The fastest man of the day was Russia’s Alexander Vyazovkin in the open men’s 2000m. Finishing in a time of 5:43.5 (less than eight seconds outside of the World Record), Vyazovkin had a great race against Swiss national rower Barnabe Delarze who came in second in a time of 5:45.2. France’s Matthieu Androdias – also a national team member – was third with 5:47.5. Vyazovkin raced at the 2019 World Rowing Under 23 Championships where he finished sixth in men’s single sculls.

Olena Buryak of Ukraine successfully defended her title in the open women’s race. Racing on her 32nd birthday, Buryak was hoping to better her World Record time of 6:22.8, but today was not the day with a 6:31.7 recorded at the end of the race. Buryak had a very handy lead over the rest of the field leaving Helene Lefebvre and Elodie Ravera of France to fight it out for second. Lefebvre got the better of Ravera by less than a second at the line to take silver in a time of 6:46.6. Lefebvre and Ravera know each other well as they race in the women’s double sculls together for the French national team. The duo recently finished sixth at the 2019 World Rowing Championships.

Olena Buryak, Ukraine, Open Women’s World Champion:
"I’m not super happy with the result but I’m happy to be first."

There was full crowd support for the lightweight men’s race with local hero and 2016 Olympic Champion Pierre Houin racing. Houin did the crowd proud by wining the race in a very good time of 6:06.5. This was just under four seconds ahead of Thibault Colard of Fance with indoor rowing 2020 European Champion, Martino Goretti of Italy taking third.

Pierre Houin, France, lightweight men’s World Champion:
"It was a good race. It’s very different from the on-water competition because you are both looking at the numbers on the screen and your competitors beside you. It was a great event to be at!"

It was a tight race for the women’s under-23 2000m. France managed to go one-two with Margaux Bailleul taking gold in a time of 6:49.9 followed by Adele Brosse who recorded a 6:53.0. Great Britain’s Elisabeth Lowke was right on Brosse’s tail taking bronze in a time of 6:54.4.

Margaux Bailleul, France, women’s under-23 World Champion:
"I was so focused on that race from the start. I got out in front towards the end which was the goal."

Poland’s Klaudia Pankratiew was the winner in the lightweight women’s under-23 race. Pankratiew held off France’s Claire Bove to finish in a time of 7:15.4. Bove was just over two seconds back and nicely ahead of bronze medallist Maella Favrais of France. Bove raced last year at the World Rowing Championships in the lightweight women’s double where she finished fifth. This qualified the boat for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and Bove is currently working towards being part of the French Olympic team.

In the 500m World Championship races yesterday, Ward Lemmelijn of Belgium took gold. Today he raced in the men’s under-23 2000m race and in a stunning performance of power and strength, Lemmelijn won his second gold of this World Championships. This meant that Lemmelijn successfully defended his 2019 title in this race finishing in 5:48.3. Denmark wrapped up the silver and bronze spots with Magnus Zier taking silver in a time of 6:00.7 and Magnus Valbirk was the bronze medallist in 6:03.5.

Ward Lemmelijn, Belgium, men’s under-23 World Champion:
"I had a good race today. This race was 2 seconds faster than last year, and I think that’s because with my coach we really worked on the first 1000m this past year."

The junior women’s 2000m was won by Alexandra Foester of Germany in one of the closest races of the day. Foester finished just 0.5 of a second ahead of Lou-Anne Caniard of France by recording a time of 6:51.3. Foester is the reigning on-water World Champion in the junior women’s single sculls while Caniard raced at the 2019 World Rowing Junior Championships in the women’s coxed four. In third was Kateryna Ustinzhanina of Ukraine who finished in 6:57.1.

Alexandra Foester, junior women’s World Champion:
"We were so close the last 500 with Lou-Anne (Caniard). The first half of that last 500 I didn’t think I could do it, but I pulled ahead the last 250!"

For the junior men Leo Muiste of Estonia had an incredibly tight race with Mekhrojbek Mamatkulov of Uzbekistan. At the line just 0.6 of a second separated them with Muiste just in front. Muiste’s time was 6:02. Coming through in third was Victor El Kholti of France who recorded 6:08.1.


