Rowing: Cracknell books showdown

The showdown between the Canadian and British coxless fours, which was frustrated three weeks ago when James Cracknell fell ill on the morning of the world cup race in Munich, looks as if it will come off today. In separate semi-finals on the Rotsee yesterday, both crews led from the start and finished in almost identical times, although neither had to reach for top gear to secure victory.

The showdown between the Canadian and British coxless fours, which was frustrated three weeks ago when James Cracknell fell ill on the morning of the world cup race in Munich, looks as if it will come off today. In separate semi-finals on the Rotsee yesterday, both crews led from the start and finished in almost identical times, although neither had to reach for top gear to secure victory.

The Canadians, world champions in 2003, have a long, laid-back style characteristic of the boats coached by the former British coach Mike Spracklen. They were the first Canadian boat to be named for the Olympics in Athens.

Cracknell and his crew-mates - Steve Williams, Alex Partridge and Matthew Pinsent - are the leading British Olympic contenders, formed after trials in April but dogged until recently by a series of minor illnesses. Yesterday was their fourth race with the correct line-up, and everything points to a ravishing final.

The losers yesterday were the Germans, world bronze medallists last year, who had to scratch from the Canadian semi-final when Sebastian Thormann was ill.

Katherine Grainger and Cath Bishop qualified for the pairs final in second place behind the Romanians Georgeta Andrunache and Viorica Susanu. There is no sign yet of the sprint finish which the British engaged to win their world title last year, and after the pair spent an hour talking to their coach Paul Thompson after the race, Bishop admitted that they are not currently sparking. "We're being a little bit tested here," she said.

There are signs that Toby Garbett and Rick Dunn, who replaced Cracknell and Pinsent as the potential pair, are becoming a force to be reckoned with, but the British eight are unfortunately going backwards. They finished sixth in yesterday's repêchage, having made a substitution when Dan Ouseley became the second man to be taken poorly this week.

Six British boats reached the finals in all, including the women's quad, double scullers Elise Laverick and Sarah Winckless, and the lightweight double scullers Helen Casey and Tracy Langridge.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The cartoon depicts the UK (far left) walking around a Syrian child refugee
newsIn an exclusive artwork for The Independent, Ali Ferzat attacks Britain's lack of 'humanity'
Life and Style
tech
Sport
footballManager attacks Sky Sports pundit Jamie Redknapp after criticism of Diego Costa's apparent stamping
News
video
Life and Style
food + drink
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Management Accountant - North West London, £35-40k

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Management Accountant (ACCA / CIMA, ...

Recruitment Genius: Female Care Team

£11 - £12 per hour: Recruitment Genius: A 10 year old girl who has profound an...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Manchester - Urgent Requirement!

£30000 - £35000 per annum + 20 days holidays & pension: Ashdown Group: Marketi...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Business Development Manager ...

Day In a Page

Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore