The first international showdown of the year is always exciting. But this time the DRV Junior Regatta at the Olympic Regatta Course in Munich-Oberschleißheim was even a bit more: For U19 rowers, it was about exploring chances for the upcoming European Rowing Junior Championships in Essen, Germany (18-19 May). Strong competition from Germany, Great Britain, Switzerland and the Czech Republic helped coaches and national associations to assess performance levels of their youngest talents.
A total of 73 races with 217 individual heats filled two regatta days with almost almost 19 hours of racing. 915 rowers aged 15 to 18 years, representing ten nations, competed in thrilling races. The most successful club with eleven victories was the SC Magdeburg, followed by the Allgemeinen Alster-Club, the RC Nürtingen and the RC Tegel, each of whose rowers medalled nine times. The prestigious JFA 8+ was won by the composite Landesruderverband Mecklenburg-Vorpommern / Ratzeburger Ruderclub / Ruder-Club Potsdam / Ruderklub am Wannsee. The composite Berliner Ruder-Club / Hamburger und Germania Ruder Club / Potsdamer Ruder-Club Germania / Ruder-Club ‚Allemannia von 1866‘ / Ruder-Club Bergedorf / Ruder-Club Rotation Berlin / SportClub Berlin-Köpenick had the bow ball in front in the JMA 8+. Tim Roth of the Swiss Rowing Association won the JMA 1x, only two tenths of a second ahead of Paul Berghoff from SC Magdeburg. Alexandra Förster (Ruderclub Meschede) won the JFA 1x. The complete results of the regatta can be found here.
In consultation with the DRV, Regatta München ran heats with seven instead of only six boats, depending on the overall number of entries for important U19 events. This gave coaches a better performance comparability than the standard distribution resulting in heats with only two or three boats. „This mode was very well received. We’d like to keep this format,“ says German national junior coach Sabine Tschäge. She also praised the organisation of the regatta and her athletes: „Munich is the Rotsee of U19 rowing with a great atmosphere. Even more important: We did very well in the face of top-class competition from Great Britain, the Czech Republic and Switzerland and were able to compete at the top across the board.“
„Great to see how the athletes and our 120 volunteers bravely defied rain and frosty temperatures. We saw a lot of exciting, fair races – especially in the U19 events which doubled as full rehearsal for the European Championships,“ praised Oliver Bettzieche, Chairman of the Board of Regatta München e.V. „We were also very pleased to welcome Bavaria’s Minister of the Interior Joachim Herrmann to the Olympic Regatta Course. He promised that the Bavarian State Government will look into supporting future major sporting events. This could set important impulses for the maintenance of the facility. We as the Regatta Association of the Munich Metropolitan Region are happy to respond to his call and continue to work on bringing important international rowing events back to the 1972 Olympic course.“
Interior Minister Herrmann visited the regatta accompanied by numerous representatives from state politics, the state capital Munich as well as from sport associations in Oberschleißheim.