Brits get bronze on the beach at World Rowing Coastal Championships
Charles Cousins wins bronze in Men’s Solo and in Mixed Double with Clare Jamison
Conditions range from calm to fun throughout the well-run World Rowing Coastal Championships in Barletta, Italy from 6-8 October, which followed on from the previous weekend’s World Rowing Beach Sprint Finals there. This year the format had a beach finish after the 4km or 6km races, which began with the usual mass beach start.
28 British athletes took part in 20 boats, of which nine qualified for their 18-boat A Finals.
Charles Cousins (Mumbles ARC) established himself as one of the scullers to watch in the Men’s solo, having won his heat by over 15 seconds. As the final developed, he was in the leading pack of three – along with the Irish and the American – who broke away from the rest of the field, while challenging each other for medal positions. In the end, the Irish sculler Adrian Miramon Quiroga – who had won the Men’s Solo at the World Rowing Beach Sprint Finals last week representing Spain – hit the buzzer first, with the American second and Cousins a strong third.
Gregor Hall (University of St Andrews BC), who finished second in his heat, came 13th in the A final, and Jerry Owen (Fishguard and Goodwick Jemima RC) was 18th.
The well-established Mixed double partnership of Cousins and Clare Jamieson (Mumbles ARC), who won silver in the event at the World Rowing beach Sprint Finals in 2022, looked comfortable winning their heat by over 10 seconds. Conditions had picked up to ‘quite exciting’ level for their Sunday final, which was just an hour and a half after Cousins’ Solo final, particularly further out on the course. The British crew held second place behind Ireland through the third marker, but by then France were already closing in on them. In the last part of the race, the French got past, but Cousins and Jamison continued to hold off challenges by pursuing crews from Spain and the USA to secure the bronze medal.
Charles Cousins said: “It’s been a magical week in Barletta, rowing every day in the sun, eating pizza and gelato every night and making friends with rowers from all over the world. After missing out on medals last weekend at the World Rowing Beach Sprint Finals, we were keen to see if we could finish the 2023 season on a high. We had two practice rows before our first race, but from the first stroke it just clicked and I knew we were going to be quick in the doubles. It was tough racing so close together and I certainly ran out of steam at the end, but Clare was able to pick up the slack and power us home to bronze.”
Jamieson had finished seventh in the A Final of the Women’s solo earlier in the day. Bryony Jones of Llanion Warriors was 18th.
In other events, Francesca Rawlins and Sara Parfett (Runcorn RC) finished seventh in the Women’s doubles, Gregor Hall and Jerry Owen were ninth in the Men’s doubles, and the Jersey RC crew of Emma Syvret, Sarah Earles, Abigail Syvret and Constance Huelin, coxed by Susan Huelin came 19th in the Women’s quads.
Photos: James Lee.