A gusty cross, head wind in hot 30 degree Celsius was the formula for the heats with these under-19 rowers giving it their all to qualify for the next round of racing. The heat meant that at the finish line with some rowers suffered from heat exhaustion. But as the afternoon went into evening, temperatures cooled a little.

Junior Women’s Four (JW4-) – Heats

New Zealand’s Holly Greenslade (b), Alice Darry, Eloise Dowse and Emma Dyke (s) race in the junior women’s four heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

It was important to come first as only the top boat from each of the two heats would get a direct path to the finals on Saturday. In Heat One last year’s bronze medalists, New Zealand got out quickly and despite remaining in the lead they had the lower stroke rate. In stroke seat, Holly Greenslade is the only one to remain from the 2012 crew. Just after the half-way point New Zealand did a push and managed to move away from Australia in second. Coming into the final sprint New Zealand had a three length lead and were able to safely take the qualifying spot. The rest of the field crossed the line packed together – less than three seconds separating all of them. 

Heat Two opened with the United States in the lead. The US finished second in this event last year and has pulled together a new line-up for this year. Three of this year’s crew members raced last year in the women’s eight where they took silver. Then Germany snuck in front. The Americans fought back. It was not enough. Germany managed to under-rate the US and just keep the leading edge to qualify for the final.
Qualifiers: NZL, GER

Junior Men’s Coxed Four (JM4+) – Heats
The two heats that lined up in this event saw crews aiming for a first place finish if they wanted a direct path to the final on Saturday. Last year’s silver medalists, Germany were in the lead at the start of Heat One and settling into a 34 stroke rate they managed to stay ahead of the field and ahead of the reigning World Champions, New Zealand. Germany’s 16-year-old coxswain, Philipp Baumgard took his crew into a sprint just before the 1500m mark and they held the lead to the line.

Magdalena Lobnig (b) and Lisa Farthofer (s) of Austria after having finished fourth in the women’s double sculls repechage at the 2011 European Rowing Championships in Plovdiv (BUL) on Saturday, September 17.

After an initial lead by France, Italy took over in front of Heat Two. But the Italians didn’t just want to lead, they wanted to dominate. Italy, who finished fifth in 2012 with two rowers remaining in the boat – Mancini and Gerosa – kept their stroke rate high and crossed the line way out in front of France in second. Italy will join Germany in the final and it’s interesting to note that both of these crews recorded almost identical finishing times.
Qualifiers: GER, ITA

Junior Women’s Pair (JW2-) – Heats
A strong turnout in the women’s pair meant three heats lined up with the top three boats in each heat getting to go directly to the semifinals on Friday. Heat One saw last year’s World Champions, Italy racing. But Italy has a new line up this year and came out in third with Great Britain in the lead. Italy’s Elisa Mapelli and Federica Cesarini followed the Italian racing trend of out-rating their competition and closed on the British. Then Romania, who were rating a comfortable 30 strokes per minute with a long, strong style, got their nose in front of the British. Then Italy managed to overtake Great Britain coming into the closing sprint. But it was academic as the top three boats would all qualify. Romania finished easily in first to qualifying along with Italy and Great Britain.

Spain’s Mireia Ros I Martinez and Laura Monteso Esmel had the fastest start in Heat Two with last year’s bronze medalists, Greece chasing hard. Spain then managed to

Mireia Ros I Martinez (b) and Laura Monteso Esmel (s) of Spain race in the junior women’s pair heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

break away. The Spanish were fifth in 2012 when Monteso was in the boat. By the second half of the race the crews looked all but sorted and there was not much sprinting going on in the last 500m. Spain qualified from an easy first, Belarus overtook Greece to take second with Greece earning the third and final qualifying spot.

Heat Three featured last year’s bronze medalists, the United States still intact. But Australia’s Jessie Allen and Genevieve Horton, who warmed up for this event by finishing fourth at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships a week ago and their racing experience showed. Coming into the final sprint Australia had a huge lead despite their relative low stroke rate. Allen and Horton had recorded the fastest qualifying time of the three heats. The United States and Germany followed in second and third respectively.

Junior Men’s Four (JM4-) – Heats
The three heats in this event required crews to be in a top two position for a direct route to the semifinals. Heat One had Ukraine setting the pace at the start and they remained in front at the half way point. But Ukraine couldn’t maintain their pace and faded giving Poland the lead with Austria chasing hard. Poland were third at this year’s European Junior Championships and they are looking to wrap up a positive season. At the line Poland had easily won with Austria a few lengths back in the second qualifying spot.

