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South Africa at the World Rowing Championships in Canada – August 2024

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The Under 19 South African Rowing Team is heading to Canada for the 2024 World Rowing Championships. This year, our junior national team will join South Africa’s leading Under 23 and Senior rowers to compete against the world’s best at the Royal Canadian Henley Rowing Course in Ontario, from August 18 to 25.

Our junior national athletes were selected after a gruelling three-month selection process and represent a cross-section of our country’s schools. 23 rowers – 11 boys and 12 girls – will be competing in a range of boat classes, with the goal of representing South Africa in the A-finals events and, hopefully, bringing home medals.

In addition to our junior athletes, South Africa will be represented by Braden Howard and Matt Hayward in the Under 23 Men’s Double Sculls (BM2X), Chloe Cresswell in the Under 23 Lightweight Women’s Single Sculls (BLW1X), Murray Bales Smith in the Senior Lightweight Men’s Single Sculls (LM1X), and Nadia Gaspari in the Senior Lightweight Women’s Single Sculls (LW1X). This event is a unique combination of Under 19 rowers, Under 23 rowers, and Senior non-Olympic rowers, offering an exceptional experience for all our athletes.

Our coaches and athletes are available for interviews to help get more exposure for their specific endeavours in August and to help raise the profile of rowing in general. South African Rowing is ranked third in bringing home medals from the Olympics, after Athletics and Swimming. Last year, at the 2023 Junior World Rowing Championships held in Paris, our team brought home a bronze medal in the U19 Men’s Pair and qualified for two A finals.

Competing at this international level is a tremendous honour, but it comes with high costs and very little financial support from the government. Despite numerous supporters and support from our headline sponsor of the RMB National Squad, many of these athletes are self-funded. For example, boat and blade rentals for the junior team alone, will come to R235,000 and is one of the major expenses, as transporting across the globe is unfeasible.

A secondary – and crucial – aim for exposure is to draw attention to our [fundraising drive](https://www.givengain.com/project/roberto-raising-funds-for-rowing-south-africa-79719) in support of all our rowers heading to Canada later this year.

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