Olympic mens coxless four preview

The mens coxless fours are the man of man’s event – power and a battle paddle from start to finish.

  • AustraliaSo far this season they had a great battle with the British in Lucerne the Aussies led till the final few strokes when the pressure the British put them under caused the Aussie boat to catch a crab. The showdown between GB and Australia will be one of the highlights of the regatta, I’ve a feeling the Aussies are going to come up short (again). Silver for the “green & gold.”
  • Canada “This is Canada’s only heavyweight men’s sweep boat at the Rio Olympics, for a country steeped in the tradition of the men’s 8 (winners in Barcelona and Beijing and runners-up in London.  Their form so far this season hasn’t been too encouraging, 4th in Varese looks positive. At Lucerne they missed the A-Final. Will they finally be able to put it all together in Rio?”
  • Great Britain “The British consider the Men’s Coxless Four as their boat, they’ve won at the last four Olympic Games and can trace the DNA of the crew all the way back to the LA Games in 1984. As a crew they are unbeaten, although the Aussies gave them a real test in Lucerne. Anything other than gold in Rio will be a major shock.”
  • Italy “Italy are the defending world Champions and have a strong record at Olympic level.Olympic rules state that the rower that qualifies via the FOQR has to race in that boat class if they race at the Games.  What’s going to be challenging for the Italians in Rio is that Domenico Montrone will have to double up in the M8. This could be a real challenge given that some of the 4s and 8s races are only 30 minutes apart….we’ll have to wait and see what FISA decide to do. If the scheduling difficulties can be resolved then the Italians will be a strong challenger for a medal.”
  • The Netherlands “They might not be as quick as the 2013 World Championship winning crew, but they are part of a very strong Dutch squad that probably ranks as no.4 in the world right now (after GB Germany and New Zealand). The Dutch are an outside bet for a bronze.”
  • Russia “From the original M4- line-up only one athlete remains, Anton Zarutskiy. So, coach Mike Spracklen has put together a crew from the leftovers.“
  • USA “ So far in 2016 they have definitely stated their intentions to be among the medal contenders. They won in Varese, beating the Italian World Champions (although neither the British nor the Australians competed in Varese). In Lucerne, where the British and Aussies were racing, they took 4th (beaten to the bronze by the Dutch). With medals at both 2013 and 2014 world Championships and at the 2016 Varese world Cup the US will definitely be contenders for a medal. I’m picking them to be battling for the bronze.”
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