All eyes were on the reigning World Champions, Italy in Heat Two. But at the start the Czech Republic led the way. The Czechs then appeared to completely burn out with

2009 World Rowing Coastal Championships for Clubs (Plymouth, GBR)

Romania and Italy moving away at the head of the field. Romania finished second last year and they were keeping their nose ahead and their stroke rate up with the Italians. Despite two qualifying spots, Italy continued to challenge Romania to move completely away from the rest of the field. Pride or revenge for 2012? Both Italy and Romania sprinted through to the finish, but then Italy’s course went a little skewed and Romania were able to finish first. Romania and Italy had qualified for the semifinals with Romania recording the fastest qualifying time overall.

The United States and Germany came storming out in Heat Three with the US managing to get their nose just in front. Then the German’s, who were third last year, started to waver with Spain taking over in the second-place spot. Using a high stroke rate and looking smooth in these slightly tricky conditions, Spain remained with the United States right to the finish line. Germany did not have enough to push into a qualifying spot. Spain managed to pip the Americans at the line. Both boats had qualified for the semifinals.
Qualifiers: POL, AUT, ROU, ITA, ESP, USA

Junior Women’s Quadruple Sculls (JW4x) – Heats
The four heats in the junior women’s quadruple sculls required crews to be in first or second position for a direct path to the semifinals on Friday. The first heat had last year’s World Champions, Romania in the lead at the start. But margins remained tight amongst the four leading crews through the first half of the race. Romania had already won the European Junior Championships earlier this season and they remained in the lead through the middle of the race. But then Germany did a huge push and got out in front. Would Romania react? Yes, Romania held on tightly to the Germans but remained in second. These two crews had qualified for the semifinals. At the line Germany had easily recorded the fastest qualifying time of the four heats.

South Africa’s Siobhan Van Rooyen (b), Ciara Nutter, Kimberleigh Warriner and Nicole Van Wyk (s) race in the junior women’s quadruple sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

Heat Two had a short delay at the start due to India being late to the start. They were so late that they were not able to start. So with the remaining four crews away and racing, South Africa had the early lead. The Czech Republic, who took bronze at this year’s European Junior Championships in Minsk, then got into the lead with South Africa holding on to them tightly. These two leaders proceeded to move away from the rest of the field. The Czech’s looked comfortable with long, strong strokes and they continued to remain ahead of the South Africans. But then, despite their lower stroke rate, South Africa took the lead and crossed the line in first. South Africa and the Czech Republic had qualified directly for the semifinals.

The United States took Heat Three by storm. They got out in front at the start and did their best to hold off Poland in second. The United States were second in this event last year and Elizabeth Sharis has remained in this crew. As the race progressed the United States were able to shake off the Poles to easily win. Poland in second had also qualified for the semifinals.

In the fourth and final heat Italy took off with a slight lead over New Zealand. The Italians come to these junior championships after finishing second at the European Junior Championships earlier in the season. But they could not shake off New Zealand and a bit of a waver in their steering did not help. However, once the Italians got into the calmer waters near to the finish line, Italy managed to push away from New Zealand. New Zealand took bronze last year and stroke Zoe McBride has remained in the boat. Ending this virtual two boat race, Italy and New Zealand were the two qualifying boats.
Qualifiers: GER, ROU, RSA, CZE, USA, POL, ITA, NZL

Junior Men’s Pair (JM2-) – Heats
Having five heats line up in the men’s pair meant that this boat class would need to progress through quarterfinals. Today was all about finishing in the top four to make it into Friday’s quarterfinal round. Heat One was all about Germany. Malte Grossmann and Micheal Trebbow got out quickly at the start and by the middle of the race they were in absolute command with an open water lead. The rest of the field seemed resigned to the fact that first was not to be and instead they sorted out the remaining qualifying spots with no real challenges going on. Germany, Slovenia, Hungary and Australia had qualified.

Bernard Samardzic (b) and Danijel Plisic (s) of Croatia race in the junior men’s pair heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

Heat Two had the United States as the dominating crew at the start. Justin Murphy and Nathaniel Goodman of the United States finished 12th last year and with a whole year now behind them they have showed huge improvements. But it was not all plain sailing for the Americans. Croatia was pushing hard and aggressively passed the United States in the final sprint. The United States did not look concerned. The big fight, however, was for the fourth position between France and China. Both crews were having steering problems as they charged for the finish line. France only just got there first. Croatia, the United States, Italy and France had qualified.

Greece finished second last year and with a new crew for 2013 (Georgios Papasakelarios and Michail Kouskouridas) they were leading Heat Three over Denmark, with Turkey very much holding onto the pace of the leaders. This order remained through the middle of the race as Moldova slotted into the fourth and final qualifying spot. Greece, Denmark, Turkey and Moldova move on to the quarterfinals.

