ROWING: Gold medal success for Peter Chambers and Joel Cassells at European Championships in Poland

Peter Chambers (left) and Joel Cassells celebrate
Peter Chambers (left) and Joel Cassells celebrate

Coleraine duo Peter Chambers and Joel Cassells surged to gold medal glory at the European Championships in Poland on Sunday.

Chambers and Cassells set a European record of 6:28.58 to claim the lightweight pair title in Poznan.

Chambers and Cassells led throughout but had to hold off a fast finish from the French team to win by just three-tenths of a second.

Meanwhile, Peter’s brother Richard secured a silver in the lightweight double sculls with Englishman Will Fletcher.

They held defending European champions France stroke for stroke through the first 1250m before Stany Delayre and Jeremie Azou moved away over the closing quarter of the race to win in a new European best time of 6:11.38.

Great Britain claimed an impressive six golds from a medal tally of 10 on the final day of the European Championships.

The 52-strong GB Rowing Team defended the men’s four and women’s pair golds they won last year and added new winners in the lightweight women’s double, men’s open and lightweight pairs and the lightweight women’s single scull.

Britain had a much-changed men’s four this time out but they were successful in defending the European title as Nathaniel Reilly-O’Donnell, Scott Durant, Alan Sinclair and Tom Ransley led from the outset to come home in five minutes 55.70 seconds ahead of Greece and third-placed Belarus.

“We have a great tradition in this boat class as a nation so it’s great to take up that mantle and win here,” said Ransley.

James Foad and Matthew Langridge held off a strong French finish to claim the men’s pair gold in a time of 6mins 27.89secs, while Helen Glover and Heather Stanning added the equivalent women’s title to become the reigning World, Olympic and European Champions.

Enniskillen’s Leonora Kennedy and partner Monika Dukarska – competing for Ireland – were third in the ‘B’ final of the women’s pair to finish the regatta ninth overall.