The men’s PR3 winner was Lorenzo Bernard of Italy in a time of 6:11.0 This was ahead of Remy Taranto of France with last year’s World Champion, Sean Gaffney of Great Britain coming in third. Corne de Koning of the Netherlands took away gold in the men’s PR2 in a time of 6:56.4. Italy’s Gian Filippo Mirabile was second recording 7:03.2. Alberto Quagliato of Italy took home the bronze medal. The men’s PR1 went to Pascal Daniere of France who recorded 7:57.6 ahead of Zsolt Peto of Hungary.

The stars of the para races turned out to be two French women. Nathalie Benoit is an on-water international medallist and she not only won the women’s PR1, but she also set a new World Record. Benoit’s time was 8:51.8 and it gave her an easy win over Germany’s Sylvia Pille-Steppat who in turn had an easy silver over Clair Franson of France.

Also setting a new World Record was Perle Bouge in the women’s PR2. Bouge’s time was an awesome 8:03.2 and this put her well ahead of Elise Marc of France who recorded 8:14.0. Taking home the bronze was Annika van der Meer of the Netherlands. Both Bouge and van der Meer are both on their country’s national rowing teams.

The women’s PR3 had Kate Jones of Great Britain taking gold ahead of Greta Muti of Italy. These two rowers were separated by less than three seconds with Valentina Zhagot of Russia in third.

Masters racing

A full selection of racing in the masters events included age groups from 30 years old right through to 90+. Here is a selection of the racing.

A French hattrick in the men’s 30-39 race had Dorian Mortelette score 6:01.4 ahead of Romain Delachaume with 6:04.4 and Pierre D’Agata at 6:05.9. For the lightweight men’s 30-39 year old race Sebastian Kleinsorgen of Germany was the quickest in a very close race that saw less than two seconds separating the three medallists. Alonso Damian of Spain was second and Nathan O’Reilly of Great Britain took third. The time range 6:26.1 to 6:28.4.

Pavel Shurmei of Belarus is a regular on the indoor rowing circuit and with the fastest woman in the world, Olena Buryak as your wife, you have a lot to prove. Shurmei missed gold yesterday by only 0.6 seconds over the 500m race. Today Shurmei won the men’s 40-49 year old race in front of South Africa's Luke Wollenschlaeger. Shurmei’s time was 6:05.2. France's Raphael Ruban was third.

Matthias Schoemann-Finck from Germany rowed for many years on his country’s national team and today he came to indoor rowing to win the lightweight men’s 40-49 year old race. Schoemann-Finck won gold medal in a brilliant 6:30.3 ahead of four French rowers.

For the women’s 30-39 year old race, Germany finished in the top two spots with Anna Muehle finishing just ahead of Nina Thoelking in a time of 6:51.6. France’s Marie Le Nepvou took third. The lightweight women of this same age group had Sarita Kristina Hansen from Denmark taking the gold in a time of 7:26.5. This came after Hansen took silver in yesterday’s 500m championship race. France finished second and third with Veronique Couvreur just ahead of Sophie Dubocage.

What a difference a distance can make. In the women’s 40-49 year old race over 500m yesterday Georgia Peramatzi of Greece was first. Today Peramatzi finished sixth with Sweden's Malin Wahnstrom Sundstrom, winning. Tiina Kapten of Estonia was second.

The lightweight men’s 50-54 year old race there was no doubt about the winner. It was Germany’s Klaus Bischof who finished well out in front with a time of 6:28.9. In the women’s lightweight race of the same age group, the very accomplished and very medalled indoor rower, Justine Reston from Great Britain had a very tough race with Armelle Hosquet from France. The two were close for the whole race with Reston managing to win in a time of 7:23.5 over Hosquet’s time of 7:26.1.  

The oldest competitor at the World Rowing Indoor Championships was Georges Basse of France. Racing by himself in the men’s 90-94 year old category, Basse recorded a time of 11:11.7

Georges Basse, France, men’s 90-94:
"I still row, mainly to stay in shape. It’s also because I’m a little big-headed. I was head of a company for many years, and in a sense that was like rowing."

The day ended up with mixed relay racing.
For anything that you missed watch again here.