Belfast Telegraph

Cassells sets sights on a European Championships treble


By Steven Beacom

Coleraine rower Joel Cassells is eyeing hat-trick glory at the European Championships. Cassells is amongst a quartet of Northern Ireland rowers who have been selected in the GB team for the event, which starts tomorrow in Racice in the Czech Republic. Olympic medallist and fellow Coleraine man Peter Chambers, Enniskillen's Holly Nixon and Belfast's Rebecca Shorten will also compete.

There is determination in the GB team to build on the medals won at the World Rowing Cup in Belgrade this month, with Cassells intent on continuing his proud record at this regatta.

In 2015 he was victorious alongside Chambers and last year partnered Sam Scrimgeour to success in the lightweight men's pair. Cassells and Scrimgeour, who claimed bronze in Belgrade, are together again.

"A medal is the target, but we can't take anything for granted," said Cassells. "We'll take it one race at a time, but to get a hat-trick would be pretty good.

"I've rowed with Sam for the past two seasons now, so we know what to expect from each other. We have high standards, but we use that constructively and when we're on the start line I feel confidence from our past racing experiences."

Cassells and Scrimgeour will once again take on Ireland duo Mark Donovan and Shane O'Driscoll, who won the lightweight men's pair World Cup race.

Chambers and his partner Will Fletcher also crossed the line first in Belgrade in the lightweight double sculls and look to be in form to challenge for gold, while Nixon, part of the bronze medal winning GB team in Serbia in the quadruple sculls, will be keen to produce.

Shorten, making her way at international level, is in the Women's Eight crew for the Euros, which end on Sunday.

Belfast Telegraph


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