Six crews set to race at World Rowing Junior Championships; Live tracker and commentary available on www.worldrowing.com

The Junior Australian Rowing Team is ready to take on the rest of the world at the 2018 World Rowing Junior Championships beginning today. The six crews will compete at the event held in Račice, Czech Republic from 8 to 12 August.

More than 750 athletes from 57 countries will race at the regatta, with Australia represented in the Junior Men’s and Women’s Single Sculls, the Junior Men’s and Women’s Coxed Fours, Junior Women’s Four and Junior Men’s Pair.

Reigning Junior Men’s Double Scull World Champion, Cormac Kennedy-Leverett, has made the move into the Junior Men’s Single Scull this season. The current National champion in the boat class will be competing in the boat class with the biggest entry of the event, with 38 countries entered in a bid to be crowned World Champion.

The Junior Women’s Single Scull, where fellow Queenslander, Taylor McCarthy-Smith will be racing, has 29 entries with the reigning National champion also aiming for gold in the Czech Republic. McCarthy-Smith and Kennedy-Leverett will race both at the World Rowing Junior Championships on the opening day and then, in October, will join the Australian Youth Olympic Team to race at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Unfortunately, due to injuries Nicela Martincec (Junior Women’s Double Scull) and Rachel Balcolmb (Junior Women’s Coxed Four) are unable to compete at the World Championships. In line with this, Laura Chancellor of Toowong Rowing Club has moved from the Junior Women’s Double Scull into the Junior Women’s Coxed Four.

Rowing Australia Deputy Performance Director, Jaime Fernandez, said, “The crews were lucky enough to prepare at the Hancock Prospecting Women’s NTC in Penrith and also at the AIS European Training Centre in Italy ahead of the World Rowing Junior Championships in Račice.

“It’s fantastic to see such competition at a junior level in our sport and I’m sure we’re going to see some highly competitive racing this week. It is obviously disappointing for both Rachel and Nicela to not be able to compete, but credit must go to Laura and the Junior Women’s Coxed Four for adapting to the changes that have come their way.”

With the single scullers in action on the opening day, Australia’s big boats, along with the Men’s Pair, will hit the water on Thursday in the Czech Republic.

The Junior Women’s Coxed Four of Lauren Graham, Ella Mentzines, Laura Chancellor, Isabelle Furrer and coxswain Hannah Cowap will be the first to race on Thursday. They take on USA, Italy and hometown favourites, the Czech Republic, in their heat and will need a first place finish to avoid the repechage.

Following the women will be the Junior Men’s Coxed Four will take on the Czech Republic, Germany and Spain. The crew of Ben Gerrard, Logan Ullrich, Miller Rowe, Hamish Henriques and coxswain Isaac Schmidt need a top three finish to progress to the semi-finals and avoid the repechage.

Victorian duo of Hamish Wynn-Pope and Jack Thornton are in action in the Men’s Pair on Thursday with the duo drawn in Lane 6 and taking on Peru, Hungary, Netherlands, Belarus and Serbia in their heat. The crew need a top place finish to progress straight to the semi-finals, otherwise they will have to contest the repechage.

The Junior Women’s Four will round of Australia’s heats on Thursday. The crew of Phoebe Robinson, Hilary Ballinger, Jessica Scott and Leukie Smith are drawn in Lane 4 and will take on Great Britain, Switzerland, Italy and the Ukraine. The Australians will need a top three finish to make it into Friday’s semi-finals.

Rowing Australia will be posting daily wrap-ups of racing to its website (www.rowingaustralia.com.au) and its social media channels, with the results from Sunday’s finals to be sent out to the media.

Race times for Junior Australian Rowing Team at the 2018 World Rowing Junior Championships

Wednesday 8 August
Junior Men’s Single Scull (Kennedy-Leverett) – Heat 2, 00:06 AEST (16:06 local time)
Junior Women’s Single Scull (McCarthy-Smith) – Heat 2, 00:54 AEST (16:54 local time)

Thursday 9 August (currently confirmed)
Junior Women’s Coxed Four (Graham, Mentzines, Chancellor, Furrer and Cowap) – Heat 1, 17:30 AEST (09:30 local time)
Junior Men’s Coxed Four (Gerrard, Ullrich, Rowe, Henriques and Schmidt) – Heat 3, 17:54 AEST (09:54 local time)
Junior Men’s Pair (Wynn-Pope and Thornton) – Heat 4, 18:36 AEST (10:36 local time)
Junior Women’s Four (Robinson, Ballinger, Scott and Smith) – Heat 2, 18:48 AEST (10:48 local time)