Rowing: Bridge's Seniors service

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The Independent Online
THREE World Under-23 champions from 1991 will compete again at Strathclyde over the weekend in this year's event. Peter Bridge, an Oxford Blue, will race the coxless pair with Nicholas Clarry who has twice opposed him in the Boat Race, writes Hugh Matheson.

At Henley last week Clarry partnered Dave Gillard to victory in the Goblets event for coxless pairs. Gillard races this time in the coxless four with three other Henley winners from the University of London's successful Grand Challenge Cup eight.

The Under-23 World Championships are known by FISA, the sport's governing body, as the 'Match des Seniors' to distinguish them from the Senior Championships or Olympic regattas. They are seen as an essential stepping stone from junior to senior representative racing, particularly where the transition may take five or six years of unrewarded slog. Most of the British team for Strathclyde will expect to move into the senior team for the next four-year Olympic cycle, beginning after Barcelona.

The University of London lightweight coxless four of Jason Keys, James Brodie, Gary Belcham, and Steven Cox finished second in Naro, Sicily last year and will hope to win this time as will the men's eight which is drawn largely from the Imperial College crew which won the Thames Cup at Henley at the second attempt after a dead heat in the first race.