July 08, 2012

Senior National Team Berths on the Line for OKC Athletes

Will Daly
With the Olympic and Under 23 World Championship teams selected and set for competition, the attention this week shifts to the final two national team squads left to be named.

Beginning Monday morning on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, NJ, racing in the 2012 Non-Olympic Senior World Championship Trial gets underway.

Racing in the senior event will feature competition in the men’s pair with coxswain, lightweight men’s and women’s singles, lightweight men’s pair, lightweight men’s and women’s quadruple sculls and the lightweight men’s eight.

Winners of their respective events will be named to the teams that will compete in the World Rowing Senior and Junior Championships August 14-19, in Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The combined events are run together during an Olympic year to accommodate senior boat classes not included in the Olympic program.

Hillary Saeger and Lindsey Hochman were in the 2011 World Championship bronze medal quad and will compete in the lightweight quad at senior trials in the composite entry from Pocock Rowing Center, Riverside Boat Club and the USRowing Training Center – Oklahoma City. They will be joined by OKC's Michelle Sechser and Chelsea Smith. Sechser and Smith won two bronze medals at the 2011 Pan American Games in the Lightweight Women's Double and Women's Quad.

Two men’s pairs with coxswain from the Oklahoma City training center will go head-to-head for a spot on the senior team, including the crews of Justin Stangel, Blaise Didier and coxswain Stephen Young and Ryan Shelton, Max Goff and coxswain Marcus McElhenney.

The two boats recently raced in the 2012 USRowing National Championships with Stangel, Didier and Young winning the gold medal. Didier and McElhenney won gold in the eight at the 2011 Pan American Games and Didier finished sixth in the pair with coxswain at the 2011 World Rowing Championships. Stangel finished ninth in the pair in Slovenia. McElhenney is also a 2008 Bejiing Olympic bronze medalist.

Four USRowing Training Center – Oklahoma City athletes will be racing in the lightweight men’s pair including 2008 Olympian Will Daly who will row with Greg Flood. Daly finished 11th in the lightweight four at the 2008 Olympic Games and 13th in the boat at the 2011 World Rowing Championships. Flood finished ninth in the lightweight four at the 2011 World Rowing Under 23 Championships. The second OKC entry will be Christian Klein and Kyle Traub. Klein competed in the Lightweight Men's 8+ at the 2011 World Rowing Championships.

Racing in the combined events will begin Monday morning, with finals scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday.

For event information and schedule in the 2012 Non-Olympic Senior World Championship Trials, visit: http://www.usrowing.org/NationalTeams/OlympicSeniorNationalTeam/SrNTSelectionEvents/2012SenWCTrials.aspx

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