford/21.07.79)

Coaches:  Christian Felkel/John West

Single scull

Alan Campbell (Tideway Scullers/Coleraine/09.05.83)

Coach: Bill Barry

Double scull

Matthew Wells (Leander Club/Hexham, Northumberland/19.04.79)
Marcus Bateman (Leander Club/Torquay/16.09.82)/

Coach: Mark Earnshaw

Quadruple scull

Charles Cousins (Reading Uni BC/Cambridge/13.12.88)/
Sam Townsend (Reading Uni BC/Reading/26.11.85)/
Bill Lucas (Reading Uni BC/Kingswear/13.09.87)/
Stephen Rowbotham (Leander Club/Winscombe, Somerset/11.11.81)

Coach: Mark Earnshaw

RESERVES

Brendan Crean (Agecroft RC/Lewes/07.02.85)
Nathaniel Reilly-O’Donnell (Uni of London BC/Durham/13.4.88)
Tom Wilkinson (Leander Club/Reading/04.07.85)/

LIGHTWEIGHT

WOMEN

Double scull

Hester Goodsell (Reading Uni BC/London/27.06.84)/
Sophie Hosking (London RC/Wimbledon/25.01.86)

Coach:  Paul Reedy

Quadruple scull

Jane Hall (Leander Club/Surbiton/20.10.73)/
Stephanie Cullen (London RC/Bury, Lancs/27.11.80)/
Laura Greenhalgh (London RC/Cuddeson,Oxon/2.9.85)/
Andrea Dennis (Reading Uni BC/Oxford/03.01.82)

Coach: Tom Gale

LIGHTWEIGHT

MEN

Pair

Adam Freeman-Pask (Imperial College BC/Windsor/19.06.85)
Chris Boddy (Leander Club/Stockton-on-Tees/16.11.87)/

Coach:  Rob Morgan

Four

Richard Chambers (Leander Club/Coleraine/10.06.85)/
Paul Mattick (Leander Club/Frome, Somerset/25.04.78)/
Rob Williams (London RC/Maidenhead/21.01.85)/
Chris Bartley (Leander Club/Chester/02.02.84)

Coach:  Rob Morgan

Single scull

Peter Chambers (Oxford Brookes Uni BC/Coleraine/14.03.90)

Coach:  Darren Whiter

Double scull

Zac Purchase (Marlow RC/Tewkesbury/02.05.86)/
Mark Hunter (Leander Club/Romford, Essex/01.07.78)

Coach:  Darren Whiter

ADAPTIVE BOATS

AS Men’s Single scull

Tom Aggar (Royal Docks RC/London/24.05.84)

Coach: Tom Dyson

AS Women’s Single scull

Helene Raynsford (Guildford RC/Farnborough/29.12.79)

Coach:  Tom Dyson

LTA Mixed Coxed four

Kelsie Gibson (Maidstone Invicta RC)
James Roe (Reading Uni BC/Stratford-upon-Avon/28.03.88)/
Ryan Chamberlain (King’s College London BC/Wandsworth, London/03.04.86)
Kate Jones (Aberdeen BC/Eskdale Green, Cumbria/28.02.86)
Rhiannon Jones (cox) (Reading Uni BC/Hereford/16.09.87)

Coach:  Mary McLachlan

MANAGEMENT AND SUPPORT STAFF

Performance:

Team Manager and Performance Director: David Tanner
Chief Coach Men:  Jurgen Grobler
Chief Coach Women & Lightweights: Paul Thompson
Assistant Team Manager/Adaptives:  Louise Kingsley

Medical and Sports Science:

Doctor: Ann Redgrave
Lead Physiotherapist: Mark Edgar
Physiotherapist:  Liz Arnold
Physiotherapist:  Sally Brown
Psychologist:  Chris Shambrook
Physiologist: Mark Homer
Nutritionist: Wendy Martinson

Media/Admin/Logistics:

Assistant Team Manager (admin): Jo Bates
Assistant Team Manager (logistics): Judi Read
Sponsorship liaison Manager:  Francesca Bullock
Resources Manager:  Maurice Hayes
Boatman:  John Tetley
Press Officer: Caroline Searle

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CONTACT DETAILS
For media enquiries about The GB Rowing Teams please contact:

During the 2010 world championships in New Zealand:

Caroline Searle

(00) 64 274977493 or press@matchtight.co.uk

NB:  New Zealand is 13 hours ahead of the UK.

Caroline Searle

T:  (01225) 443998
M:  (07831) 755351

e:  caroline@matchtight.co.uk

GB Rowing Team website www.gbrowingteam.org.uk – full biogs available
here.

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