European Champions Crowned on Poznan’s Lake Malta
The Netherlands topped the medal table at the 2020 European Rowing Championships in Poznan, Poland with
an incredible eight gold medals. Italy and Romania earned four golds each.
PR1 women’s single sculls (PR1W1x) – Final
The 2019 world silver medallist, Nathalie Benoit continued to develop her return to the sport today. Leading by more than a length at the 500m marker Benoit held off threats from the young Anna Sheremet who is, by comparison, relatively new to the sport. The lead was maintained to the line with Benoit securing the first gold medal of the Championships.
Results: FRA, UKR, GER, BLR, ITA
Nathalie Benoit, France, Gold: “This means a lot, because it’s the first time para is included in the European championships, and I know there is a very strong field in para rowing in Europe.”
Anna Sheremet, Ukraine, Silver : “That was a very good race for me. Today wee had great weather and conditions. It’s
great to be racing with the other athletes today.”
Sylvia Pille-Steppat, Germany, Bronze : “Better conditions today with less wind. I had higher expectation with my position in the heat but I’m still glad with this result.”
PR1 men’s single sculls (PR1M1x) – Final
As expected, reigning World Champion Roman Polianskyi led the final from the start, with the rest of the field in his sight throughout the race and the positions unchanged. Significantly over-rating his competitors for the majority of the race, Polianskyi dropped his boat speed towards the line, but remained well in control of the race.
Results: UKR, RUS, GER, HUN, BLR, POL
Roman Polianskyi, Ukraine, Gold : “We had a great atmosphere in our team. But we still always have to work hard. Coming here and winning means a lot to me.”
Alexey Chuvashev, Russian Federation, Silver: “It was very good. Especially with the pandemic, it was great to be out there racing. This is a great step forward for para rowing, having it in the European championships.”
Lightweight women’s single sculls (LW1x) – Final
Having qualified directly from the heats, Martine Veldhuis took the early lead, almost a length by 500m but was clearly up against tough competition with the following three scullers fighting for the medals. In the third quarter of the race, Poland’s Katayzyna Welna came under pressure from the young Swiss sculler Sofia Meakin. It was all to play for in the closing stages and Meakin timed the last part of her race incredibly well, to move into silver medal position.
Results: NED, SUI, ITA NOR, POL, RUS
Martine Veldhuis, Netherlands, Gold : “It’s very nice to stand here and have the gold medal. Really happy of this, this has been a great experience.”
Sofia Meakin, Switzerland, Silver : “I had a really bad start. But I managed to stay in my bubble and get into my race. I
normally start quick, so this was quite different. I sprinted at the end and I think the Italian was quite surprised.”
Paola Piazzolla, Italy, Bronze : “That race was so hard. I can’t believe I came away with a medal. It’s my first one in
the single sculls. I really had to sprint at the end for it, and I am so happy.”
Lightweight men’s single sculls (LM1x) – Final
Reigning European Champion Peter Galambos of Hungary was quickest off the start but Ireland’s Fintan McCarthy soon caught up and Italy’s young sculler Niels Torre was also well within the lead pack but it was hard to discount any of the other competitors. Indeed, by the halfway marker, Antonios Papakonstantinou from Greece had moved into second place. At 1,500m, Norway’s Kristoffer Brun put on a huge push to move into second place and then started to put serious pressure on McCarthy. Torre took his rating up to 42 strokes per minute closing in on McCarthy and Brun, Brun just clinging on to the gold medal and Torre taking the silver.
Results: NOR, ITA, IRL, GRE, HUN, BEL
Kristoffer Brun, Norway, Gold : "It’s been tough for everyone this season. So it’s great fun to come here and compete. But even more fun to win!”
Niels Torre, Italy, Silver : “I started really fast as to not be behind at the start. In the middle I really suffered, but managed to sprint at the end. I’m very happy to be on the podium.”
Fintan Mccarthy, Ireland, Bronze :“I am disappointed not to win. But it was still a good race. I’ve been working really hard on my start which is better right now.”
PR2 Mixed Double Sculls (PR2Mix2x) – Final
The Russians made the best of the start, taking the early lead. However, by the 500m marker it was the reigning European champions from the Netherlands who had reached their cruising speed. By the midway point, the Netherlands had achieved a clear water lead ahead of the Ukraine with Poland holding on to bronze medal position. The positions remained unchanged throughout the remainder of the race allowing the Netherlands to maintain their title.
