World Cup: Coleraine trio miss out on Lucerne medals

Alan Campbell
Alan Campbell won a bronze medal at the London Olympics four years ago

There was no medal success for the three Coleraine rowers involved in Sunday's finals at the World Cup regatta in Lucerne.

Richard Chambers was fifth in the lightweight double sculls, as was Richard's younger brother Peter in a hotly contested lightweight four final.

Single sculler Alan Campbell started strongly but faded in the closing stages to also take fifth place.

Campbell is aiming to compete in a fourth Olympic Games this summer.

After missing out on the 'A' final at last year's World Championships and again at the recent Europeans, Campbell is showing steady progression and had his traditional fast start in the final.

However, as the race reached its second half the London 2012 bronze medallist couldn't hold on to his rivals Mahe Drysdale from New Zealand and the Czech Republic's Ondrej Synek.

The two men who finished ahead of Campbell at the Olympics four years ago eased away from the field and the Kiwi had the greater strength to edge away and win.

Four races in three days looked to have taken their toll on Campbell, who was a distant fifth.

Chambers return

Richard Chambers has only recently returned to full fitness and this weekend was the season debut with Will Fletcher after they were forced to miss the European Championships earlier this month.

They faced a field with the three previous world champions in it - France, South Africa and Norway - as well as the improving Irish brothers Paul and Gary O'Donovan.

Although they started well they had slipped back to fifth place by the halfway stage and were never able to challenge for the medals, lacking the speed of the French pair Pierre Houin and Jeremie Azou who held off the Norwegians and South Africans, with the O'Donovan brothers finishing in fourth.

The lightweight four final saw all six boats separated by less than a second at the halfway point but the third quarter of the race saw New Zealand pull away for the win ahead of world champions Switzerland.

The Great Britain quartet had no answer for the turn of pace and eventually finished in fifth, over five seconds behind the winners.

Sunday's results are unlikely to damage the chances of all three rowers making the Olympics with the Great Britain team for Rio named on 9 June.