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2022 World Rowing Cup 1 – Ross Second in Duel with GB Rival

Australia’s Kathryn Ross finished second in the Final of the PR2 Women’s Single Sculls, pushing her rival Lauren Rowles of Great Britain all the way in what was the first medal event contested at World Rowing Cup 1 in Belgrade (SRB).

Two powerhouses of the PR2 Para-Rowing Grade – Ross is the reigning World Champion in this boat class and Rowles is a reigning World and Paralympic Champion in the PR2 Mixed Double Sculls – went head-to head for the third time in three weeks, with Rowles taking the win in Saturday’s Final by a margin of 3.59 seconds.

Clear blue skies that greeted competitors on Friday were replaced by grey clouds and rain making racing conditions challenging for the crews.

Rowles took control of the race from the beginning, but the four-time Paralympian Ross was never far behind her. Rowles had established a four second lead at the 1000 metre mark, but the ever-experienced Ross continued to apply pressure in the final stages of the race and was able to gain ground in the final 500 metres.

The two athletes enjoy a fierce but friendly rivalry and Ross was complimentary of her Team GB counterpart post-race.

“I went out and tried to stick with her as best as I could, she’s the queen on the water,” Ross said.

“She’s absolutely a phenomenal athlete and to be able and try and stick with her, I’m pretty happy with that result,” she said.

The four-time World Champion admitted mistakes proved costly and said there was plenty to take away from the race.

“I’d probably work on my technique. I had a couple of mistakes out there which I tried to pull back from as best I could, but every little bit counts.

“I’d work on my consistency a bit better and work on my strength to get a bit closer,” she said.

Earlier on Saturday, Nicholas Neales and Thomas Birtwhistle went up against a Bulgarian duo in the first race of the day, the D Final of the Men’s Pair.  Crews faced heavy rain as they made their way down the course. The Bulgarians were fast out of the start, but the Aussies raced competitively in the heavy conditions to finish in a time of 07:11.32.

Shortly thereafter racing was delayed for approximately one hour which pushed back the start time of the day’s remaining races, including the repechages in the Women’s Pair featuring Australia’s Alex Vuillermin and Al Viney. Starting in lane four of repechage two, the duo came up against a competitive field including two Dutch crews and a crew from the Czech Republic. They ultimately finished the race in fourth place but will get another opportunity to race on Sunday in the B Final.

All of Australia’s Para-Rowers will have another chance to take to the course on Sunday when the final day of racing resumes at 9:30am local time (5:30pm AEST) with the B Final of the Women’s Pair featuring Aussie duo Viney and Vuillermin.


Day One Wrap Event Preview



NOTE: AUS Time is reflected as AEST which is eight hours ahead of Belgrade. 

Local Time AUS Time Boat Class
0930 1730 W2- B Final
1035 1835 PR1 M1x
1050 1850 PR2 Mix2x
1238 2038 PR3 Mixed4+


Here’s your guide to supporting the Australian athletes competing at World Rowing Cup 1, Friday 27 May – Sunday 29 May 2022 at Belgrade, Serbia.

Visit the World Rowing Website to view the schedule, link to the live stream, entries and results.

You can also support the team by following Rowing Australia on Facebook and Instagram. 


PR1 M1x Erik Horrie OAM

Coach: Jason Baker OAM

PR2 W1x Kathryn Ross

Coach: Renae Domaschenz

PR2 Mix2x Simon Albury (b)

Kathryn Ross (s)

Coach: Renae Domaschenz

PR3 Mix4+ Alexandra Viney (b)

Jessica Gallagher (2)

Nicholas Neales (3)

Thomas Birtwhistle (s)

Alex Wenyon GBR (c)

Coach: Gordon Marcks

W2- Alexandra Viney (b)

Alex Vuillermin (s)

M2- Nicholas Neales (b)

Thomas Birtwhistle (s)