Scullers hit their straps early to advance at world champs

00:00, Jul 23 2010

Marlborough rowers Robbie and Karl Manson got off to the best possible start at the World Under-23 Rowing Championships in Brest, Belarus in the early hours of this morning.

The New Zealand double sculls brothers combination, from the Wairau and Blenheim Rowing Clubs respectively, were untroubled to win by two boat lengths and now progress to the semifinals tomorrow.

In an email this morning from the New Zealand team headquarters, Robbie Manson, who is defending the title he won last year with Picton's Joseph Sullivan, said, "We had a solid row in our heat. Apart from a few nerves putting the boat on the water I was relatively relaxed before the race although I think Karl was a bit nervous.

"We had a fast start and led from the first stroke. We slowly increased our lead out to about 5sec at the 1500m mark. We dropped the stroke rate in the second half of the race and just did what we needed to do to win the heat. Relatively comfortable but, like any rowing race, it still hurts an awful lot."

The Mansons are coached by former Wairau and Central Region Performance Centre head coach Mark Stallard.

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