July 12, 2013 (ISN) – One of the most competitive regattas on the international calendar, the World Cup in Lucerne, Switzerland, began today on the Rotsee course in good conditions for racing.
Canadian crews had mixed results in today’s heats and reps. “We had some good results, but even for the performances that were not up to par, the athletes are holding themselves accountable for their results, which is important when you are forming a team,” said Rowing Canada Aviron High Performance Director Peter Cookson. “It’s a learning process. As we go through the next few races (more reps, semis and finals), we’ll get better and better at handling the demands and speed of international racing.”
Both the Canadian women’s and men’s lightweight singles advanced today.
Olympian Patricia Obee won her heat in the single and moves to the semi-final. Obee and her 2012 rowing partner, Lindsay Jennerich, were seventh overall at the Olympic regatta in the lightweight double. After spending the winter at university in the U.S., Obee returned to Canada and training camp ready to again make an impact, and she proved that today winning in 7:50.62, holding off South Africa who finished in 7:50.99 (top two went to semi).
“I’ve been at the University of Washington and trained in Canada for a couple of weeks before heading to Europe, and I’m adjusting well to the single (from the larger boats at the university level),” she said today. “I made a lot of technical changes in the camp in Italy and now I just need to focus on keeping the boat speed throughout the race.”
Lightweight Nick Pratt of Kingston, Ontario, was second in his heat today, followed by a win in the rep this afternoon in 7:02.14 to advance.
“Today was about getting my race-day nerves under control. I’m quite happy with how the day went and looking forward to tomorrow and continuing on the same trend,” said Pratt, who has mainly rowed in larger boats internationally in the past. “The single is a unique experience – you live and die by your own performance.”
The men’s four finished third (6:07.76) in the heat, and moves to the semi-final. This crew is Spencer Crowley (Lantzville, BC), Steve Van Knotsenburg (Beamsville, ON), Will Dean (Kelowna, BC) and Olympic medalist Will Crothers of Kingston, ON.
Jamie Abbass (Happy Valley – Goose Bay, NFLD), Mike Braithwaite (Duncan, BC), Kevin Kowalyk (Winnipeg, MB) and Matthew Buie (Duntroon, ON) were second in the men’s quad in 5:52.36. This crew advances to the semi-finals. Estonia won the heat in 5:51.38.
The lightweight men’s four was fourth in the heat and then fifth in a rep in 6:11.79 later today. This crew of Rares Crisan (Mississauga, ON), Brendan Hodge (Delta, BC), Eric Woelfl (St. Catharines, ON), and Graham Schenck (St. Catharines) is now relegated to the C final for places 13 and on.
The women’s quad was sixth in today’s heat, and will row in the rep. This crew is Antje Von Seydlitz (Smithers, BC), Alyssa Weninger (Unity, SK), Rosie DeBoef (Victoria, BC), and Kate Goodfellow (Ottawa, ON). Canada’s time was 6:32.36. Germany won this heat in 6:23.78.
The women’s double (Emily Cameron of Summerside, PEI and Kerry Shaffer of Welland, ON) finished fourth in 7:02.57. The U.S. won this heat in 6:48.60.
The men’s double was sixth in today’s heat, and must row in a rep tomorrow. The double is Mike Harowicz (Oakville, ON) and Josh Morris (Victoria, BC).
The women’s four rowed a preliminary race, as this is a straight final, and won in 6:40.31. This crew is Sarah Black of Ottawa, Christine Roper of Victoria, Natalie Mastracci of Thorold, ON, and Cristy Nurse of Georgetown, ON.
“We had a plan to approach it as if it was more than a race for lanes. Now we have a comfort level out on the lake, so it was a good start,” said Nurse, who is also rowing in the women’s eight tomorrow. “Tomorrow, in the four final, we expect the other crews will have more to show – I’m looking forward to it.”
Full results and live race tracker: http://www.worldrowing.com