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Callum wins Gold at European U23 Championships

Twickenham’s Callum Dixon and Nathan Hull won gold in the Men’s Double on Sunday, beating Greece and Belarus to second and third place. The fifth European Rowing U23 Championships were held this weekend in Kruszwica, Poland featured entries from 30 European countries. Having topped the medal table at the 2020 European Rowing U23 Championships, Italy was looking to maintain its position and arrived with a strong team having entered 16 of the 22 boat classes. It was clear that they were going to face tough opposition from Romania which had 15 boats entered. As expected from the earlier heats, Greece and Great Britain established the early lead. The Greek duo have a lot of pedigree in this category but it was the British double of Dixon and Hull who took a marginal lead 500m into the race, with Belarus in third place. By halfway, Great Britain had extended their lead to almost two seconds over Greece with Belarus continuing to sit in bronze medal position. In the third quarter, Moldova put on a big push to try and close the gap to Belarus. With Great Britain looking very relaxed at 1,500m, Greece was starting to look tired, and the British were extending their lead. The positions remained unchanged the finish with Great Britain taking their first gold of the Championships.

It was a fantastic result for Callum, especially so after the earlier disappointment of missing out on the U23 World Championships due to Covid isolation. In other results Romania’s rowers made their intentions clear from the start taking an impressive gold in the women’s coxed four. However, Italy responded in the second final with gold in the men’s coxed four. The two nations matched each other’s gold medal tally at four each until the women’s eight when Romania took a convincing gold, finishing over ten seconds ahead of Germany. The victory was even more impressive as the crew was stroked by Tokyo 2020 Olympian Simona Radis who had won gold in the women’s single sculls less than two hours earlier.

It was a notable spread of European U23 Champions as eleven other nations picked up gold medals. Bulgaria took home two gold medals with World U23 Bronze medallist Lazar Penev winning the lightweight men’s single sculls and Emil Neykov matching his World U23 gold with the European men’s single sculls. Great Britain’s rowers picked up two golds in the final three events at the regatta; the men’s double and the men’s eight. Overall, 19 out of the 30 participating nations took home medals.

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