Thursday, 8 August 2013

Welsh Rowers Korea-bound for World Championships

Welsh Rowers Chris Bartley and Vicky Thornley have both been selected as part of the GB Rowing Team for the World Championships in Chungju, Korea later this month.

The eight-day regatta takes place from 25 August to 1 September.

Bartley is picked once again to race in the lightweight men’s four alongside Adam Freeman-Pask, William Fletcher and Jonathan Clegg.

Since winning Olympic silver at London 2012, the 29-year-old has twice returned to the podium during this year’s series of world cup regattas.

He followed up a silver medal won in Sydney at the start of the season with a bronze on his return to Eton Dorney lake in June.

Meanwhile, Wrexham’s Vicky Thornley has been selected for the women’s single scull having made great progress in the event this year – the highlight being a fourth place finish at Eton Dorney.

Elsewhere, Andrew Triggs Hodge, Peter Reed and Alex Gregory, the three returning 2012 gold medallists from the men’s four, will race in the men’s eight.

Predictably after their hat-trick of 2013 World Cup gold medals Olympic Champion Helen Glover and Polly Swann are named in the women’s pair slot.

Brothers Peter and Richard Chambers race the lightweight men’s double scull once more and Olympic bronze medallist Alan Campbell, from the Coleraine-connected trio in the GB squad, is the selected men’s open weight single sculler.

Agecroft RC’s Graeme Thomas, who turned from rugby to rowing and joined the GB Rowing Team Start programme just a few short years ago, is fit once more and rejoins the men’s quadruple scull with Charles Cousins, Sam Townsend and Peter Lambert.

The quartet, minus Thomas but with sculling reserve Jonathan Walton on board, came close to a medal in Lucerne as did Frances Houghton and Vicky Meyer-Laker who are named today in the women’s double scull after winning medals in two of the 2013 world cups.

There are no changes in the men’s double, four and lightweight men’s single, nor in the lightweight women’s single or double.  

Mark Aldred and Sam Scrimegour, gold winners in Eton Dorney and Lucerne have been named in the lightweight men’s pair ahead of the GB U23 world champion duo.

GB will field the same women’s eight that came fourth in the record-breaking final in Lucerne, during which the USA set a new world-best time. Beth Rodford, Louisa Reeve, Jess Eddie and Katie Greves are the experienced Olympians in the line-up.

Since a somewhat disappointing final world cup in Lucerne – at which the team won two golds and a bronze – all of the senior squad have been away at their traditional, annual altitude camps before returning to finish off their preparations this week at the GB Rowing Team lottery-funded national training centre near Reading.

“Lucerne was useful in that it gave us a baseline from which to move forward”, said GB Rowing Team Performance Director, Sir David Tanner.  “This year has all been about giving new, young rowers their chance at the top alongside our more experienced names. So we should not expect big fireworks in Korea but this team still has the talent to sparkle”.

GB has also named its para-rowing squad for Chungju today.  Tom Aggar has been named in the arms-shoulders men’s single scull and the leg-trunks-arms mixed coxed four will be Pamela Relph, Naomi Riches, James Fox, Oliver Hester and cox Oliver James.

Both GB crews won world cup gold at Eton Dorney in June but know that the field will strengthen for the World Championships.  Relph, Riches and Aggar are the only returning 2012 Paralympians.  

Relph’s selection today means a second set of siblings in the squad for Korea. Her sister Monica races in the women’s quad in Chungju – a first time selection for both at a senior World Championships.

The team leaves for Korea next week.


Post a Comment