Winners of the European Junior Championships in May, Austria led the way in Heat Four. Christoph Seifriedberger and Ferdinand Querfeld of Austria remained just ahead of Serbia going through the middle of the race with the Czech Republic sticking to the pace of the leaders. Coming into the final sprint Austria was still in control of the lead but not so much in control of their steering. It didn’t matter. At the line Austria were first to qualify for the quarterfinals with the Czech Republic, Serbia and Ukraine also qualifying. Austria’s time of 7:21.41 turned out to be the fastest qualifying time of all five heats, but only just over Germany who recorded 7:21.44 in Heat One.

Heat Five saw India have a great start and at the 500m mark they had the lead. But then Great Britain’s new crew of Ben Maxwell and Alastair Douglass took over in front. India’s Shiv Singh and Jaydeep Shingate held on firmly to second. Sweden, who were 18th in this event last year, followed in third with Belarus in fourth. The order remained the same to the line with India holding on to second despite catching a crab in the closing sprint of the race. Great Britain, India, Sweden and Belarus were the qualifying boats.

Junior Women’s Double Sculls (JW2x) – Heats
A field of 24 nations lined up in this event. They were split into four heats with the winning boat in each heat getting to go directly to Saturday’s semifinals. Australia took the lead in Heat One and managed to pull completely away from the rest of the field. Stroke, Eleni Kalimnios raced in the quad at last year’s junior championships and her experience was paying off with partner Narelle Badenoch at her first international race. Belarus, who were second at the 2013 European Junior Championships, followed in second but will have to return for the repechage. Australia had finished first by a huge eight seconds.

Heat Two featured Lithuania’s Roberta Navickaite and Sonata Petrikaite in the lead. Lithuania won this event last year with Navickaite and Petrikaite being a new duo for 2013. At the half-way point Navickaite and Petrikaite remained in the lead. But their lead wasn’t great with France and Slovenia very much on the pace. The Lithuanian’s, however, were using a high rating aggressiveness to remain in front. Navickaite and Petrikaite had earned a direct path to the semifinals on Saturday.

Roberta Navickaite (b) and Sonata Petrikaite (s) of Lithuania race in the junior women’s double sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

Romania were the clear leaders in Heat Three which turned into a rather spread out race. This new Romanian crew of Nicoleta Pascanu and Elena Logofatu are both 16 years old so have two more years left as juniors and this is an impressive start for them. At the line their margin of nearly four seconds must have given the Romanian’s a huge confidence boost as they move directly to the semifinals.

Germany seemed to be in control in the first half of Heat Four. But Greece and Ireland were challenging hard turning this race into a huge battle for first place. With 600m left to row Ireland got out in front. Then Greece, raising their stroke rate to the high 30s, sprinted to the line. Ireland reacted back, taking up their stroke rate. In the flurry to the line, however, Ireland caught a boat-stopping crab and Greece totally took advantage of the situation to finish first. Mark this one down as one of the best races of the afternoon.
Qualifiers: AUS, LTU, ROU, GRE


Junior Men’s Double Sculls (JM2x) – Heats
Five heats in this event meant that the top four from each heat would get to go directly to the quarterfinals on Friday. All other boats would get a second chance through Thursday’s repechage.

Heat One saw Romania in the lead over Australia. With four boats qualifying the pressure did not seem to be great. Romania’s Marian-Florian Enache and Gheorghe-Robert Dedu remained in the lead with no real challenges coming at them. At the line Romania, Australia, Uzbekistan and Bulgaria had qualified for the quarterfinals.

With five boats in Heat Two it meant the goal was not to finish last. Poland’s Marcin Pawlowski and Dominik Czaja were making the best race of it at the head of the field. They raced smoothly and in control with Great Britain following in second. But neither crew seemed too concerned about pushing it. At the line Poland, Great Britain, the Czech Republic and Mexico had all qualified for the quarterfinals.

Turkey’s Emre Haymana (b) and Yasin Goler (s) race in the junior men’s double sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

Heat Three had Turkey and Hungary out in front with Russia following. This left a real battle for the final qualifying spot to be panning out between Croatia and Korea. Turkey were fifth at the European Junior Championships and they were making a good job of this race. Hungary and Russia were safely in second and third with Croatia and Korea having to battle it out to the line. Croatia then had slight steering problems near to the line with Korea managing to get that coveted fourth spot.

