Olympics: Katherine Grainger and Heather Stanning underline credentials
There were gold medals for Scotland’s Katherine Grainger in double sculls and Heather Stanning in women’s pairs as the GB squad took three gold medals from the last Rowing World Cup of the season.
These wins now make both these crews – Grainger and double sculls partner Anna Watkins, as well as Stanning and pairs partner Helen Glover – clear favourites for Olympic gold.
For the first time this season, Grainger and Watkins faced the very real threat of world silver medallists Australia, who had posted a much faster time in their qualifying heat. However, the British duo dominated the final from the first stroke, using a fast start to secure an early lead.
Australia challenged time and again but, each time, Grainger and Watkins provided an answer before, at 1500 metres gone, they raised the power and moved a length ahead – a lead they kept all the way to the line, leaving Australia in second place and 2009 world champions Poland, third. However, with their performance, Australia showed that they will be real rivals for gold in London.
Afterwards, Watkins said: “That was a cracking race. The ones where you are pushed are always the most satisfying.”
Grainger added: “We have raced everyone now that we are likely to face at the Games. Now, Paul Thompson, our coach, will lead us through our final preparations for London”.
If anything, Lossiemouth’s Heather Stanning and Helen Glover were in even more control of their coxless pairs final, leaving current world champions New Zealand and double Olympic champions Romania in their wake.
On this form, the others will know that they are racing for silver in London.
Britain’s other gold medal came in the lightweight men’s fours, while silvers were won by the men’s eight and the men’s four, who lost out to Australia while Alan Campbell in single sculls, the women’s quad and the women’s eight all took bronze.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 4 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 17 mph
Wind direction: North east