5 August 2021
The World Rowing Junior Championships, for under-19 rowers, are back on track after having been cancelled last year due to the pandemic. Nearly 600 athletes from 43 nations are heading to Plovdiv, Bulgaria, for the championships that will take place between 11 and 15 August.
Three countries, Germany, the USA and Italy, are entering in all of the 14 boat classes. Germany topped the medals table in 2019 and are again aiming for the top spot.
Normally, it is the single sculls classes that have the most entries, but this year it is the women’s double sculls with 23 boats. The Netherlands will try to repeat its victory from 2019, now with Lotte van Westreenen and Phaedra van der Molen. In 2019, Lotte’s older sister, Fien van Westreenen, took the gold in the double. The Dutch double will meet Lithuania, bronze medallist in 2019. In the Slovenian crew is Ruby Cop, daughter of the Olympian champion Iztok Cop. Ruby Cop racing with Jana Dremeij.
In 2019, Germany, Italy and Russia medalled in the men’s quadruple sculls, which this year has attracted 22 nations. All three countries are back at Plovdiv to try to take medals.
Twenty-one men will be racing in the single sculls. Eyes will be on Issiah Harrison, debutant in the U.S. national team, who has had great success in indoor rowing. Let’s see if he equally handy on the water. In the men’s single sculls are athletes from Europe but also Latin America and Africa.
Aurelia-Maxima Janzen of Switzerland, silver medallist in the single sculls at the 2021 World Rowing Under-23 Championships, is racing at the Juniors, as is Italy’s Ciulia Clerici, who took a bronze in the eights at the 2019 World Rowing Junior Championships. This time Clerici will be trying her luck in the single sculls.
To race at the Junior Championships, World Rowing writes in an article on its website, the rowers
must be 18 years of age or under. A rower can compete as a junior until 31 December of the year in which he or she reaches the age of 18; after that date the rower advances to the under-23 category.