Results: NED, UKR, POL, FRA, RUS, ITA
Corne De Koning (s), Netherlands, Gold : “Very special to win here. We pretty much live for this moment. We haven’t raced for 14 months. So it’s great to do this.”
Iaroslav Koiuda (s), Ukraine, Silver : “It was very difficult, but we are happy with the result. We are very happy that para is now included in the European championships.”
Michal Gadowski (s), Poland, Bronze : “The race was good. It was very hard. The weather was perfect for us to race.”
PR3 Mixed Coxed Four (PR3Mix4+) – Final
Russia, who finished fifth at the 2019 World Rowing Championships repeated the fast start that they had shown in Friday’s preliminary race but Italy did not let them get away and by halfway, the Italians had taken the lead. Whilst Italy over-rated Russia and continued to move away there was a battle between France and Ukraine, fighting for the bronze medal. Ukraine came through into silver position in the final quarter of the race with France taking bronze.
Results: ITA, UKR, FRA, RUS, NED
Stanislav Samoliuk, Ukraine, Silver : “We are very happy with second as it wasn’t easy. It’s our first competition in a while. So to get this result is great.”
Lightweight Women’s Quadruple Sculls (LW4x) – Final
It was all to play for in this final but the Italian crew, who have been together for some time, didn’t leave Germany behind off the start and there was just over 0.5 seconds between them at 500m. It was a question of which crew was going to make the first move. At halfway, the boat speed of Italy was just slightly higher and, as they moved into the third quarter of the race, the Italians could see Germany behind them and continued to extend their lead.
Results: ITA, GER
Silvia Crosio, Italy, Gold : “We tried to be fast off the start and push off from the German boat. By the 1000m mark, we were well ahead. This is our 2nd year in the crew, and it’s a great one.”
Elisabeth Mainz (b), Germany, Silver : “It was a really good race considering we had only 11 days together in the boat.
We’re quite young so we’re here to learn. We all gave it our best.”
Lightweight Men’s Quadruple Sculls (LM4x) – Final
Although Italy didn’t appear to be quite ready for the start, it didn’t seem to affect them and with a rating of 38, they crossed the 500m marker first. Austria and Germany enjoyed a great contest for the silver and bronze medals, trading places in the third quarter of the race. Austria didn’t have enough to respond to the German push in the third quarter and held their position to the line taking silver, behind Italy.
Results: ITA, GER, AUT, HUN
Patrick Rocek, Italy, Gold : “It’s a special moment for us as it’s been such a long year. So it feels great to come and win.”
Julian Schneider (b), Germany, Silver : “It was a tough race. The other nations are strong. We were 2nd in the exhibition yesterday, and aimed for first today, but were still happy with the result.”
Sebastian Kabas, Austria, Bronze : “We tried to go fast on the first 1000m. We stayed with the pack as long as possible, but then got dropped at the end.”
Women’s Pair (W2-) – Final
Romania dominated the first part of the race, ahead of the young combination from Greece. The Greek pair, who are under-23 Champions in the women’s pair, had half a length lead over their Spanish rivals at 500m and it was hard to discount Denmark. By halfway, the Romanians had achieved clear water and showed no signs of easing off in the second half of the race. Greece and Spain were absolutely level at 1,500m with Spain starting their sprint first. There was no chance of anyone catching Romania in the final stages of the race and the young Greek pair didn’t quite have enough to catch Spain.
Results: ROU, ESP, GRE, DEN, IRL, ITA
Aina Cid (b), Spain, Silver : “It was a good race. We changed some things after our first race this weekend, and most of them went to plan. We could really tell this was the first race out of the pandemic, we need more high intensity pieces.”
Maria Kyridou (b), Greece, Bronze : “We started really well and got at 1000m to second, but then Spain past us and we finished third. But I’m still very happy considering the year that’s been.”
Men’s Pair (M2-) – Final
The Netherlands had the quickest start and crossed the 500m marker nearly half a length ahead of reigning World Champions, Croatia. Romania moved into second place at 1,000m, where all six boats were within a length of each other. Romania started to draw level with the Dutch and had taken the lead by 1,500m with Italy also starting to close the gap. Romania continued to move away in the final quarter of the race, and the Sinkovic brothers really started to lift their pace, moving into silver medal position.
Results: ROU, CRO, ITA, NED, ESP, DEN
Ciprian Tudosa (s), Romania, Gold : “This is a great feeling. Today we just made sure we raced our race. We expected a good race but to win gold is a dream come true.
