Chambers crews progress at Poland European Championships
The four rowers from Northern Ireland made a strong start to the new season on the first day of the European Championships in Poznan, Poland.
Richard Chambers qualified for the lightweight double scull semi-finals, along with Will Fletcher, in their first international race together.
Peter Chambers and fellow Coleraine rower Joel Cassells made the final of the non-Olympic class lightweight pair.
Leonora Kennedy and partner Monika Dukarska made the women's pairs semis.
Representing Ireland, Kennedy, from Enniskillen, and Dukarska, were involved in a ding-dong battle for a place in the semi-finals with Spain and Poland.
The Netherlands pair rowed to victory in a time of 7:12.68, but with two more places in the semi-finals on Saturday up for grabs the Irish duo had to dig deep.
They were edged out of second place by Spain by under a second but they in turn claimed the all-important third place by eight-tenths of a second from Poland.
Coleraine man Chambers and Fletcher led from start to finish in the Great Britain boat, winning their heat in a time of 6:25.84, four and a half seconds in front of the Netherlands, who also progressed straight to the semi-finals.
Richard's younger brother Peter is beginning his season in the non-Olympic class lightweight pair, the discipline he won a world title in 2011 in Bled, Slovenia.
Peter had an injury-plagued winter but teamed up with Cassells in an impressive showing as they led all the way to win in a time of 6:50.14 to move directly to Sunday's final.
The Spanish pair were a distant second, five and a half seconds adrift.
London 2012 bronze medallist, sculler Alan Campbell, misses out on the trip to Poland because of injury.