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Olympic Hopes Regatta 2021

24 canoe sprint athletes from 11 clubs have represented Great Britain at the 2021 Olympic Hopes Regatta, taking place over three days at Racice in the Czech Republic.

The regatta is a significant event for under 15, under 16 and under 17 athletes and for many of the British team it was their first taste of international competition.

 

Day 1

The 1,000m events took place on the opening day with Great Britain having 12 boats in action.

Greta Roeser and Nerys Hall (Wey) qualified for the final of the K2 women 1000m U16, in which they secured seventh place in the final.

It was an assured performance by the Wey pair, who earlier in the day just missed out on a direct route to the A final by just 0.146 seconds, finishing in second place in the heats, before comfortably qualifying via the semi-finals in second place.

In the K1 women 1000 m U15 Annabel Hutchinson (Reading) narrowly missed out on the final, by coming second in the heats and fourth in the semi-final - in a faster time 4:35.633. Team-mate Beth Perry (Southampton) was in eighth place in the semi-final.

The first British athlete in action at the regatta was Michael Motha (Richmond) in K1 men 1000 m U17, with a fifth place in the heats, and sixth in the semi-finals.

Michael teamed up with Dominic Stanley (Falcon) in the K2 men 1000 m U17, where they recorded a sixth place finish in a time of 3:45.351 in the semis.

In the K1 men 1000 m U16 Gabriel Popham-Coveley (Falcon) took sixth place in the semi final in a time of 4:04.218.  Gabriel and Harry Freeland (Reading) combined in the K2 men 1000 m U16, taking seventh in their semi-final.

Isla Bethune (Elmbridge) was the British representative in the K1 women 1000 m U16, where she finished sixth in the heats and semi-finals.

In the semi-finals of the K1 men 1000 m U15 Koen Ayran (Falcon) was sixth, with tem-mate Daniel Mavra (Richmond) in ninth.

In the only canoe events of the day Owen Chisholm (Richmond) was in seventh in the semi-finals of the C1 men 1000 m U15.

Owen partnered with Richmond team-mate Areg Sarkisyan in the C2 men 1000 m U16 where the duo were sixth in the heats, before being disqualified in the semi-final.


Day 2

20 British boats took to the water for the 500m events on day 2 of the Olympic Hopes regatta.

First out in the K1 men 500 m U17 was Dominic Stanley (Falcon) who recorded second place in the heat in a time of 1:48.005.  Dominic was in seventh place in the semi-final later in the day.

Dominic once again paired up with Michael Motha (Richmond) in the K2 men 500 m U17, with fifth places in the heats and semi-finals

Dylan O'Connor (Richmond) and Harry Freeland (Reading) were the British representatives in the K1 men 500 m U16, both taking fourth place and eighth in their heats and semis.

In the K2 men 500 m U16 Harry and Gabriel Popham-Coveley (Falcon) were in third place in their heat, before going on to take seventh at the semi-final stage.

There were two entrants in the K1 men 500 m U15, with Koen Ayran (Falcon) in sixth place in the heats, before going onto be ninth the semi-finals.  Daniel Mavra (Richmond) was in seventh place in the heats.

Following on from her A final on day 1, Greta Roeser (Wey) was in fifth place in the heats and eighth in the semis of the K1 women 500 m U16. Team-mate Isla Bethune (Elmbridge) was in eighth place in her heat.

Mollie Ball (Devizes) and Iona Patrick (Scottish Performance) were placed in seventh in the heats and semis for the K2 women 500 m U16.

In the K1 women 500 m U15 Annabel Hutchinson (Reading) was sixth in the heats and fifth in the semis, with team-mate Beth Perry (Southampton) taking eighth place in the heats.

The British racers were also in action in the K4 under 17 events.

In the K4 men 500 m U17 Haydyn Cooke Bayley (Nottingham), Daniel Mavra (Richmond), Sam Cribbett (Royal Leamington Spa) and Findlay Lewis (Scottish Performance) finished in eighth place in the semi-finals, after earlier recording sixth place in the heats.

Greta Roeser, Nerys Hall (Wey), Edith King (Royal) and Isla Bethune were sixth in the heats and seventh in the semi-finals of the K4 women 500 m U17

There was strong representation from Nottingham and Richmond in the canoe events.

