Lightweight Women’s Single Sculls (BLW1x) – Final
Imogen Grant of Great Britain has been having a great regatta and season. She finished fourth at one of the World Cups and sat in the coveted middle lane. The early leader was Grant just ahead of Australia’s Wallis Russell. All boats were still in the mid 30s stroke rate with Grant and Russell at 35. These two boats went through the middle of the race tied matching each other stroke for stroke. Germany and Switzerland were right behind and still on the pace.
Grant kept the pressure on and the all-important third 500 saw Grant moving quicker than the rest of the field. She moved away from Wallis with Vera Spanke of Germany now overtaking Wallis and moving up to challenge Grant. Spanke medalled last year in the quad and has now moved across to the single. The final sprint had begun with Grant at 36 and holding a handy margin. Spanke now had Italy’s Clara Guerra tearing down the outside and taking on Spanke. Guerra was second in 2017 and wanted to show she still had it. Grant had won and was just one second off an under-23 Best Time. Germany got second with the remaining times having to be verified. They were so close. When the times came through Italy and Australia had tied for third. It would have to go to the 100th of a second.
Results: GBR, GER, ITA, AUS, SUI, NZL
Imogen Grant, Great Britain, gold
“I knew I had a good shot at a medal today as I came first in heats and semis but I also knew that the conditions would be very different, so I decided to stick to my race plan and it went really well.”
Vera Spanke, Germany, silver
“The race was fine, I’m actually really happy with the result. It was tough overall. I tried to push in the middle but didn’t work as I had hoped. I’m still happy with my result as this is a step up from the bronze I won last year.”
Greece was the fastest qualifier of these boats from yesterday’s semifinals, but it was Elena-Iuliana Mihai of Romania who got away the fastest. These tail wind conditions often suit lightweight rowers and times were quick through the middle of the race. The Czech Republic followed closely. Then Kristyna Neuhortova of the Czech Republic took over in the leas as Mihai couldn’t hold her early pace.
Results: CZE, GRE, ROU, USA, URU, CHN