Lightweight Women’s Double Sculls (LW2x) – Finals
The heats indicated that the Netherlands crew of Marieke Keijser and Ilse Paulis were the crew to beat. They won in a commanding time with Poland’s Weronika Deresz and Joanna Dorociak winning the other heat. All other crews had to go through the repechage to get to this final. Paulis is the Olympic Champion in this boat class and she is coming back in 2018 after taking a year off. Deresz and Dorociak finished fourth at last year’s World Rowing Championships and they took an early lead through the first 500m mark. The rest of the field was locked together with the Dutch underrating the field.
Four crews were practically level at the 1000m mark with Switzerland and Romania moving with the Dutch and Polish. Switzerland’s Patricia Merz and Frederique Rol have medalled this year in the World Cup series with Romania’s Ionela-Livia Cozmiuc and Gianina-Elena Beleaga the 2017 World Champions.
Paulis with new partner Marieke Keijser had now pushed into the lead leaving Poland to chase them. The Dutch continued to lead the way through the final sprint rating 37 with Poland at 39 and Romania at 41. It was tight for the bronze. Gold went to the Netherlands, silver to Poland and Switzerland took bronze by just 0.22 of a second over Romania.
Results: NED, POL, SUI, ROU, ITA, GBR
Ilse Paulis (s), Netherlands, gold
“This is phenomenal! We’ve done well in the World Cup series but to win now at the European Rowing Championships, feels extremely special. We really enjoyed the atmosphere as it was really cool and a great experience.”
Weronika Deresz (b), Poland, silver
“It’s a great feeling to medal at European championships. Obviously we wanted to win today, but Ned was faster.”
Frederique Rol (s), Switzerland, bronze
“Very happy to come here and achieve what we wanted. This is a good step towards Tokyo. To medal at a championship event is really special. Especially with such a close race, we weren’t even sure even we were on the podium.”
In the repechages two days ago Ireland was to fastest of these boats. At the start it was Leonie Pless and Katrin Thoma of Germany that had the lead. Austria and Ireland followed closely behind. Germany are perhaps the most experienced of these crews and they looked like they were making the best of it today. Greece comes to the European Championships after finishing fourth last week at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships. They were in fourth. Ireland now moved into second and the sprint was on. Ireland went to 41 with Germany at 39. The Germans got to the line with a half second win.
Results: GER, IRL, AUT, GRE, NOR