World Cup III: who to watch this weekend and how

World Rowing Cup III begins this weekend in Rotterdam

3 minute read
Words Benedict Tufnell
Photography Benedict Tufnell
Published 11.07.19

UPDATE: Watch our live feed from the finals now

The world’s best rowers are preparing to face off this weekend in the third and final 2019 world cup regatta. It marks the last chance for crews to test themselves ahead of the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Austria in August. 

Racing begins on Friday 12 July on Rotterdam’s international regatta course, the Willem Alexanderbaan and includes the historic Dutch Holland Beker Regatta. More that 700 athletes from 42 nations will take part.

Who to watch

In the women’s pair, the current world record holders for the event – Kerri Gowler and Grace Prendergast of New Zealand – go in to the weekend as favourites. The New Zealanders are unbeaten this season having won at World Cup II last month and most recently at Henley Royal Regatta. Their biggest competition will be the Australian pair of Jessica Morrison and Annabelle McIntyre. This duo recently finished just a few seconds behind the Kiwis at Poznan.

Photo Gowler and Predergast of New Zealand // 2019 World Rowing Cup III, Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Credit Benedict Tufnell

In the men’s pair it looks likely to be a showdown between the Croation Sinkovic brothers who are current world champions but did not race in Poznan due to injury and the Australian team’s top sweep rowers Alexander Hill and Spencer Turrin.

In the women’s quads China won the first two world cup regattas this season but are not entered in Rotterdam meaning it will likely be a battle between Germany, Poland and the Netherlands for the gold this weekend.

In the men’s quads, Poland will look to continue their winning streak having already won the first two world cup races this season.

The men’s single is another tough one to call, with no clear front runner. Denmark’s Sverri Nielsen turned heads in Poland last month with a somewhat surprise win at world cup II. If he has maintained his speed Nielsen will be a strong contender here but reigning world champion Kjetil Borch is rapidly returning to form following an injury this season and Olli Zeidler (GER) and Ondrej Synek (CZE) wont turn over easily.  Don’t forget Robbie Manson (NZL) who won the third world cup last summer and beat Drysdale for the New Zealand team single spot this season. 

Photo Denmark’s Sverri Nielsen // 2019 World Rowing Cup III, Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Credit Benedict Tufnell

In the women’s single reigning World and European Champion Sanita Puspure of Ireland has withdrawn from Rotterdam leaving the door open for 2017 World Champion, Jeannine Gmelin of Switzerland and World Rowing Cup II winner Emma Twigg of New Zealand to battle for the top spot. 

Twigg won last weekend at the Henley Royal Regatta and at world cup II last month and is making her comeback this season having retired after finishing fourth in the single at Rio 2016. 

In the women’s eight Australia will look to repeat their win in Poznan this weekend. The United States is not entered in Rotterdam but expect medal challenges from Great Britain and New Zealand. Great Britain finished third at World Rowing Cup II, just ahead of New Zealand. New Zealand beat the British last weekend at the Henley Royal Regatta. Current European Champions Romania should also not be counted out. 

Photo Australian women’s eight in Poznan last month // 2019 World Rowing Cup III, Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Credit Benedict Tufnell

The Germans remain firm favourites in the men’s eight as they continue their unbeaten streak since the start of the 2017 season. Britain have come close twice this year with two silver medals and New Zealand, featuring Hamish Bond and Mahe Drysdale beat the British eight on home water in Henley last weekend so it will be interesting to see how things shake down between these three in Rotterdam. The United States are also making the first appearance this weekend are an unknown entity. 

The favourite in the para PR1 women’s single sculls has to be Birgit Skarstein of Norway. Skarstein has dominated this boat class for the last two years and is likely to remain there. But watch out for Israel’s Moran Samuel. She is the silver medallist from last year’s World Rowing Championships.

How to watch

The LIVE draw will be taking place at 15:00 CET on Thursday, 11 July and will be live streamed on Facebook. The first races will start Friday, 12 July at 09:00 (CET). Here is how to follow the event on mobile, tablet, or desktop.

The provisional time table for the event can be found here. Entries for all the races are available here.

Live audio commentary and the live race tracker will be available for ALL races on

Live VIDEO stream will be available for the following races but can be subject to change:

Follow Row360 on Facebook,  InstagramTwitter, and YouTube for behind the scenes interviews, live updates, photos and more.

Keep up with all of our Galleries, videos and daily reports from Rotterdam this weekend here.