Rowers to the Olympic Games: ‘It was tough in the heat’

The rowers of the Holland Acht finished second in the final at the World Rowing Championships in Belgrade on Sunday. This means that Brabanders Sander de Graaf and Jacob van de Kerkhof, among others, have won a ticket for the Olympic Games in Paris. “We are very proud of this achievement,” says Sander from Made.

The Holland Acht was the last Dutch boat to compete at the World Rowing Championships in the Serbian capital Belgrade. The gold went to the British, who were just over a second faster: 5.24.20 at 5.25.23. The Holland Acht fought hard during a spectacular race to silver. An equaling of the performance at the previous World Cup in the Czech Republic.

Sander: “It was a tough race in the heat. We clearly missed the mark in the beginning, but a brave sprint still brought us very close to gold.”

The silver also provides a starting ticket for the Olympic Games for the Dutch rowers. “We are looking ahead to the Games in Paris, this was certainly a goal of ours,” says Sander. He was also there at the previous Games in Tokyo, but then in the four without a coxswain.

In total, the Netherlands was represented in nine finals in the Olympic classes. Five gold medals were won. The Holland Acht was represented in Serbia by Sander de Graaf, Jacob van de Kerkhof, Mick Makker, Gert-Jan van Doorn, Guillaume Krommenhoek, Jan van der Bij, Olav Molenaar and Guus Mollee. Dieuwke Fetter was the helmsman.

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