Racing in the eights help pick the Top 10 rowers for 2018
The thrilling 2018 season has come to a close and the scores have been tallied. World Rowing reveals the 2018 Top 10 rowers.
The Germans dominated the men’s side following an impressive season for their men’s eight which saw them win every final. This helped put Richard Schmidt into the top 10 number one spot.
On the women’s side Emily Regan from the United States ranked number one after the US women’s eight took back the top of the podium at this year’s World Rowing Championships. Regan was part of the US women’s eight that won gold two years ago at the Rio Olympic Games.
Top 10 Men
1. Richard Schmidt (Germany)
2. Hannes Ocik (Germany)
3. Malte Jakschik (Germany)
In 2017, Schmidt, Ocik and Jakschik ranked seventh to nineth on the Top 10 list, but with their continued dominant performance in the German men’s eight, they jumped to the top. These three have been mainstays in the flagship German boat that won silver at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, gold at the 2017 World Championships and then scored an unbeaten (in the A-final) season in 2018, capping it off with another world championship title. They also hold the World Best Time, which they set in 2017 at the second World Rowing Cup in Poznan, Poland. The tiebreak to put Schmidt at the top is his long-standing career in rowing. He first competed internationally in 2004. Ocik started internationally in 2009 and Jakschik in 2010. Richard Schmidt’s bio. Hannes Ocik’s bio. Malte Jakschik’s bio
4. Valent Sinkovic (Croatia)
5. Martin Sinkovic (Croatia)
The Sinkovic brothers are also regulars on the World Rowing Top 10 list. Despite finishing second in the men’s pair at the 2017 World Rowing Championships, they still managed to grab places three and four on the list in that year. At the 2018 World Rowing Championships, they were back on top, with in impressive final race against Romania and France. The brothers transitioned from the men’s double sculls after setting the World Best Time in the double and becoming Olympic Champions back in 2016. Their first year in the men’s pair was impressive to say the least and 2018 another step up. At the 2018 World Champs, they came dangerously close to Bond and Murray’s World Best Time. Valent edges slightly ahead of Martin because he started his international career two years earlier, in 2004. Valent bio. Martin bio.
6. Alexander Hill (Australia)
Hill is the sole Australian on the Top 10 list this year. He has moved up four spots since his 10th place finish in 2017. Hill won silver at the 2016 Olympic Games before going on the win the World Championships in the men’s four in 2017. In a stunning sprint finish, Australia managed to hold off an Italian charge and retain their world championship title in the men’s four at this year’s World Championships. Hill is the only remaining member of the 2016 Olympic silver-medallist crew, giving him the extra points needed to charge into the Top 10. Alexander Hill’s bio.
7. Paul O’Donovan (Ireland)
The master of pulling like a dog has pulled his way onto the Top 10 list. O’Donovan is the only Irish rower to have ever made the Top 10 list and it’s thanks to his consistent performances over the past three years. Following Olympic silver in 2016, O’Donovan raced, and won, the lightweight men’s single sculls at the 2017 World Championships when his brother Gary was sidelined due to illness. The duo was back together for the 2018 season and managed to pull off the gold at the World Championships. They took the lead 1000m into the race and held it to the line. The O’Donovan brothers won by almost two seconds, a feat rarely of in lightweight rowing. These star performances earned Paul O’Donovan a spot in the top 10. Paul's bio.
=8. Felix Wimberger (Germany)
=8. Maximilian Planer (Germany)
=10. Torben Johannesen (Germany)
=10. Johannes Weissenfeld (Germany)
Capping off the Top 10 are another four out of the German men’s eight. Wimberger, Planer, Johannesen and Weissenfeld joined the boat in 2017, so they don’t have the Olympic silver medal points of their higher-ranked teammates (Schmidt, Ocik and Jakschik). But their World Championship titles from 2017 and 2018 combined with the World Cup wins from this year and the World Best Time give them enough points to reach the Top 10. Wimberger and Planer win the tiebreak having started their international rowing careers in 2008, while Johannesen and Weissenfeld both started in 2011.Felix's bio. Maximilian's bio. Torben's bio. Johannes' bio.
