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Men's Coxless Four (M4-)

Pre-Race Analysis

Preliminary Heats

Top 3 to Semi-finals. Others to Repechage.

Heat 1

SLO (Lane 1), ROM, GBR, AUS, YUG (Lane 5)

This will be the most watched race in the early going with Steve Redgrave of GBR going for an historic 5th consecutive Olympic gold medal. Steve's first gold dates back to 1984 in Los Angeles in the 4+. His next three were all won in the 2- in Seoul in 1988, Barcelona in 1992 and Atlanta in 1996. With the top 3 crews in this race to advance to the semi-finals, the one sure bet is that GBR and AUS will be two of those crews. The only question is whether GBR (1st in 1997, 1998 and 1999 Worlds and winners of the first two World Cups this summer in Munich and Vienna) and AUS (4th and 2nd, respectively in the 1998 and 1999 Worlds) will fight to the end of this race for winner's bragging rights. Perhaps a better reason for them to go after each other now is to secure the preferred lane assignments in what should be wild semi-finals, where lanes may make the difference in Penrith's winds. Also at stake may be GBR's desire to put to bed any doubts raised in their (and others') minds about GBR's 4th place finish behind ITA, NZL and AUS in the final World Cup meeting in Lucerne in July. The 3rd qualifying place for the semi-finals is up for grabs, with the nod going to ROM.

Heat 2

POL (Lane 1), ITA, NOR, USA (Lane 4)

With the top 3 crews to advance to the semi-finals, not much doubt those crews will be ITA (3rd in 1999 Worlds and winner of the Lucerne World Cup in July), NOR (5th in 1999 Worlds and 6th in Lucerne World Cup) and the USA (1st in Olympic Qualification Regatta in Lucerne in July with an impressive new combination). The only question is whether these 3 crews will race the full 2000 meters to secure preferred lane assignments in the semi- finals.

Heat 3

GER (Lane 1), FRA, NZL, EGY (Lane 4)

The top 3 who will advance to the semi-finals should be NZL, FRA and GER in that order. NZL was 4th at the 1999 Worlds and 2nd behind ITA, but ahead of AUS and GBR, at the Lucerne World Cup in July.

Copyright 2000. Kent Mitchell.

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