The fourth heat had the interest of the home crowd as Lithuania were racing. Germany has owned this event since 2009 and Philipp Syring and Tom Ole Naske of Germany must have known the legacy behind them. Syring and Naske took the lead and then proceeded to move away from the rest of the field. Behind them it was pretty tight for second, third and fourth between Italy, France and Lithuania. Cheered on by the crowd, Lithuania sprinted for the line. It would not get them into first but it was looking good for second. At the line Germany took first easily to qualify for the quarterfinals. A really close finish had France second and Italy and Lithuania taking the remaining two qualifying spots.

The fifth and final heat looked like Ireland would be the one that would miss out on qualifying. But the Irish were holding on through the middle of the race to China who were in fourth. Ireland then found a second wind and overtook China and the United States. Meanwhile Denmark and Belarus were in first and second. Denmark’s Peter Holmquist and Alexander Modest raced in the junior quad last year and finished 22nd. The double looked to be suiting them as they led right through to the finish. Ireland, in a brilliantly timed race, took second and the United States and Belarus also qualified for the quarterfinals.

Junior Men’s Quadruple Sculls (JM4x) – Heats
The 24 nations lining up in this event were split into four heats. The goal was to finish first in each heat for a direct path to the semifinals on Saturday. It was all on in Heat One. Romania, who took third in 2012, started out well. Australia then did a huge push to catch the Romanian’s with Croatia also challenging hard. In the final sprint it looked like Romania were fading. At the line Australia were the clear winners over Croatia with Romania slipping to third. Australia had earned a spot in the semifinals.

Italy are the reigning World Champions and they lined up in Heat Two with one returning member in the boat – Andrea Crippa. This line up finished second in May at the European Junior Championships. At the start Italy came out strongly, but it was the Czech Republic who got their nose in front. The Czech Republic and Italy then held a two-boat battle at the head of the field. With 500m left to row it was still tight with Italy now looking to have steering problems. At the line the Czech Republic had prevailed beating the Italians by three seconds.

Jack O’Leary (b), Martyn Davenport, Benjamin Crosbie and Mitchell Mackenzie (s) of New Zealand race in the junior men’s quadruple sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

Heat Three saw New Zealand lead through the first 500m mark. New Zealand were sixth in 2012 and their all black uniform stood out at the front of the field. Just one member of the 2012 crew remained – Mitchell MacKenzie-Mol was in the stroke seat. In the lane beside them, Slovenia were chasing hard. In a field dominated by Eastern European countries, New Zealand remained in the lead and in charge. Slovenia had to resign themselves to second as New Zealand were the sole qualifying crew for Saturday’s semifinals.

Heat Four saw last year’s silver medalists, Ukraine start off at the back of the field. In the lead were the United States with Germany following in second. But second would not qualify so Germany would have to find another gear if they wanted to go directly to the semifinals. The United States continued to lead with determined, aggressive sculling right through to the finish line. Germany did a big push for the line but they couldn’t catch the United States finishing in second by just 0.41 of a second.
Qualifiers: AUS, CZE, NZL, USA

Junior Men’s Single Sculls (JM1x) – Heats
The men’s single sculls had attracted the largest field of these junior World Championships. Coming from 35 nations, the scullers were divided into six heats and the aim was to finish in the top three for a direct path to Friday’s quarterfinals.

Heat One opened with Poland’s Natan Wegrzycki-Szymczyk blasting out at the start. Wegrzycki-Szymczyk was fifth at last year’s junior championships and at 200m tall he was powering down the course. Despite the top three qualifying, Wegrzycki-Szymczyk had decided to completely dominate and opened up a huge 14 second lead at the half-way point. A battle was going on between Lithuania (Paulius Merkys) and Slovakia (Dean Maslo) for second place. Maslo got the better of it, but no one could catch Wegrzycki-Szymczyk. At the line Wegrzycki-Szymczyk had backed off but still won by over six seconds, earning the fastest qualifying time of all six heats. Poland, Slovakia and Lithiania had qualified.

Heat Two had Norway’s Jan Helvig in the lead. Helvig raced last year in the quad and today he was doing just enough to remain in front with the Czech Republic in second. The Czechs won this event last year and this year the mantle has been handed to a new sculler, Stepan-Adam Havlicek. Then Moldavia came up to challenge the United States who had slotted in third. Moldavia’s Sergei Oboianschii was successful. He will join Helvig and Havlicek in the quarterfinals.

One rower looked to dominate Heat Three. Axel Haack of Argentina had the lead. This is the fourth junior championships for Haack and last year he was 10th in the single. Behind Haack it was France’s Maxime Ducret with Tunisia’s Mohamed Taie

France’s Maxime Ducret races in the junior men’s single sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

b in third. Then Ducret, who must have been saving his energy, did the better sprint to the line and overtook Haack. Haack didn’t seem too concerned about being second and buttoned right off. Ducret, Haack and Taieb were the qualifiers.

