Thomas triumphs in the long-busting opening round of the World Rowing Championships

Graeme Thomas is competing in the quarterfinals of the World Championships today after surviving a ‘lung rupturing’ opening round in the men’s singles at the World Rowing Championships in Racice.

The Preston native finished the 2000m in Monday’s race in 6:49.93, three seconds ahead of Norway’s Kjetil Borch, with Poland’s Piotr Plominski in third place.

A veteran contender with three world championship medals as a quadruple rower, Thomas now thrives in Einschiff and believes the solo venture gets the most of its accomplishments.

“It’s boom or bust,” he said. “It’s entirely up to you, whatever you do is your responsibility and I kind of like that – you get what you put into it and that’s a nice feeling.

“I enjoy it, it’s been on the bucket list for a long time. I didn’t think this was the year, but here I am.

“I get paid to go and try to win medals for GB so that’s exactly what I’m going to try and do.”

Thomas braced himself for an unusual start time for his run and is now hoping to maintain his momentum as the Lancashire ace competes in the second of four quarter-finals from 9.07am.

“I was really happy to knock out the first one with a win, it wasn’t easy,” he said.

“Usually the individual race is around lunchtime so it was a bit of a lung spasm that it was so early, but the first race is always.

“You’ve never warmed up here, it’s a new venue so there’s all these little things that go into the mix to make things a little bit more unknown.

“I was pushed to the end, Kjetil had a little try there at the end but I just held it back and I’m happy with that.

“It’s all about keeping your head down to keep the process going and hopefully keep going through the regatta.”

British Rowing is responsible for the development of rowing in England and the training and selection of rowers to represent Britain. The GB Rowing Team is supported by the National Lottery Sports Fund. To find out more and follow the ongoing World Championships in Racice go to

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