Russia had a powerful race in the heats two days ago and qualified for the finals with the fastest time. Could they do it again today when up against the European Champions, Romania. Romania has won this boat class ever since the European Championships were reinstated in 2007, but they were sitting in third after 500m had been rowed. Instead it was Russia who took a flying start and gained a solid lead. 

At the half way point Russia's lead had been diminished by the Dutch crew with Romania now completely outside of the medals. Russia and the Netherlands went into the final sprint as the two top crews with Great Britain still on the pace. The Russians finished fifth at last year's World Rowing Championships indicating that they had a crew with speed and this race was confirming it. In the final sprint Russia held off the young Dutch crew to cross the line in first. Russia had broken Romania's eight year winning streak. The Netherlands took silver and Romania managed to get onto the medals podium by overtaking Great Britain to take bronze. 

Results: RUS, NED, ROU, GER, GBR, BLR

Julia Popova (RUS) – Gold

I feel so satisfied. We row and train very hard. Until the last second you don’ t know what can happen in the race. I just look at the stroke and do what she does.

Wianka Van Dorp (NED) – Silver  

We have a really young crew. I am one of the most experienced and it is just great to be with these young girls. As the European Championships is the first chance to the see the level, it is great to see where we are.

Andreea Boghian (ROU) – Bronze

The water was good, but we weren’t on our best form. We really wanted to win here, we have to train better at home to be the best in Europe and to get a medal at the World Championships.