Indoor Rowing takes another step forward on the international scene. After the successful Indoor Rowing event at the 2017 World Games last August, next weekend will be the first fully-recognised World Rowing Indoor Championships in Alexandria, Virginia, United States from 17-18 February 2018.
Over 2500 competitors will take part from 33 countries including Great Britain, France, Poland, China, New Zealand and Denmark. There will also be participants from 27 US States, representing 270 clubs and organisations.
The blue ribband events include the open and lightweight men's and women's races. In the open women's race the reigning World Record holder Olena Buryak of Ukraine is the favourite. Buryak used a recent Estonian indoor rowing competition to prepare herself for these indoor championships. Buryak showed that she was on track for a new World Record attempt by setting a new World Record over 1000m at the Estonian competition.
In the open men's category Bela Simon of Hungary will be competing. Simon became a World Champion in 2017 when he raced at the World Rowing Championships in the men's coxed pair. He will be up against Jakub Prdrazil of the Czech Republic. Podrazil is a two-time Olympian in rowing.
All championship events will be over the 2'000m distance and include a range of age categories. The competitors will use Concept2 rowing machines and the founders of Concept2, brothers Peter and Dick Dreissigacker, have shown their endorsement of the event by both competing themselves - Dick in the 70-year-old category and Peter is 66. The oldest competitor is Dean Smith, 91, of the Rocky Mountain Rowing Club, USA. Smith will be up against William Brownlee, 90, also from the United States.
The two days of racing also includes non-championship events of different distances including a marathon and a 30 minute race.
There will be a range of para-rowing events with a total of 85 para-rowers entered in the championship and non-championship races. The biggest number of entries is for junior racing with 1020 competitors.
For more information: http://www.worldrowing.com/events/2018-world-rowing-indoor-championships/event-information