Top 10 Women
1. Emily Regan (USA)
Regan jumped two places up in the Top 10 ranking after finishing third on the list in 2017. This is thanks to the World Championship gold medal for the US women’s eight at the 2018 World Rowing Championships. Regan gained World Championship titles in 2013 and 2015 as well as Olympic gold in 2016. She also was part of the crew that set the World Best Time in this boat class (set in 2013). These impressive finishes gave her enough points to top the list without having a World Cup win in 2018. Regan has been competing internationally since 2010. Emily's bio.
2. Nicole Beukers (The Netherlands)
Beukers remains in second on the Top 10 list for two years running on the back of her success in the women’s quadruple sculls. The Dutch women’s quad had a roller coaster of a season in 2018, but they were consistently on the podium, including a bronze medal at the World Rowing Championships. This piggybacks on their 2017 World Championship title and their 2016 Olympic silver medal. Beukers has been a staple in this boat since their 2015 World Championship bronze medal. She first competed internally in 2007 at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships. Nicole Beukers’ bio.
3. Agnieszka Kobus-Zawojska (Poland)
Kobus-Zawojska earned her way into the Top 10 via the Polish women’s quadruple sculls. This boat finished the 2018 season with an incredible race in Plovdiv to beat the Germans and the Dutch to the line. Kobus-Zawojska also holds a silver medal from the 2017 World Rowing Championships and a bronze from the 2016 Rio Olympics. She outranks her fellow crewmate Maria Springwald because she first competed internationally in 2008. Agnieszka's bio.
4. Ilse Paulis (The Netherlands)
After taking the 2017 season off rowing, Paulis has come back strong. With her new partner Marieke Keijser, Paulis earned World Cup gold medals in 2018 and finished with a bronze medal at the World Championships. Adding to her point count was her 2016 Olympic gold medal won together with Maaike Head. Paulis and Head also hold the World Best Time in this category, which they set back in 2016. Paulis first competed internationally in 2010, giving her a slight edge over others ranked in the Top 10. Ilse's bio.
5. Maria Springwald (Poland)
Springwald has followed the same trajectory as teammate Kobus-Zawojska, winning the 2018 World Championships in the women’s quad and building upon their silver medal at the 2017 World Championships and bronze at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Springwald began her international career in 2012, ranking her just slightly lower than Kobus-Zawojska. Maria's bio.
6. Grace Prendergast (New Zealand)
Prendergast and pair partner Kerri Gowler (ranked number 9) have posted impressive results in the last three years to earn them enough points to rank in the Top 10. The pair won silver at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games behind Great Britain. They went on to set a new World Best Time in 2017 at the second World Cup before winning the 2017 World Championship title. This year, they faced new competition from an incredibly fast Canadian crew. Prendergast and Gowler raced courageously and took silver. Prendergast began rowing internationally in 2010. Grace's bio.
=7. Gianina-Elena Beleaga (Romania)
=7. Ionela-Livia Cozmiuc (Romania)
Beleaga and Cozmiuc shot to the top with standout performances in the lightweight women’s double sculls. Beleaga had an 8th place finish at the 2016 Olympic Games, but with new partner Cozmiuc, the duo found incredible speed during the 2017 season. They finished with the World Championship title in 2017. In 2018, they struggled to find speed early in the season, landing them off the podium a couple of times. After a fourth place finish at the European Championships, they came back to take another World Championship title in Plovdiv. Both Beleaga and Cozmiuc competed internationally for the first time in 2012. Giannina-Elena's bio. Ionela-Livia's bio.
9. Kerri Gowler (New Zealand)
Kerri Gowler makes up the second half of the New Zealand pair with partner Grace Prendergast (ranked number 6). Gowler scores the same number of points as Prendergast having earned the same results. However, in the tiebreak, she falls behind Prendergast and the Romanian women because she started her international rowing career only in 2013. Kerry's bio.
10. Hillary Janssens (Canada)
Janssens snuck into the Top 10 women with an all-star performance in the women’s pair in 2018. Janssens comes out of the Canadian eight that finished second at the 2017 World Championships. She paired up with Caleigh Filmer and together the duo found unmatched speed. In their first season together, they toppled the reigning World Champions from New Zealand to take the world title. In Plovdiv they were not far off the World Best Time. Janssens also earned points through a World Cup win in 2018. Hillary's bio.
The Top 10 ranking uses a formula that takes into account current year results, as well as results from the previous two years. Points are allocated according to results, World Best Time ownership and also based on the length of time each rower has competed internationally. To view a detailed explanation of the formula, click here.