Five U.S. Crews Advance During Thursday Morning Heats in Trakai

TRAKAI, Lithuania — Two United States crews will race for medals Sunday following qualification in today’s heats at the 2017 World Rowing Junior Championships. The men’s four with coxswain won its heat, while the men’s eight finished second to advance to the A final.

With four of the five athletes racing on their first national team, the men’s four with coxswain of Ryan Williams (Wakefield, Mass.), Oliver Babb (Atlanta, Ga.), Clay Watson (Palo Alto, Calif.), Peter Chatain (Winnetka, Ill.) and Clark Dean (Sarasota, Fla.) got off the line first, taking a nearly two-second lead over Germany. The U.S. continued to hold the lead throughout the race, crossing the line first in a time of 6:24.76 and safely securing their place in the final.

“We had a rough starting sequence, but once we got into our high strokes, we pulled away quickly. From then on, it was nice to hold control of the race,” said Chatain. “We were happy to represent the U.S. well.”

Dean, the veteran of the crew, is doubling in two events at the championships. He won his heat in the men’s single sculls yesterday to advance to the quarterfinals.

Also qualifying for the A final was the U.S. men’s eight. The men charged the course bowball-to-bowball with the German eight. In a final sprint, the stroke rate increased to 40 strokes per minute, as the U.S. crossed the line just 0.68 seconds behind Germany for a second-place finish in 5:48.72.

The crew features coxswain Sydney Edwards (Sarasota, Fla.), Trey Holterman (Hillsborough, Calif.), Chase Barrows (Everett, Wash.), Nolan Parks (Seattle, Wash.), Harrison Burke (Westport, Conn.), Spencer Brennessel (San Francisco, Calif.), Nikita Lilichenko (Orinda, Calif.), Christian Tabash (Vienna, Va.) and Spencer Dettlinger (Alamo, Calif.).

Three other crews earned qualification to the semifinals, while four will have to race in Friday’s repechages for their chance to advance to the A finals.

Qualifying to Semifinals

The U.S. women’s four led the morning off with success, qualifying for the semifinals. The crew of Kelsey McGinley (Westport, Conn.), Riley Lynch (Vashon, Wash.), Kaitlyn Kynast (Ridgefield, Conn.) and Rose Carr (Newark, Del.) picked up speed through the middle 1,000 meters, putting down the fastest final sprint of the six crews in its heat. The U.S. crossed the line second behind Romania, with a final time of 6:59.57.

The U.S. women’s pair of Kate Burns (Ann Arbor, Mich.) and Kaitlin Knifton (Austin, Texas) also earned a spot in the semifinals. The U.S. edged out South Africa for the third-place and final qualifying position with a time of 7:43.80. Romania won the heat in a time of 7:31.16, with the home crew of Lithuania taking second in 7:40.45.

The top three crews in the third heat of the women’s quadruple sculls all crossed the line in close succession this morning. The U.S. lineup of Anna Matthes (Cambridge, Mass.), Caroline Sharis (Bettendorf, Iowa), Taylor English (La Claire, Iowa) and Kate Miles (Oakland, Calif.) held a strong and consistent second place throughout the race, earning their spot in the semifinal with a time of 6:51.94, roughly two seconds behind the leading crew from The Netherlands, who finished in 6:49.86.

Relegated to Repechages

The U.S. men’s pair of Daniel Stoddard (West Windsor, N.J.) and Andrew Hickey (Yardley, Pa.) finished third in its heat and will now race in a repechage on Friday. New Zealand took the lead from the start and never relinquished it. The U.S. followed second-place Italy across the line, finishing in a time of 7:02.82. Stoddard and Hickey will race on Friday, August 4 at 3:15 a.m. EST against Lithuania, Argentina, South Africa and Armenia. A top-two finish guarantees a spot in the semifinals.

The U.S. men’s four crew of Evan Krum (Orange, Calif.), Harrison Schofield (Sarasota, Fla.), David Slear (Dallas, Texas) and Leif Carlson (Larkspur, Calif.) also finished third in its heat and will be racing in the repechages. The U.S. clocked a time of 6:27.45 and will race again tomorrow at 3:48 a.m. EST, against Chile, Canada and China, with the top two finishers advancing to semifinals.

Joining them in the repechages will be the U.S. men’s quadruple sculls crew of Emory Sammons (Fort Plain, N.Y.), James Wright (Philadelphia, Pa.), Liam Galloway (Ridgefield, Conn.) and Gus Rodriguez (Rye, N.Y.). With only the top two progressing to semifinals, the U.S. fell short, finishing in fourth place with a time of 6:19.78. They will have another chance to make the semifinal in tomorrow’s repechage at 4:18 a.m. EST, against Norway, Estonia, Poland, Russia and Austria.

The final U.S. crew to be relegated to the repechages was the women’s eight. The U.S. crossed the line fourth with a time of 6:42.62. Germany and Czech Republic qualified directly to the A final.

The crew is made up of coxswain Aparajita Chauhan (Seattle, Wash.), Julia Braz (Sarasota, Fla.), Azja Czajkowski (Chula Vista, Calif.), Katryna Niva (Davis, Calif.), Fran Raggi (Winter Park, Fla.), Christiana Congdon (Concord, N.H.), Teal Cohen (Dallas, Texas), Jenna Van De Grift (San Diego, Calif.) and Miranda Nykolyn (Huntington, N.Y.).

A top-two finish in tomorrow’s repechage will guarantee a lane in the A final. The U.S. will race at 5:21 a.m. EST, against Italy, Belarus, Russia and Australia.

Racing for U.S. crews will continue Friday, August 4, with quarterfinals in the men’s and women’s single and double sculls, as well as repechages in the men’s pair, men’s four, men’s quadruple sculls and women’s eight.

Live audio commentary and live race tracker will be available for all races on www.worldrowing.com. There will not be video streaming available for this event.

Complete press coverage, athlete bios and links to event information can be found at www.usrowing.org and www.worldrowing.com. Follow along with the U.S. Under 19 National Team using hashtags #WRJChamps and #TrekToTrakai.

Click here to view the 2017 World Rowing Junior Championships Press Kit.

U.S. Racing Schedule for Friday, August 4 (all times EST)

  • 3:15 a.m. – Men’s pair repechage – Top two to semifinal
  • 3:48 a.m. – Men’s four repechage – Top two to semifinal
  • 4:18 a.m. – Men’s quadruple sculls repechage – Top three to semifinal
  • 4:36 a.m. – Men’s double sculls quarterfinal – Top three to semifinal
  • 5:12 a.m. – Women’s eight repechage – Top two to final
  • 5:27 a.m. – Men’s single sculls quarterfinal – Top three to semifinal
  • 5:54 a.m. – Women’s single sculls quarterfinal – Top three to semifinal
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