Johannesburg - Three years ago, South Africa had a men’s four boat but hardly any rowers to occupy the seats. Yet, somehow, the national squad managed to qualify a spot for the Rio Olympic Games on Monday in that class.
The men’s four crew of David Hunt, Jonty Smith, Vince Breet and Jake Green became the fifth South African boat – a men's and women's pairs and a men's and women's lightweight sculls, respectively, have already qualified for the Games – to book a spot for the global showpiece at the Olympic qualification regatta in Lucerne, Switzerland.
The team qualified in style as they led their final race from start to finish.National rowing coach, Roger Barrow, was delighted with the crew’s achievement in qualifying a record amount of boats for the Games.
”It is a new record now and I think the best we had in the past was three ... So, I think it is a great, new standard for us. It just builds confidence in the team,” Barrow said.
”Everyone is chuffed, and we are also kind of shocked about how well they did.”They haven’t put a good row on the table this season, so we’ve been hard on them in training and talking to the guys about executing the race strategy compared to what happened in Varese.