Women’s Single Sculls (W1x) – Olympic Final
World Champion Kimberly Brennan of Australia went storming out in this Olympic final. Her pace was so intense that she had gained a clear water lead with just 500m rowed. China’s world bronze medallist, Jingli Duan followed in second. Then Genevra Stone of the United States did a push and got ahead of Duan. The American was flying. Brennan had taken advantage of her early lead and remained in front. Where was 2014 World Champion Emma Twigg of New Zealand? Twigg had been sitting back in fourth and now began to close on Duan. All of the crews were now flying to the finish and Brennan was holding her early pace.
The Australian won and scored the first gold ever in this boat class for Australia. Brennan is the fastest woman single sculler in the world. Stone held on to second with Duan getting third.
Results: AUS, USA, CHN, NZL, SUI, AUT
Kim BRENNAN (AUS) – gold
“I don’t know how I feel, I have imagined it so many times. I put so much work in the past 11 years, it was a great journey with my teammates and my coach. My husband has a gold medal, I needed mine. I look forward to celebrating that with him.”
Gevvie STONE (USA) - silver
“I don’t know you can do a 2k and have it not hurt, but it hurt way more than I expected. Once I was at the 1250m I knew I was in a good position. It means everything to me. So many years of hard work. My dad is my coach, my mom rowed too. Everyone has helped me along the way.”
Jingli DUAN (CHN) – bronze
“I feel very excited, but also very surprised to win a medal.”
What a stacked B-final! The 1996 and 2000 Olympic Champion from the single, Ekaterina Karsten of Belarus was there. So were the gold and silver medallists from London – Mirka Knapkova of the Czech Republic and Fie Udby Erichsen of Denmark. At the start Erichsen had the lead with Knapkova following closely. The 44-year-old Karsten was in third. This is Karsten’s seventh Olympics and she comes in as twice the age of Kenia Lechuga Alanis of Mexico who is having a terrific Olympic Games. Karsten then began to close on Erichsen and Knapkova and coming into the last 400m there was nothing in it between the top three crews.
An awesome closing sprint by Knapkova got her to the line first in a time just four seconds outside of the Olympic Best Time. Karsten pulled through to second. Also a fabulous result for Zimbabwe’s Micheen Thornycroft who finished in a time of 7:30 and for Lechuga the lightweight in a time of 7:40.
Results: CZE, BLR, DEN, CAN, ZIM, MEX