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Last Updated: Friday, 11 August 2006, 17:17 GMT 18:17 UK
Record numbers for rowing champs
Great Britain's men's coxless four
Great Britain's men's coxless four are defending champions
An unprecendented 1,101 rowers from 64 nations will take part in the World Rowing Championships later this month.

A total of 398 crews, including Great Britain's two defending champions, will be in action over on the 2012 Olympic course in Eton.

Steve Williams is the senior man in Britain's coxless four and the women's quad scull also took gold last year.

"Even Sir Steve Redgrave never had the chance to race as defending world champion on home water," said Williams.

"There will be big crowds and it's important to us that we perform well".

The Championships, which begin on 20 August with finals seven days later, are being held in the UK for the first time in 20 years.

Kath Grainger, who strokes the quad scull, added: "This year is very special to all of us. We all want to do our very best at Eton."

The United States will have the biggest number of entries with a total of 26 boats.

And China are a nation to watch as they have been developing strength in depth in preparation for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

"It's a spectacular entry and one which has given us a huge boost as we count down to opening up the venue next week," said organising committee chairman Mike Baldwin.

Find out where to start rowing
19 Oct 05 |  Rowing
Rowing on the BBC
10 Aug 06 |  Rowing

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