by Luigi Bonaveri MONACO. Saturday October 22nd was full of finals at the 2016 World Rowing Coastal Championships in Monaco. The wind died down over night leaving a flatter race course for the Saturday finallists. The day began with the B-finals which were raced over the same 4km course as the heats. This was followed by the six A-finals raced over a 6km course that added two more important turns. Spain had an outstanding performance and won the overall trophy with a total of 58 points, Italy took second place and France third. In the Men’s Double Sculls (CM2x) Final Monaco took home one medal, a bronze with Giuseppe Alberti (b) and Quentin Antognelli (s), of MON01. It was an incredibly fast start in this race, with the pack of 21 boats vying for the best line to the first buoy. Home favourites and 2015 World Champions MON01 were the first to get there, but not by much. ESP02, ITA02 and the other 18 boats were hot on their tails. Through the middle of the race an incredible battle took place between these top three boats. MON01 was in the lead, then ESP02, then ITA02. Back and forth around each buoy, it was anyone’s race. MON01 caught the 4th buoy with their oar and lost some ground, ESP02 pulled into the lead. Coming around the final buoy, ESP02 grabbed the best course, followed by ITA02 and MON01. The position remained the same across the line. Results: ESP01, ITA02, MON01 . Giuseppe Alberti and Quentin Antognelli said: “We had a good start and we managed to get into the lead in the middle. We were ahead at the 4th buoy, but then we hit it. Coming around the final buoy we thought we were closer to Spain and we could catch them, but we didn’t manage to. It is really cool. Last year we won in Peru, but it was just with our small team. Here, we are in front of everyone, we can celebrate with our friends and family, it is great.” At their first-ever coastal championships, Tunisia took home one medal, a bronze in the women’s double. The final of the Women’s Solo (CW1x) began with a bang in Monaco. Into the final stretch, Ireland’s Monica Dukarska (IRL01) moved ahead and crossed the line to claim the World Championship title ahead of GRE01 and FRA01. Charging for the line in the final of the Women’s Coxed Quadruple Sculls (CW4x), FRA09 took gold, RUS01 silver and ESP02 held on to bronze. What a race it was the final of Men’s Solo (CM1x)! All 21 boats were charging to the first buoy and it brought catastrophe. Coming out of the crash it was PER01 and SWE01 who got away cleanly. What a disaster for the Tunisian rower whose race was over.
From that point, ESP01 managed to hold his lead, while PER01 and SWE01 went back and forth before PER01 solidified his silver medal, leaving the bronze for SWE01. Eighteen boats lined up in the final women’s double Sculls (CW2x), all with the goal of crossing the line first. But no one could stop Italy. it was impossible to let off the pace. Rounding the final turn, FRA01 had a bit more in the tank and pushed past TUN01. DEN01 dropped off the pack leaving the first three to cross the line and take their medals. It was ITA01, FRA01, TUN01. This was the first time Tunisia had ever participated at a World Rowing Coastal Championships. The final race of the day, Men’s Coxed Quadruple Sculls (CM4x+) saw a magnificent startline with 22 men’s coxed quads lining up. This was going to be an intense race. The crews’ number one priority was to avoid crashes that would result in costly penalties. But the entire pack was descending on the first buoy and it looked like absolute chaos. Who would come out on top? It was CZE01. Finally, through the last buoy ITA01 got the better of ITA02. At the line CZE01 claimed gold, ITA01 silver and ITA02 bronze. To the disappointment of the home crowd, MON01 finished outside the medals in fourth.
The three days of the World Rowing Championships concluded with the “Gala Rowing Evening’ in the presence of HSH the Prince Albert II.