Martin Sinkovic (b), Croatia, Silver : “Our race wasn’t our best, but we have to give our compliments to Romania who were the best out there today. They were the fastest, and we are happy to be able to race.”
Matteo Lodo (b), Italy, Bronze : “We had a good start and we were all pretty close together. In the end it came down
to a sprint and the best came through but we are still happy with our result.”
Women’s Double Sculls (W2x) – Final
The 2019 World silver medallists Romania took the early lead and continued to dominate ahead of the Netherlands who had a slightly wobbly start. The very well-established combination form Czech Republic were third at 1,000m, but under pressure from Germany and France. It was clear that Romania had escaped the chasing pack in the second half of the race and the race was on for silver and bronze. The Netherlands held on to second place and it was France who overcame Germany to take the third medal.
Results: ROU, NED, FRA, CZE, GER, ITA
Simona Geanina Radis (s), Romania, Gold : “It was a very good race, and were so happy with the result. It’s our second medal this season after the European U23s, but this is the one that really counts.”
Roos De Jong (b), Netherlands, Silver : “We had quite a hard preparation for the race so I’m very happy to stand on the
podium here. It will be motivating for next year. Our mindset coming in was to win but Romania were too strong. I’m still happy with the result.”
Helene Lefebvre (b), France, Bronze :“We are a little disappointed in our race. It wasn’t how we wanted to race, but we are still happy to be on the podium. We weren’t as technical as we were earlier this weekend.”
Men’s Double Sculls (M2x) – Final
The field in this final had huge pedigree with Olympic, World and European medallists. The Swiss double started with punishing speed in a bid to better their silver medal from last year’s European Rowing Championships. The Dutch moved into the lead at 1,000m and then continued to move away. The Swiss were then facing challenges from Poland and Ireland for the silver and bronze medals. Ireland took the rating up to 42 in the final stages of the race for a huge sprint, and the Swiss had to respond to hang on to the silver medal.
Results: NED, SUI, IRL, POL, LTU, ROU
Melvin Twellaar (b), Netherlands, Gold : “It’s an incredible feeling. It’s been a frustrating season with Covid. But we believed in our training. And it’s great to come away with the win.”
Barnabe Delarze (b), Switzerland, Silver : “It was a fight, it always is in the double. There are a few new crews out there, single scullers who went into the double. There are also some good crews who aren’t here. We weren’t sure what to expect this weekend. We’re happy, but we still need some fine tuning before next year.”
Ronan Byrne (s), Ireland, Bronze : “This is huge. We’re a new crew, and we did well at Irish trials. We won at U23s, and to know at even a step up at the senior level we can podium is huge."
Women’s Four (W4-) – Final
The 2019 World bronze medallists Denmark were the early leaders, going off the start at 47 strokes per minute, but by 500m it was the Dutch silver medallists from that same Championships that had taken the lead, with Ireland in second place and Italy in third. At 1,000m, the Netherlands had a good margin ahead of Ireland. Meanwhile, the new combination from Italy were continuing to hold third place, just ahead of Denmark. The Italians started to lift their boat speed in the third quarter, closing the gap on Ireland making it almost level at 1,500m. Nobody could touch the Netherlands in the final quarter of the race but Italy moved through in to second place.
Results: NED, ITA, IRL, DEN, ROU, RUS
Veronique Meester (s), Netherlands, Gold : “It was a good race, we had some really good pushes. We managed to get a length ahead of the others. Last year we won, so we really wanted to do this again. We were doing some fast times in the summer so I’m very pleased to win.”
Aisha Rocek (b), Kiri Tontodonati, Italy, Silver :“Difficult race, as it is our first competition together, we had not been together very long but I am really proud of us and it is a good start.”
Aifric Keogh (b), Ireland, Bronze : “This is our first a-final as a crew, our first big event as a crew. We knew there were
some big names in this event. We had some steering difficulties off the start, but we managed to get it back together.”
Men’s Four (M4-) – Final
Local favourites Poland were a bit slow off the blocks allowing Austria to take the lead. However, it was the Netherlands first through the 500m marker. Germany started to make their presence felt in the second quarter of the race whilst Poland had moved into second place, the Netherlands still leading. Italy moved into second place in the third 500m and despite the home support, Poland didn’t quite have enough in the tank to close the gap and finished just over a second behind, taking the bronze medal.
Results: NED, ITA, POL, AUT, FRA, GER
Boudewijn Roell, Netherlands, Gold : “We didn’t know what to expect. Our first race didn’t go as planned. Our second race was better, and in the semis we really got it together. We started fast, and plowed through it. Amazing!”
