Australia’s Erik Horrie continued his World Championships reign in the AS men’s single sculls, winning his third straight title on Thursday (3 September), as the 2015 World Rowing Championships concluded for the para-rowing boat classes in Aiguebelette, France.
The London 2012 silver medallist stayed ahead of British 2008 Paralympic champion Tom Aggar and Ukraine’s Igor Bondar to win the ASM1x in 4:45.55.
“It’s unbelievable to win a third World Rowing Championship title,” Horrie, 35, told RowingAustralia.com. “It’s certainly not something I imagined doing when I first started rowing almost five years ago now.”
“My race went exactly to plan, I knew everyone was going to come out fast and (Thursday) was no different than any other day,” Horrie added. “Everyone had a bit more of a hunger, but I stuck to my race plan that I had worked on with my coach and it paid off at the end of the day.”
The race for second and third was tight, with Aggar nipping Bondar by a hair to take the silver in 4:51.09; Bondar followed up in 4:51.70.
In the AS women’s single sculls (ASW1x) finals, Israel's Moran Samuel showed her victory at the World Cup II in Varese, Italy, was no fluke. Samuel captured her first world title, improving on her silver medal from last year’s World Championships. She held about a two-second lead over Great Britain’s Rachel Morris and Norway’s defending champion Birgit Skarstein, en-route to winning the 1,000m course in 5:25.92.
Morris took silver in 5:27.02, followed by Skarstein in 5:31.94.
Two more medals in para-rowing boat class were at stake on Thursday, which also featured a thrilling finish in the LTA mixed coxed four (LTAMix4+) finals.
The British crew of Grace Clough, Dan Brown, Pamela Relph, James Fox and cox Oliver James managed to retain their crown – but only by two tenths of a second.
The USA – comprised of Jaclyn Smith, Danielle Hansen, Zachary Burns, Richard Vandegrift and cox Jennifer Sichel – got off to a lightning start and had the lead at the 500m mark. But the British caught up, finishing in 3:19.56, to remain unbeaten in this event since 2011.
Canada won the bronze in 3:27.38.
“Truth be told, I didn’t think we’d got it until 15 seconds after the line and Great Britain came up on the screen,” Relph said on BritishRowing.com.
Australia left the World Championships with two golds after also winning the TA mixed double sculls (TAMix2x). Gavin Bellis and Kathryn Ross successfully defended their World Championship title, holding off Great Britain and France, who came in second and third, respectively.
1. Erik Horrie (AUS) (4:45.55)
2. Tom Aggar (GBR) (4:51.09)
3. Igor Bondar (UKR) (4:51.70)
1. Moran Samuel (ISR) (5:25.92)
2. Rachel Morris (GBR) (5:27.02)
3. Birgit Skarstein (NOR) (5:31.94)
1. GBR: Grace Slough, Daniel Brown, Pamela Relph, James Fox, Oliver James (3:19.56)
2. USA: Jaclyn Smith, Danielle Hansen, Zachary Burns, Richard Vandergrift, Jennifer Sichel (3:19.82)
3. CAN: Victoria Nolan, Veronique Boucher, Curtis Halladay, Andrew Todd, Kristen Kit (3:27.38)
1. AUS: Gavin Bellis, Kathryn Ross (4:03.51)
2. GBR: Laurence Whiteley, Lauren Rowles (4:04.03)
3. FRA: Perie Bouge, Stephane Tardieu (4:06.08)
For results, schedules and full race reports on the 2015 World Rowing Championships, visit World Rowing’s website.