Strong performance from Perse rower at World Junior Championships
20 Aug 2019
Brett Taylor (Lower Sixth) set a personal best on his way to finishing in the top 12 overall at the World Rowing Junior Championships in Tokyo.
Following on from being crowned British Junior Open J18 single sculls champion last month, Brett represented Chinese Taipei in the single sculls at the World Junior Championships, which provided the rowing test event for the 2020 Olympics.
Having finished 29th overall on his World Junior Championships debut last year, he knew the challenge he would face, while the hot and exposed conditions provided another obstacle, with some rowers needing to be treated for heat exhaustion during the competition.
Brett came fourth in his heat and with only the top two automatically progressing from each heat to the semi-finals, it meant he had to enter the repechage with the aim of finishing in the top two to claim a spot in the semis.
With the Polish participant expected to win the repechage, Brett said: “I knew the competition for the second place would be between GB, Thailand and myself. The Polish sculler went off as fast as expected and GB and I followed close behind. Thailand dropped a second behind us by 500 metres and the gap increased. For the first 1,500 metres, the GB sculler and I were neck-and-neck within a second of each other. With just over 400 metres to go, I could see that he was starting to push, so I picked up the rating and started to pull ahead.”
Brett edged out the GB rower by just over two seconds with a personal best of 7min 09.50sec and moved into the semi-finals, where he finished fifth to put himself into the B final.
With a strong headwind making for difficult racing in the B final, Brett crossed the line in 7:42.39 and he was pleased with his display.
He said: “On paper, my time in the B final was worse than the semi (7:30.88), but it was a much closer race in tougher conditions. I was just 11 seconds behind the winner in a time faster than the last place of the A final and I had closed the gap on people who had beaten me previously.”
Brett is now looking forward to racing in the Asian Rowing Junior Championships in Thailand in December in what will be his last international competition at junior level.