Men's Single Sculls (M1x) - Final
In the semifinals yesterday five time World Champion and Olympic Champion Mahe Drysdale of New Zealand beat reigning World Champion Ondrej Synek of the Czech Republic. This is Drysdale's first international event this season and he admitted coming into this regatta that he did not know where he stood against his competition. Today Drysdale learnt the answer.
At the start Synek stamped his dominance by going out hard and getting nearly a boat length lead over the next fastest - Marcel Hacker of Germany. In single sculling however, it only takes three or four strokes for the leading order to change.
In the middle 1000 the field closed up with Hacker looking ready to strike out at Synek and last year's silver medallist Angel Fournier Rodriguez of Cuba right in the mix. But the race was far from over. Performing a negative split race plan, Drysdale was picking up speed as the race progressed. The crowd were straining to see the final sprint as margins between leader Synek and Drysdale got closer and closer.
In the close of the race a back-on-form Drysdale took out Synek with every stroke and earned the gold medal. A tired Synek took second with Fournier adding a bronze to his growing collection.
Results: NZL, CZE, CUB, GER, BLR, CAN
Gold - Mahe Drysdale (NZL)
It was a good race. it wasn’t quite how I planned it would go but to come out with a victory, well I’m over the moon. I came here with the goal to come within 5 seconds of the winner, so to be the winner is great.
Silver - Ondrej Synek (CZE)
It was very difficult to compete against Mahe again. The last few days have been very difficult for me because my father died. I wanted to win for my father and next time I will do my best for him.
Bronze - Angel Fournier (CUB)
With the sun and the heat, and competitors like Mahe and Ondrej, it’s so difficult and takes so much effort. I will keep improving technically to get better and better.
Roel Braas of the Netherlands came into the single last year after rowing in his nation's men's eight. He finished a very promising fifth at last year's World Rowing Championships and he is back in the single again this year. Braas missed out on the A-final by less than half a second in yesterday's semifinals. Today Braas led from start to finish with no other sculler able to match his pace. Meanwhile, behind Braas a Scandinavian battle went on between 2008 Olympic Champion Olaf Tufte of Norway and Robert Ven of Finland. Ven had the better finishing push and despite Tufte's higher rating, Ven got through ahead.
Results: NED, FIN, NOR, ARG, USA, FRA2