Who to Watch: 2020 World Rowing Indoor Championships
The 2020 World Rowing Indoor Championships is set to get underway on the 7-8 February in Paris with a record number of countries competing. More than 2300 athletes from 51 countries will test their winter speed. Here is who you should watch out for over the two days.
In the open women’s 2000m event, the reigning World Champion and World Record holder Olena Buryak of Ukraine is back. Buryak will be looking to best her own record, currently standing at 6:22.8. At last year’s indoor championships she finished in a time of 6:25.6, breaking her own record in the 30-39 category. Buryak will be joined by 34 other athletes also looking to put down top times. France has entered their national team, including top rowers Helene Lefebvre and Elodie Ravera-Scaramozzino.
The open men’s 2000m race will also be an exciting event. Watch out for Switzerland’s Barnabe Delarze. He has several Swiss national indoor titles under his belt and might just be aiming to break the 5:40 mark. Delarze currently holds the on-water silver medal in the men’s double sculls. But he is up against the entire French national team, including top rowers Hugo Bucheron and Matthieu Androdias. And keep an eye on the Polish Maciej Zawojski. He has seen mixed on-water results, but claims a few world cup medals in his arsenal.
The para-rowing events have drawn some top names. The Netherlands’ Corne de Koning will compete in the para PR2 men’s 2000m event. He is likely to be challenged by top French para-rower, Stephane Tardieu. Tardieu competed back in the 2016 Paralympic Games, finishing third together with partner Perle Bouge.
Bouge will be competing in the PR2 women’s 2000m event and is definitely a medal contender. Her biggest challenger is likely to be Annika van der Meer of the Netherlands. Van der Meer finished second in the on-water PR2 single sculls at the World Championships and first in the PR2 double together with de Koning.
The para PR1 men’s event sees the return of Hungarian Peto Zsolt. Zsolt recently finished first at the European Rowing Indoor Championships and is looking to claim the title again. In the para PR1 women’s event keep an eye on France’s Nathalie Benoit. She recently finished second at the on-water World Rowing Championships.
And watch out for Sean Gaffney of Great Britain in the men’s para PR3 race. Gaffney stormed onto the scene a few years ago and currently holds the World Record in the 40-49 category at 6:24.6.
In the lightweight men’s 2000m watch out for the reigning European Rowing Indoor Champion Martino Goretti of Italy. Goretti is continuing on the indoor circuit after he finished first in a time of 6:10.4 at the European Indoor Rowing Championships. Goretti will be challenged by the best of the French national team, including Olympic Champion in the lightweight men’s double sculls, Pierre Houin. And in the lightweight women’s event, the race has drawn a nice international spread, including Olympian Amina Rouba from Algeria.
The packed two days of racing includes masters, juniors and under-23 events. With the event doubling as the French National Indoor Championships, the French team has come out strong. Watch out for the oldest competitor Georges Basse, competing in the 90-94 category.
And finally, don’t forget to watch the 500m sprint championships events. These races will take place at the end of the second day, 8 February, followed by a few mixed relay races. They will be quick and fun, having drawn a great number of entries, including many Crossfit athletes.
The World Rowing Indoor Championships will be live streamed on the World Rowing website: www.worldrowing.com as well as streamed on the World Rowing YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/WorldRowingFISA. The World Rowing website will also have start lists, results, photos and stories.
For entries click here.