Bruno Rosetti, Italy, Silver : “It was a hard race but it was really good. We are happy with the result as last year
we came up 4th. This summer has been quite hard to keep the focus so now with this result it will be a good push for the future.”
Lightweight Women’s Double Sculls (LW2x) – Final
After a false start from Italy, the race got off cleanly second time round. It was then Italy who took the lead off the start but the 2019 European silver medallists from France that got to the 500m marker first, less than a canvas ahead of Italy. The Netherlands were third at 500m but increased their boat speed in the second 500m to take the lead at the halfway marker. Romania moved into medal contention in the second half of the race where France started to close the gap on the Netherlands. Italy weren’t being left behind and moved into second place by 1,500m. In the final 500, the Dutch held on to their length lead but the other two medals were all to play for. Italy dispatched Romania into bronze medal position, who held off an impressive final sprint from Poland.
Results: NED, ITA, ROU, POL, BLR, FRA
Marieke Keijser (b), Netherlands, Gold : “Really happy of this, it was tough conditions our there. We were really patient and waited for our time, we pushed at the 1500m. Summer training was fun. We are really happy."
Federica Cesarini (s), Italy, Silver : “It was a good race, we were very balanced. The whole field was close together, so
are very happy to medal. I’m also coming out of an injury, so this is a bonus.”
Gianina-Elena Beleaga (s), Romania, Bronze : “That was a very tough race. It was so close! We are happy to be able to race again, but sad that this is the only race of the season.”
Lightweight Men’s Double Sculls (LM2x) – Final
Italy were silver to Germany’s gold at the 2019 European Rowing Championships but by the 500m marker this year, Italy had three quarters of a length lead. Germany had started to close the gap at the halfway marker. Meanwhile, Belgium, in third place, were starting to move away from Poland. Germany put on a final charge, really trying to close the gap with Italy, the two crews matching boat speeds. The photo finish confirmed that Italy had held Germany off by 0.13 seconds.
Results: ITA, GER, BEL, POL, SUI, UKR
Stefano Oppo (b), Italy, Gold : "We had a strong pace during the race. This is my first title in the double. For me it’s magic.”
Jason Osborne (s), Germany, Silver : “It was a very strong field. So even though wee didn’t win we are happy with the result. It was important to race today and get the boat moving.”
Tim Brys (s), Belgium, Bronze : “Our race went as planned. We wanted to start fast, as we knew Germany and Italy are fast on the start. We emptied the tank in the last 500, which was all we had. We’re very happy.”
Women’s Quadruple Sculls (W4x) – Final
The line-up included several relatively newly-formed crews but with a wealth of medals from other boat types. Ukraine took the early lead with stroke Olena Buryak setting a great rhythm. The Dutch efficiency enabled them to move up, and take the lead by 1,000m as the speed in the Ukrainian boat dropped. There was just half a length separating four boats at the halfway marker, all fighting for the three medals. In the third quarter, Germany moved into second place with Ukraine in third, but Poland were also starting to take advantage of the home support. The Netherlands maintained their lead and Germany managed to hold off the final charge from Poland.
Results: NED, GER, POL, UKR, ITA, SUI
Laila Youssifou (b), Netherlands, Gold : “We didn’t have any expectations other than how we wanted to execute our race. After the heats we felt like we could push more. So we gave it absolutely everything today and it just happened to be enough for the gold.”
Carlotta Nwajide, Germany, Silver : ”We were hoping to win but congratulations to the Netherlands, they were pretty
strong. We had a good start and were in second place and we held this through the end.”
Men’s Quadruple Sculls (M4x) – Final
It was a strong calibre on the start line for this final with the reigning World and European Champions from the Netherlands taking control of the start of the race and seeming to run away with the lead entirely. Italy were holding a fairly comfortable second place at 1,000m, as the Netherlands continued to provide an excellent demonstration of sculling. Through 1,500m Lithuania were under pressure from Estonia for the bronze medal. Nobody could match the Dutch as they crossed the line first to maintain their title as European Champions.
Results: NED, ITA, LTU, EST, POL, GER
Tone Wieten, Netherlands, Gold : “Our heat was good, so we knew we had good speed. We just wanted to focus on our race today. Our first half was good, but the second not as much. But obviously we are still very pleased with the result.”
Luca Rambaldi, Italy, Silver : “We’re fine with the result it was a good race, we knew the Netherlands were going to be strong. We tried to keep up with them but at 1000m they pushed and we couldn’t keep up. From here we just tried to control the race and keep our medal.”
