Rough Wednesday: the USA Juniors had a bumpy opening to the Jr. Worlds
US Juniors crews suffered through a sub-par opening to the Junior World Championships in Duisburg today, while crews from Eastern Europe held a boat parade in the morning heats. In tail wind conditions, crews from Byelorussia and Bulgaria made an early statement that rowing is growing in eastern Europe.
In her opening heat, USA JW1x Susan BeVille made a game challenge to the leaders early on, before losing contact to the field. Hungary's Lidia Veroci claimed the heat while BeVille finished in 5th and will row the repechage on Thursday.
USA JM1x sculler Owen Pope fared slightly better in his heat, but had the misfortune of facing a fired-up Matthew Langridge from the GB. Langridge dashed a full 6 seconds clear of the field in the first 500 meters, leaving the pack to fight it out for the finishing order behind him. USA's Pope whittled his margin to Langridge down to 11 seconds at the finish (after being down a whopping 14 in the first quarter), and will also race in the reps tomorrow.
The US Junior women's pair of Alexis Peterson and Amanda Kendrick may have been suffering from shell shock a bit after lining up with Germany, Byelorussia, Romania and Russia for their opening heat. Peterson and Kendrick were off the pace early in this one, and will hope to regroup on Thursday.
In a bit of a surprise, the defending Junior World Champion USA Junior women's 4- was caught and rowed through in the first 500 by--you guessed it--a very strong crew from Byelorussia. The US girls extended their challenge into the second quarter of the race, then shut down to conserve energy for the inevitable repechage.
Six more US crews are in action on Wednesday afternoon, including the Junior Men's and Women's Eights.