In the C1 women 500 m U17 Hannah Page (Nottingham) was in eighth place in the heats and the semi finals, with Laura Chalmers (Nottingham) also taking eight place at the heats stage.

Laura and Hannah also joined forces in the C2 women 500 m U17, where they missed on the final with fourth place in the semi-finals after sixth in the heats.

Fellow Nottingham paddler Hou Lei was sixth in the heats, and seventh in the semi-finals of the C1 men 500 m U16.

In the C1 men 500 m U15 Richmond duo Owen Chisholm and Areg Sarkisyan were both in seventh place in the heats, with Areg seventh and Owen eighth in their semis.

 

Day 3

In the final day of action at he Olympic Hopes regatta 18 British boats were in action in the 200m events

Haydyn Cooke Bayley (Nottingham) and Dylan O'Connor (Richmond) qualified for the final of the K2 men 200 m U16, after recording second place in the heats and third in the semi-finals.

In a tight race there was little between the field, with the British duo putting in a strong performance finishing just a second off the medal places in a time of 0:37.211.

The second GB crew in the K2 men 200 m U16 was Sam Cribbett (Royal Leamington Spa) and Findlay Lewis (Scottish Performance) who were in eighth place in their semi final

Haydyn Cooke Bayley was the first paddler out for GB in the K1 men 200 m U16, with third place in the opening heat, and in a tight semi-final narrowly missing out on a second final, with sixth place.

Sam Cribbett also competed in the K1 men 200 m U16, with fifth place in the heats.

Mollie Ball (Devizes) and Iona Patrick (Scottish Performance) both progressed to the semi-finals of the K1 women 200 m U15 where they finished in eighth and seventh place.

In the K1 women 200 m U16 Nerys Hall (Wey) and Edith King (Royal) both had sixth place finishes in their heats.

Nerys again partnered with Wey team-mate Greta Roeser in the K2 women 200 m U16, recording eighth place in the heats. Edith King (Royal) and Isla Bethune (Elmbridge) were all in action, recording ninth place in the heats.

In the K4 women 200 m U17 Mollie Ball (Devizes), Beth Perry (Southampton), Annabel Hutchinson (Reading) and Iona Patrick (Scottish Performance) took sixth place in the heats, and followed it up later in the day with ninth in the semi-finals.

There was a semi-final for Daniel Mavra (Richmond), Koen Ayran (Falcon), Michael Motha (Richmond) and Dominic Stanley (Falcon) in the K4 men 200 m U17 after taking seventh place in heats. Haydyn Cooke Bayley, Dylan O'Connor, Sam Cribbett and Findlay Lewis (Scottish Performance) were in eighth place in the heats.

In the C1 women 200 m U17 Nottingham duo Hannah Page and Eleanor Macaulay progressed to the semi-finals, where they finished seventh and eighth.

Eleanor also combined with Laura Chalmers in the C2 women 200 m U17 where a fourth place in the semi-finals saw them just miss out on the final.

Areg Sarkisyan (Richmond) took sixth place in the heats and eighth in the semi-finals of the C1 men 200 m U15, with Hou Lei (Nottingham) taking eighth place in the heats of the C1 men 200 m U16.


Speaking after the racing Nick Fowler, Team Leader for the regatta and Lead GB Junior & England National Talent Squad Coach said:

“For many of our young athletes this was their first experience of an international sprint regatta. So as a coaching team have ensured that we have prioritised working on the athletes’ processes and practised the skills that will help them be successful sprinters in the future.

“It was great to see two of our crew boats qualify for finals. It’s also worth noting that the regatta this year didn’t run any B finals, and nearly all of our boats would have made the B finals, therefore securing top 18 rankings.

“We have received great support for this regatta, including from Gabor Szeltner who has joined us in Racice and coaches at Richmond CC, one of our Talent Club Partnerships who provided five athletes to the team, the most of any club.

“A special mention to the Sprint Racing Committee for helping to contribute to the costs of this trip, which is greatly appreciated by all.

“Finally huge thanks to all the parents and coaches who have helped get the athletes to this point, it is a privilege for the British Canoeing staff to take these athletes on the trips, they wouldn’t happen without the support of all of you.”