Vicky Thornley strikes European gold as Bath Start rowers make international debuts in Racice

28 May 2017

Vicky Thornley won her first European Championships title as she claimed the GB Rowing Team’s only gold medal at the 2017 event in Racice, Czech Republic.

Thornley, a graduate of the GB Rowing Team Start programme at the University of Bath, continued her excellent start to the season by moving through the field to take the women’s single scull title.

It rekindled fond memories for Rio 2016 Olympic silver-medallist Thornley, who won her first international title at the 2009 World U23 Championships in Racice with the women’s eight.

Two other Start graduates made their senior GB debuts at the Europeans, with Sara Parfett – who studied Biology at the University – helping a new-look women’s eight to fourth place in their final.

Economics graduate Frazier Christie – who, like Parfett, was coached by Dan Harris on the Bath Start programme – was due to race with Tom Barras in the men’s double scull.

However, a late injury to John Collins meant Barras was switched to the quad, with lightweight rower Zak Lee-Green instead joining Christie in the double. They finished fifth in both their semi-final on Saturday and in the B final on Sunday.

Click here to find out more about the Lottery-funded GB Rowing Team Start programme at the University of Bath.

Picture of Vicky Thornley courtesy of Peter Spurrier/Intersport Images.

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