Romania tops medal table at European Under-23 Championships
In its second edition, the European Rowing Under 23 Championships saw 550 athletes from 22 nations compete from 1-2 September in Brest, Belarus. Romania picked up an impressive eight gold medals, putting them in a league of their own.
They were followed by Greece, with five gold medals, one silver and one bronze and Germany, with four gold medals and three bronze. The host nation of Belarus also scored one gold, six silver and one bronze.
Belarus’ success started in the first final when the host nation won the coxed women’s four ahead of Ukraine. However, the Romanian national anthem was quick to follow when Romania won the first of their eight gold medals in the coxed men’s four. Romania then went on to win every openweight men’s sweep event, including the men’s pair, four and eight. Historically successful in women’s sweep rowing, Romania then picked up two more gold medals in the women’s quad and women’s double.
Greece scored big in the lightweight doubles, winning both the men’s and women’s categories, while Germany did the same in the lightweight men’s and women’s quadruple sculls.
The highly anticipated blue riband events saw Desislava Georgieva of Bulgaria top the medal table in the women’s single sculls. Georgieva finished third earlier this season at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships. In the men’s single sculls, Mihai Chiruta from Romania had an incredible sprint finish to pip Lithuania’s Giedrius Bieliauskas at the line by just 0.5 of a second.
Russia took their only gold medal of the weekend in the women’s eight with a three-second lead over the Czech Republic. The final event of the championships, the men’s eight, was won by Romania with a secure margin ahead of Belarus.
The event took place on the rowing course in Brest, Belarus. This course was reopened in 2007 after major construction took place and several sport facilities were built. The course has held several international regattas, including the 2009 European Championships and the 2010 World Rowing Under 23 Championships.
“The rowing channel in Brest is one of the best in the world, and we were pleased to come here. There is a wonderful sports infrastructure, an excellent organising committee, good people and a fantastic atmosphere,” says European Management Board Chair Ryszard Stadniuk.
The European Rowing Under 23 Championships first took place in 2017. The event aims at expanding the rowing calendar for young rowers and providing more events at the under-23 level. The 2019 European Rowing Under 23 Championships will take place in Ioannina, Greece from 7-8 September.
For full results from this year’s event, click here.