World Rowing this week (14 October) announced the finalists for the 2019 World Rowing Awards. Following public nomination, the FISA Executive Committee selected the finalists based on the analysis of the expert panels created for each of the awards.
Excitingly, there are a number of Australians who have been shortlisted for awards – with the gala dinner due to be held in London on 22 November as part of the World Rowing Coaches’ Conference.
Olympic gold medalist Kim Brennan has been shortlisted for the prestigious Thomas Keller Medal. Awarded to the rower who has had a long and successful rowing career and who has made an outstanding contribution to rowing as a competitor and sports personality. Brennan is shortlisted alongside Ekaterina Karsten of Belarus and British rowers James Cracknell, Pete Reed and Andrew Triggs-Hodge.
2019 U23 World Champion, Ria Thompson (UQBC/VIC) has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Filippi Spirit Award. The award is for a university rower who has demonstrated the core values of rowing in his/her social, academic and sporting life and, through these values, also enabled or inspired exceptional success in other people’s lives. Thompson has been shortlisted alongside Jean Maillard (France), Ronan Byrne (Ireland) and Nicholas Perovich (USA).
Australia’s 2019 World Rowing Champions, the Women’s Four of Olympia Aldersey (Adelaide RC/SA), Katrina Werry (Mercantile RC/VIC), Sarah Hawe (Huon RC/VIC) and Lucy Stephan (MUBC/VIC) have been named as finalists in the World Rowing Women’s Crew of the Year category. The Australians have been shortlisted alongside China’s Women’s Quadruple Scull, New Zealand’s Lightweight Women’s Double Scull and Women’s Pair as well as Ireland’s single sculler, Sanita Purspure.
Kathryn Ross (ANU BC/ACT), Australia’s World Champion in the PR2 Women’s Single Scull, has been named as a finalist in the 2019 Para-Rowing Crew of the Year. The Australian was named alongside the British PR3 Mixed Coxed Four, the British PR2 Mixed Double Scull, as well as PR1 single scullers Birgit Skarstein of Norway and Roman Polianskyi of Ukraine.
Finally, the Spring Creek Regeneration Project, in Orange, New South Wales, has been shortlisted for the World Rowing Sustainability Award. Awarded to an organisation that has implemented an innovative project or initiative delivering a clear and positive sustainability impact – the Spring Creek Regeneration Project is joined on the shortlist by the 2018 World Rowing Coastal Championships (Canada), Wintech: Clean air, water and solar power (China), Rowers Against Rubbish (Great Britain) and Developing Environmental Ambassadors (Japan).