Team Canada's women's eight competes at the Lucerne Regatta on Sunday.World Rowing
World Rowing

Canada’s women’s eight rows to gold at Lucerne World Cup event

Olympic champions at the Tokyo 2020 Games, Team Canada’s women’s eight rowing squad got the good times rolling at the second World Cup stop of the season on Sunday.

After not competing in the opening World Cup event of the season in Varese, Italy, the Canadian group powered their way to a victory in Lucerne, Switzerland, rowing the distance in 06:04.47, more than a second ahead of second place.

Great Britain pushed their boat into silver medal position in a time of 06:05.57 and led in front of Canada’s group of Jessica Sevick, Caileigh Filmer, Maya Meschkuleit, Kasia Gruchalla-Wesierski, Kristen Siermachesky, Sydney Payne, Kristina Walker, Abigail Dent, and coxswain Kristen Kit until the final 500 metres of the race, where the Canadians pushed ahead.

The Team Canada boat featured three athletes from the gold medal-winning race at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, in Gruchalla-Wesierski, Payne and Kit.

“I am a lucky coxswain because I asked the crew to go, and go, and go again, and they always responded to every call. I told them before the race, they had to go first with the head, then with the heart, and they did that today,” Kit said post-race of a women’s eight team that has already secured a Paris 2024 Olympic quota spot.

“We’re a team of 11, and it showed today when our stroke seat was down with food poisoning. We rowed with a sub, and it worked great. I am so proud.”

Team USA grabbed the bronze medal to round off the women’s eight podium on Sunday, crossing the finish line in 06:08.77.

The gold medal on the World Cup stage continues to be a strong era for the Canadian women’s eight. After finishing fifth at the Rio 2016 Olympics, Canada won silver medals at the 2017 and 2018 World Championships before capturing gold at Tokyo 2020.

Since the last Olympics, the group has won Pan Am Games gold at Santiago 2023 and bronze at the 2022 World Championships.

Moffatt, Casson narrowly miss podium

Canada’s duo of Jill Moffatt and Jennifer Casson came close to a podium finish in the women’s lightweight double skulls race at the Lucerne Regatta but failed to secure a podium spot, finishing fourth in a time of 7:03.43.

Great Britain’s Emily Craig and Imogen Grant won the event in 06:54.83, while New Zealand’s Shannon Cox and Jackie Kiddle grabbed silver in 06:57.68 before the American pair of Michelle Sechser and Molly Reckford edged out Canada for bronze in 07:01.37.

While they weren’t able to push onto the podium, the Olympics remain a focus, with the Canadian boat already qualifying for a Paris 2024 Olympic quota spot in the event.