08 December 2019

Rowing: Katherine Grainger wins back crown at Trials

March 12, 2012

Held at the Olympic rowing venue Eton-Dorney, the weekend’s racing in the finals of the Rowing Team Senior Trials turned out to be one of the most competitive and exciting ever seen at a trials.

To start off the day, World silver medallists, Helen Glover and Heather Stanning powered to victory in the women’s pair beating team mates Jess Eddie and Louisa Reeve with a time of 7:01.47.

And in the lightweight women’s single scull, it was a close affair with Andrea Dennis and Imogen Walsh both in close contention, however it was Kat Copeland, who just came out on top winning in a time of 7:43.15.

“I just wanted to put in the fastest race I could and not worry about what was happening around me”, said Copeland afterwards,  “I felt people around me and knew they were pushing up closer and then falling back but I just wanted to focus on what I was doing and it worked”.

Behind her, last year’s winner Sophie Hosking finished in second place with a time of 7:44.73 and Imogen Walsh was third with 7:45.11.

Next on the course came one of the most eagerly awaited finals of the day, the women’s single scull showdown between the 2011 World Champion double scull crewmates Katherine Grainger (pictured) and Anna Watkins.

Watkins ended Grainger’s streak of six successive Trials titles in the single last year, however failed to beat her again this weekend, with Grainger just holding on to victory in what might be her last trials event if she chooses to retire after London 2012.

Gloucester’s Beth Rodford came in third while Frances Houghton, who is bidding for a place in her fourth Olympics, was fourth.

Afterwards, Hougton said, “This time last year I wouldn’t have dreamed about being here. It’s great to do a full weekend of racing and be in top form.”

Following the trials, GB Performance Director David Tanner said,”We’ve had some outstanding and very close racing today. That tells us that the depth in the squad is really, really strong.

“Also, we’ve seen that the venue has delivered. We’ve had good weather and we’ve had a lot of British public here today and that support has been exceptional.

“I think we have all got the feeling and the message now that the Olympic Games are close and we will and can step up to them and having our Olympic trials here finishing in the sunshine has been just the starter we needed for the 2012 season”.

More info: www.britishrowing.org

Lizzie Flint, Sportsister
The Women’s Sports Magazine

Photo credit: GB Rowing Team

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