This first A-Final for the men here at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships featured the youngest participant of this regatta. Alberto Natali, the cox from Italy, is only 14 years old.

New Zealand won silver last year in this boat class, and their cox, Sam Bosworth, helped the 2014 crew reach the podium. He is back this year, and with so much positive experience behind him, he steered his boat ahead of the field from the outset of the race.

Italy, in second, began putting on the pressure after passing the half-way mark, gradually overlapping and then steadily taking over the New Zealanders. In third it was Australia, with Turkey, in fourth, not giving the Aussies any peace of mind.

With 500m left to go, the Turkish crew had left Australia in their wake, and the Aussies began losing speed and falling to the back of the field. Italy continued storming ahead, with New Zealand chasing hard. In the final strokes, Germany came out of nowhere, moving up from sixth at the half-way mark to surprise Turkey and finish five tenths of a second ahead.

The Italian cox will be the youngest participant with a gold medal here at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships. New Zealand take another silver, and Germany bronze.


Niccolo Pagani (2) – ITA – Gold

“It’s my third World Champion title. This one is special as it is my first Under- 23 event and it was a very good race. It was a big fight against New Zealand and we are really a great team.“

Louis Van Velthooven (s) – NZL – Silver  

“It’s great to be on the podium. We didn’t manage to win, but we are very proud. Itw as a wonderful race, we were gaining and gaining but it was just not enough.”

Marc Leske (s) – GER- Bronze

“In the last meters the cox shouted that we had to take every risk and give everything. WE had to fight until the end and actually I had no idea where we were but we managed to take this bronze medal.”


B- Final

Three boats lined up in the B-Final of the men’s coxed four: Ukraine, in lane one, Belarus, in lane two, and France in lane three. Ukraine took an early lead, with France on their tails. By the half-way mark, France had moved up to row ahead of the field lead and Ukraine fell back into second. Belarus then decided to make their move, moving up and overtaking Ukraine. With 500m to go, France still had a boat length ahead of the field, with Belarus and Ukraine following. France stayed ahead until the line and finished seventh overall.

Results: UKR, BLR, FRA