The fourth heat saw Boris Yotov of Azerbaijan get a yellow card for being late to the start. It didn’t seem to worry him as he got off the line quickly just behind Serbia’s Andreija Sljukic. Sljukic was formerly a coxswain and last year he raced to bronze in the pair. Sljukic continued to lead through the middle of the race.

As the final sprint came into view Sljukic remained out in front with European Junior Championship winner, Yotov still in second with Belgium’s Pierre De Loof taking the third and final qualifying spot.

Heat Five saw Cuba’s Orlando Sotolongo out in front. Sotolongo, 16, had already made a statement around the boat park with his impressive Mohawk hairstyle. Sotolongo must have liked the conditions as he continued to power away at the head of the field. Croatia’s Ivan Zupanovic followed in second. Zupanovic was seventh at the European Junior Championships and that must have been a good start to the season for the Croatian. Coming into the close Sotolongo dropped his stroke rate from his high mid-30s average down to the low 30s. Sotolongo had qualified in first. Zupanovic took second and Greece’s Michail Papaptsimpas qualified from third, about ten seconds back.

Germany’s Nicolas Schlueter led from the start in Heat Six. Schlueter was the only rower in this race to have international experience. Schlueter was in his nation’s quad last year. Following Schlueter was Graham Peeters of Canada with Italy’s Michele Mazzarini right there. At the line the qualifying order remained unchanged. Schlueter was first, Peeters was second and Mazzarini took third.

Junior Women’s Single Sculls (JW1x) – Heats
The women’s single sculls had attracted the largest women’s field. Coming from 27 nations, these scullers were divided into five heats with the top four crews from each heat getting to go directly to the quarterfinals on Friday.

Heat One opened with Germany’s Tina Christmann in the lead with Jessica Leyden of Great Britain in second. Coming through the third 500m Leyden successfully challenged for the lead with Christmann not prepared to react. Leyden has spent two years in the quad, but she was showing her skills in the single today. At the line Leyden was first, Christmann, at a lower rate, was second and Bulgaria’s Desislava Georgieva came in third with Anna Sture taking out the final qualifying spot. Leyden also recorded the fastest qualifying time of the five heats.

A big lead was being created by Tatsiana Klimovich of Belarus in Heat Two. Klimovich looked to be holding nothing back as she led the field. Klimovich won the European Rowing Championships earlier this season and she remained in front of Camila Valle Granados of Peru, then Italy’s Bianca Pelloni and Shiono Sato of Japan. Valle Granados then caught a crab, but she recovered quickly and continued on her way. Klimovich easily crossed in first place, Pelloni took second, Valle Granados was in third and Sato took the fourth and final qualifying spot.

Heat Three had five crews lining up so the aim here was not to come last. All other spots would qualify for the quarterfinals. Leading through the first half was Elodie Ravera-Scaramozzino of France. Ravera-Scaramozzino raced the last two year in the double with a fifth place finish in 2012. Romania’s Ionela-Livia Lehaci followed in second with the United States and Israel battling it out for third. A big closing sprint by Christina Johnson of the United States took her ahead of Romania and into second. Ravera-Scaramozzino crossed the line in first, Johnson took second and Romania and Israel qualified for the quarterfinals from third and fourth respectively.

Opening up in the lead of Heat Four was Sweden’s Lovisa Claesson with Den

Lovissa Claesson of Sweden races in the junior women’s single sculls heat at the 2013 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania.

mark’s Sofie Mikkelsen in second. Going through the middle of the race Claesson continued to lead when Mikkelsen completely lost an oar. The Dane, however, quickly recovered and remained in second. Ukraine’s Anastasiia Horodilova was in third. Coming through to the finish Claesson remained in a clear lead of ten seconds. Mikkelsen followed in second, Horodilova was in third and Mexico’s Dianayeli Gomez Ledezma did a great finish to come through in fourth.

The last race of the day, Heat Five opened with Brazil’s Beatriz Cardoso doing well. Cardosa raced last week at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships and last year she was 18th in this event. Medien van der Laan of the Netherlands followed in second with Alexandra Varekova of the Czech Republic firmly in third. This race was rather spread out and it was very unlikely that the order would change before the end. At the line Cardoso was first, van der Laan in second, Varekova in third and Switzerland’s Lisa Cassina took the very last qualifying spot of the day as the sun set over Lake Galve.