Australia will look to qualify four additional Olympic boat classes for Tokyo
Bellis and Ross return to the PR2 Mixed Double in a bid to qualify for Tokyo 2020 Paralympics
Rowing Australia today announced the squads and crews set to compete at the 2020 World Rowing Cups 2 and 3 as well as the Final Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regattas later this year.
Rowing Australia Performance Director, Bernard Savage, said, “Today we are pleased to be able announce some of our squads and crews for the upcoming international events in the lead up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“We have certainly identified athletes for each boat class that Australia has qualified or hopes to qualify for Tokyo, however we wish to refine our performances in the lead up to these World Rowing events before announcing these crews publically.”
World Rowing Cup 2 is due to be held in Varese, Italy from 1 to 3 May, while the 2020 International Para-Rowing Regatta and the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta are both due to be held in Gavirate, Italy from 8 to 10 May. Lucerne in Switzerland is the venue for both the Final Olympic Qualification Regatta, scheduled for 17 to 19 May, and World Rowing Cup 3 which is due to take place from 22 to 24 May.
“Currently we are training and planning for our athletes to be competing at the World Rowing Cups and Final Qualification Regattas. However, we are of course monitoring the situation both in Europe and closer to home in relation to the Novel Coronavirus. We are in regular contact with FISA (the governing body for World Rowing), the AIS and the Australian Government as to whether these events are able to take place or if we are able to travel to them based on the current situation surrounding travel and the Novel Coronavirus.
“The health and wellbeing of our athletes is paramount, and we will continue to support our athletes as they train, with the hope that we will be able to compete, in May, overseas in Italy and Switzerland.”
Australia has already qualified eight boats for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and will now also look to qualify both the Lightweight Men’s and Women’s Double Sculls at the Final Olympic Qualification Regatta to be held in Lucerne, Switzerland. Sean Murphy and Hamish Parry will team up in the Lightweight Men’s Double Scull, while Georgia Nesbitt and Sarah Pound will race the female equivalent.
Rowing Australia will also select, from the male and female sculling squads, a Men’s Double Scull and Women’s Quadruple Scull to contest the Final Olympic Qualification Regatta.
Today’s announcement of squads and crews also sees Kathryn Ross and Gavin Bellis reunite for the first time since Rio 2016. Three-time World Champion, Bellis, has come out of retirement to reunite with his former PR2 Mixed Double Sculls partner in a bid to qualify their boat for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. The duo will race at World Rowing Cup 2, before competing at the 2020 International Para-Rowing Regatta and the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta.
In addition to Bellis and Ross selection, Erik Horrie has been selected to also compete at World Rowing Cup 2 and the 2020 International Para-Rowing Regatta in the PR1 Men’s Single Scull, while the PR3 Mixed Coxed Four, which will be selected at the start of April, will also compete at these two events. Both the PR1 Men’s Single Scull and the PR3 Mixed Coxed Four are qualified boat classes for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
The squads and crews for the World Rowing Cups and Final Qualification Regattas can be viewed by clicking here.