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Page last updated at 14:35 GMT, Sunday, 31 May 2009 15:35 UK

Gold rush as GB dominate in Spain

Venue: Banyoles, Spain Dates: 29-31 May Coverage: Highlights on BBC Two, 1300-1400 Monday 1 June

Pete Reed and Andy Hodge

Replay - Reed and Hodge clinch gold in Spain

Great Britain won nine of the 14 gold medals on offer as they dominated the opening World Cup regatta in Spain.

Katherine Grainger, in the scull, and the men's pair of Pete Reed and Andy Hodge, both won their first outings at this level in their new events.

GB won the first seven finals, starting with victory in the pair and double in both the men's and women's races.

The other British golds went to the men's four, Alan Campbell in the single scull and the women's quad and eight.

They also picked up a silver and bronze as they claimed their biggest ever haul of medals at a World Cup regatta.

I'm over the moon; I wanted to try the single as a personal test but I didn't dream of winning

Katherine Grainger

The silver was particularly significant because the men's quadruple scull, which only lost to Olympic champions Poland, is the first complete crew to come out of GB Rowing's talent identification scheme, World Class Start.

"I like the way they are doing things," said GB Rowing's performance director Dave Tanner.

"Overall, of course, I'm very pleased with what has happened here. There are many more boats to come in later regattas but in the events here where there was a strong field, it showed that our top boats are in form."

Annie Vernon and Anna Bebington, who were later part of the winning quad scull, set the tone with victory in the first race of the day, leading all the way in the women's double scull.

Louisa Reeve and Olivia Whitlam followed suit in the women's pair before the men took over.

Reed and Hodge were part of the four that won gold at the 2008 Olympics and were making their first appearance as a pair at World Cup level.


They bided their time before taking charge in their final while Matthew Wells and Stephen Rowbotham also came from behind to claims the men's double scull.

"It was a really good race, a challenge. We were very quick, with a good rhythm, it was really exciting. It's great to be part of an exciting new project," said Hodge.

With the four that won gold in Beijing having broken up, a new Great Britain four is taking shape and the crew, stroked by Matthew Langridge and containing three of the British eight that finished second at the Olympics, cruised to victory on Sunday ahead of the Czech Republic.

Olivia Whitlam (left) and Louisa Reeve of Great Britain pose with their gold medals after winning the women's pair
Whitlam (left) and Reeve won Britain's second gold of the day in Banyoles

"We could take an easy rhythm throughout the race; we were prepared to give more but fortunately did not need to," said Langridge.

Grainger, a three-time Olympic silver medallist, has switched to the single scull this year after spending the rest of her illustrious career in team boats and she led all the way in her final, while in the men's race Campbell beat Olympic champion Olaf Tufte.

"I'm over the moon. I wanted to try the single as a personal test but I didn't dream of winning," said Grainger.

"It wasn't the strongest field but you can only race the people who are here. I'm ecstatic to have won. I could not have asked for more."

Campbell was equally happy with his win following a difficult 2008, which saw him forced to have knee surgery in the run-up to Beijing.

"The Olympics was a tough time for me and I'm hoping for a better season. I need to show my form in every regatta. Each one is a personal test for me", said Campbell.

The final two victories saw Bebington and Vernon claim a second gold as part of the women's quad scull, while Whitlam and Reeve claimed their second gold of the regatta as part of the women's eight.

Katharine Grainger

Replay - Gold for Grainger in single scull

see also
Campbell secures victory in Spain
31 May 09 |  Rowing
Reed and Hodge reach pair final
30 May 09 |  Rowing
GB pair start season with victory
29 May 09 |  Rowing
Hewitt named in World Cup team
26 May 09 |  Rowing
Purchase ruled out of World Cup
18 May 09 |  Rowing
Grainger to race in single scull
29 Apr 09 |  Rowing
Grainger dominates at GB trials
13 Apr 09 |  Rowing
British four win thrilling gold
16 Aug 08 |  Rowing
Rowing weight classes explained
30 May 08 |  Rowing
Rowing boat classes explained
30 May 08 |  Rowing
Power to your pull, with Andy Hodge
06 Jun 08 |  Rowing
Rowing on the BBC
07 May 08 |  Rowing
Find out where to start rowing
19 Oct 05 |  Rowing

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Telegraph Dominant GB set World Cup standard - 19 hrs ago
The ScotsmanLone Grainger leads from the front to win World Cup gold - 37 hrs ago
The Times Britain's finest hit gold standard - 38 hrs ago
The Independent Rowing: British squad make glittering start - 38 hrs ago
Sporting Life BRITAIN DOMINATE IN SPAIN - 41 hrs ago
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