Dovydas Nemeravicius (b), Lithuania, Bronze : “We didn’t expect this result. We’ve been able to train all season, so that kept us positive. We haven’t had great results the past 2 years, so hopefully this is the start of something good.”
Women’s Eight (W8+) – Final
The women’s eights at this year’s European Rowing Championships were all relatively new line-ups. The Netherlands and Romania pushed out in front during the early stages of the race with Germany and Russia jostling for third place. The lead had swapped at the halfway marker with Romania nudging ahead and extending to two thirds of a length in the third quarter of the 2,000m race.
Meanwhile, Germany were closing in, and putting pressure on the Netherlands. Romania maintained their lead and whilst the Dutch were giving it everything, it wasn’t quite enough to match the German charge for the line. You could see the delight on the faces of the German crew as they realised that they had crossed the line just 0.43 seconds ahead of the Netherlands.
Results: ROU, GER, NED, RUS
Amalia Beres, Romania, Gold : “Very happy, we really needed this competition. And to do it with my sister here today is amazing.”
Marie-Catherine Arnold, Germany, Silver : “We didn’t look to see what the other crews were doing, we really just focused on ourselves. We listened to our cox, larina, who told us to go for it. We didn’t even realize after we crossed the line that we were 2nd!”
Women’s Single Sculls (W1x) – Final
Many of these scullers have come up against each other several times before. Austria’s Magdalena Lobnig took the early lead, but it was reigning World Champion Sanita Puspure of Ireland who moved into the lead position at the halfway marker and extended that lead with every stroke. Fie Udby Erichsen of Denmark had half a length contact over Lobnig in the last quarter of the race with Switzerland’s Jeannine Gmelin also maintaining contact. In the final stages of the race, Greece’s Anneta Kyridou seemed to come from nowhere to overtake Erichsen and take the bronze medal.
Results: IRL, AUT, GRE, DEN, SUI, GER
Sanita Puspure, Ireland, Gold : “It was very fast. I just kept my head down and focused on my race. I executed it the best I could, but those girls are fast!”
Magdalena Lobnig, Austria, Silver : “It was a really nice race but I felt like in the middle I changed my pace too much.
Sanita was too strong. It’s been a difficult season so I’m really pleased.”
Anneta Kyridou, Greece, Bronze :“It was my first race at the senior level in the single sculls, so I really just wanted to focus on myself. I didn’t have specific expectations. I’ve been training all season for the European qualifications, but then those got cancelled. So it’s been nice to race at an event after all.”
Men’s Single Sculls (M1x) – Final
Germany’s Oliver Zeidler seemed to get left behind off the start but a few powerful strokes pulled him back in contention and around 400m in, Zeidler started to pull ahead of Kjetil Borch of Norway. With Stefanos Ntouskos in third, the rest of the field was lagging slightly. As the lead scullers passed 1,000m, Ntouskos had moved into second place and whilst
Zeidler had a comfortable lead, the silver and bronze medals were all to play for. As the battle for medals continued, Zeidler was reeled in slightly. Sverri Nielsen started his sprint early, starting to draw level with Zeidler and Poland’s Wegrzycki-Szymcyk was also making a last-minute attack and moved into second place, despatching Zeidler into fourth.
Results: DEN, POL, NOR, GER, GRE, BUL
Sverri Nielsen, Denmark, gold : “Really good race for me, tried to stay close to Norway and wait for my time until the last 500m. So happy to get a medal.”
Natan Wegrzycki-Szymczyk, Poland, silver : “I just wanted the best race I could have, and it went really well from the start. I knew the others were really fast but I focused on my boat. This is my first senior medal, and in the single (after rowing in university 8+s for 5 year). It’s so great, especially after a really disappointing result last year.”
Kjetil Borch, Norway, bronze : “I didn’t expect anything from the race really. I had a quick start and it felt good. I could see the others catching up to me. Sverri passed me and I could feel myself at a slower pace. I tried to catch up towards the 1250m, and the last 500m I went for it. I honestly thought crossing the line I was 4th or 5th.”
Men’s Eight (M8+) – Final
In the last race of the Championships, it was 2019 World and European Champions Germany that led the race from the start, closely followed by the world silver medallists from the Netherlands. However, in the second half of the race, it was Romania that moved through in to silver medal position, pushing the Dutch to the bronze.
Results: GER, ROU, NED, ITA, LTU
Torben Johannesen, Germany, Gold : “This win really meant a lot to us as it’s been such a crazy year.”