Jamie Schroeder, who only began rowing in 2001, won the AXA British indoor rowing championship in a time of 5min 46.7sec at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham yesterday.
Schroeder, 21, from Stanford University, has joined the USA squad and is expected to be a fixture in the team for the Athens Olympics in 2004.
Tom Kay, Britain's longest-serving top lightweight and still only 33, finished fourth in a field that included the Olympic double sculling champions Robert Sycz and Tomasz Kucharski, and Eskild Ebbesen from Denmark's talented and successful lightweight coxless four.
The Under-23 championship had a strong Boat Race flavour. Robin Williams, the Cambridge coach, felt his team had shaded it, but explained that both had suffered recent sickness, with Oxford suffering worst at the Fours Head and the light blues worse off here.
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