July 23, 2009
RACICE, Czech Republic - The Under-23 World Rowing Championships got underway Thursday, with 13 Huskies competing for five national teams.
Storms threatening the area forced the race schedule to be condensed Thursday. Temperatures were hot and the water was flat to start the day, according to a report from Racice.
Rowing for Germany, Tom Lehmann and Mathis Jessen placed second in their heat of the straight pair, qualifying them for the semifinal to be held Saturday. The pair, both members of the undefeated Pac-10 and national champion 2009 freshman eight, finished the course in 6:47.13, less than one second behind heat-winner Serbia.
Will Crothers, Anthony Jacob, Max Lang and Conlin McCabe won their heat of the men's straight four, putting Team Canada in the semifinal of that event. The four Huskies raced to a 6:10.43 finish, about a length ahead of Team USA. Crothers, Jacob and Lang were members of the 2009 national champion varsity eight, while McCabe sat six-seat in the undefeated national champion freshman eight.
Rising junior Hans Struzyna rowed in the fourth heat of quadruple scull for the United States, helping the crew to a third-place finish in the event. The quad crossed the finish in 6:18.84 and will compete in the repechage Friday, facing Hungary, Egypt, Russia and Latvia. France and Switzerland placed first and second in the heat, respectively. Struzyna was a member of the 2009 national champion varsity eight, one of just two sophomores in the top boat.
In the women's eight, Kim Kennedy, Kira O'Sullivan and Rosie DeBoef competed for Canada, racing to a second place finish in the first heat. The Canadians finished in 6:44.92, about a length behind heat winner Great Britain. Kennedy was a member of the varsity eight in 2009 and DeBoef raced in the second varsity, which placed fifth at the 2009 NCAA Division I Rowing Championships. O'Sullivan spent the 2009 season in the varsity four, earning bronze at the Pac-10 Championships. The second-place finish sends the Canadian crew to the repechage race slated for Friday, where they will face Ukraine, Germany, Poland and Belarus.
Rising senior Adrienne Martelli rowed for team USA in the second heat of the women's eight. She and the crew won the heat, finishing in 6:33.68, over eight seconds ahead of second-place Poland. Martelli, a CRCA All-American and member of the 2009 varsity boat, will move straight to the final scheduled for Sunday. The American boat posted the fastest qualifying time of any women's eight.
The first heat of the men's eight saw Stephen Connolly race for team Canada. Connolly and the Canadian crew finished first in their heat (5:47.45), two seconds ahead of the second-place crew from Great Britain. Connolly, a member of the 2009 Pac-10 and national champion second varsity eight, will join his boat in the final race on Sunday.
In the second heat, Blaise Didier rowed with the United States to a third-place finish, crossing the line in 5:52.56, about six seconds behind heat winner Germany and four-plus seconds behind Poland. Didier was a member of the 2009 Pac-10 and national champion second varsity eight and won gold for the US last summer in the 2008 U23 World Championships. Didier will compete in the repechage Friday, facing Italy, Australia, Estonia and Russia.
Complete results and live updates are available by clicking here.