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Aussies overcome tough conditions in U19 World Champs in Paris

Katie Jackson and Lucy Richardson move through the water in style in the Women’s Pair. Photo: Vera Buscu / Rowing Australia.

Australian crews have overcome challenging conditions in Paris to produce a series of rock-solid rows on day one of the World Rowing Under 19 Championships at Vaires-sur-Marne, the very same course that will play host to the Olympic and Paralympic Regatta in 2024.

Day one racing had been postponed due to adverse weather conditions, providing a challenge for all the young rowers as they were forced to wait to get out on the water. Once they did, persistent wind and rain continued to be an issue but the Green and Gold contingent stuck to their guns admirably once racing began.

The Women’s Pair of Katie Jackson and Lucy Richardson powered to victory in the second heat of their boat class to finish in 7:29.97, well clear of the second-placed German boat. Romania set the pace through the preliminary stages (7:24.17) and loom as the crew to chase in the latter rounds.

There was equally good news for the Men’s Double Scull of Jack Power and Chad Willett, who took out the opening heat (6:32.80) to book a lane in the semifinals. This is a hugely competitive boat class, with a cluster of crews producing strong rows in the early rounds, meaning the Australian duo will have to be on their game to advance to the A Final.

The Women’s Coxless Four (Georgia Montague, Greta Spencer, Lyla Fievez, Minaya Bishop) were second in their heat behind Great Britain to go through to the repechage, while Eliza Bridgefoot and Liesel Page crewed the Women’s Double Scull into third in the final of four heats to progress to a repechage.

Oscar St Pierre, Tane Potts, Doogal McKenzie, Joseph Lynch and coxswain Ryder Taylor piloted the Men’s Coxed Four to a repechage after finishing third in their heat and the Women’s Coxed Four of Chloe Driver, Charlotte Botha, Alexandra O’Brien, Imogen Grey and coxswain Chloe Jureta were just one of three crews racing for lanes, finishing third in the prelim ahead of the final.

Due to forecast adverse weather conditions for the final day of the regatta on Sunday, August 6, World Rowing have decided to cancel all racing on Sunday, condensing the scheduled program of racing on Friday and Saturday. An updated program for the Championships is available HERE.

Keep an eye on the Rowing Australia website and social media channels for updates of the World Rowing U19 Championships and head to World Rowing for full results, schedules and live tracking of the racing in France.