The Sarasota Crew rower will go for the title Sunday in the 2,000 meter single scull final
Clark Dean enjoyed setting a new world record so much on Wednesday that he decided to do it again on Saturday.
If only rowing a single scull 2,000 meters could be that easy.
Racing in the semifinals of the 2018 World Rowing Junior Championships in Racice, Czech Republic, Dean blasted almost five seconds off the mark set just 24 hours earlier by Moritz Wolff of Germany during Friday’s quarterfinals.
The 6-4 cornerstone of the Sarasota Crew and recent graduate of the Pine View School ripped through the water in 6:45.45 on Saturday after Wolff cruised the course in 6:50.2 on Friday. On Wednesday, the first day of the five-day regatta, Dean set the world mark in a heat race at 6:52.2.
Dean, who won the single sculls at the 2017 World Rowing Junior Championships in Trakai, Lithuania, held the record for 48 hours, lost it for a day, and then re-set the standard on Saturday.
“These boys singles are outrageous,” longtime Crew head coach Casey Galvanek said in a text message. “This entire event has a culmination of talent and great conditions. I have never witnessed this kind of talent in one location. Unreal is the best descriptor I can share.”
Australia’s Cormac Kennedy-Leverett took the early lead before a surging and determined Dean took the lead for good at 750 meters, and went on to win by more than six seconds. Wolff also won his semifinal race on Saturday.
The two will face each other head-to-head, along with Kennedy-Leverett, Tristan Vandenbussche of Belgium, Italy’s Gennaro DiMauro and Ivan Brynza of Belarus in Sunday’s single sculls final.
Galvanek, previously a rowing coach at the University of North Carolina and North Carolina State, figures his defending world champion will face a stiff challenge in the final.
In all, nine world records fell on Saturday during the semifinals.
“Performances were great today with rare exception,” said Galvanek, who is also the head coach of the Under-19 U.S. Junior Men’s National Team for 2018. “Clark had a great race, but will likely need more than he has already shown to come out on top of this elevated competition.”
Dean isn’t the only Crew member in the Czech Republic this week with Galvanek. Six of the 72 United States team members are also members of the Sarasota Crew.
The Crew’s Julia Braz was on board the women’s four that won its semifinal race on Saturday in 6:40.30, 1.86 seconds faster than Romania in second place, to make it Sunday’s final in that event.
Crew member Harrison Schofield is part of the eight-man boat that won its repechage on Saturday in order to qualify for Sunday’s final.
The Crew’s Alexander DeGrado is in the men’s four in a B final Sunday. Emory Sammons and Kristopher Schumann of the Crew are also in a B final Sunday as members of the men’s quad.