Sport

Jamaican repeats gold at World Under-23 Rowing Champs

Monday, July 23, 2012    

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JAMAICAN Christine Roper was a part of the history making Canadian Under-23 Women's Rowing team which won their second straight gold medal in the Women's Eight at the World Rowing Under-23 Championships in Lithuania recently.

Roper is now being highly touted as a future star and figures to be one of Canada's top medal prospects going into the 2016 Olympics.

The Canadian team won in a creditable time, repeating their 2011 performance with a strong performance that proved unstoppable.

Christine is the daughter of Brian Roper, General Manager of Sandals Grande Riviera, and he was beaming with pride after her historic repeat win.

"It's a fantastic achievement," Roper noted in an interview last week. "Christine has trained really hard and dedicated herself to the sport and she is now reaping the fruits of her labour.

"Even while on holiday in Jamaica she always puts in time in the gym and remains a dedicated and fearless competitor," Roper noted.

According to the Canadian coach Michelle Darvill: "The team got off to a very strong start, with the New Zealand crew, who managed to hold on for almost halfway. The Canadians decisively moved away from them and the rest of the field at the 1,000m and never looked back."

Coach Darvill noted that "Christine has proven to be a great racer. She is one of the most highly decorated U23 athletes (two gold and a bronze) and will certainly be a key player in the senior team going towards the 2016 Olympics." Her focus and determination kept everyone on track in putting in 100 per cent every stroke and believing that they could do this.

Young Roper started her rowing career at Kent School in Connecticut, winning every award and championship in New England. She then moved on to University of Virginia, winning the coveted NCAA championships in 2010.

Roper has had a highly decorated career as in 2008 she was on the Canadian Junior National Team winning gold at the Canamex Games.

For the past three years she has represented Canada in their U23 team, first winning bronze then gold in a World Record Time in the W8+ (women's 8). This year she competed for the first time in the BW4- (women's 4 without cox) and won gold for her third medal in three years.

Her plans are to return to Ontario to begin her Olympic quest.

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