Olympics Summer

Men's Lightweight Double Sculls

Who to look out for in men's lightweight double sculls

Name Zac Purchase (b), Mark Hunter (s)
Country Great Britain
Credentials

Great Britain's crew won bronze at the world championships last year and won the final world cup this year. "They've shown they'll contend for a medal in Beijing. They have been the most consistent performers in this event this season," CBC analyst Barney Williams said.

Name Mads Rasmussen (b), Rasmus Quist (s) 
Country Denmark
Credentials As defending world champions, this team entered this season as the favourites for Beijing, Williams said. However, a terrible world cup season has seen them fail to make the podium and leaves huge questions heading into Beijing.

Name Storm Uru (b), Peter Taylor (s)
Country New Zealand
Credentials As newcomers to the event this year, they showed great speed in finishing second to Great Britain at the Lucerne world cup. They then went on to comfortably win the Olympic qualifier.

Name Maxime Goisset (b), Frederic Dufour (s)
Country France
Credentials A bronze medal at the Lucerne world cup shows that this pair has found new speed this season and are ready to make a push for the podium.  

On a roll

Great Britain has been the one crew that has consistently found the podium over the past couple of seasons and head to Beijing unbeaten this season.

On a slide

Despite Greece having made a regular appearance in the finals the past couple of years, this crew has been slipping further and further from the podium.

X-factor

"With Hungary's multiple world championship medals, it's hard to bet against them showing up on the day," Williams said. He also noted that they recently returned to racing and have yet to reach the podium in any of these races.

Under the radar

This season has seen two crews from Italy battle for the Olympic spot and once this selection is complete the emerging crew may be able to settle down and find the necessary speed to sneak onto the podium, Williams said.

The Canadians

Canada recently took advantage of the extra qualifying spot at the Olympic qualifier.  Doug Vandor and Cam Sylvester are a new combination this year and will be aiming for a top-10 performance in Beijing.

The lowdown

This event, like all lightweight events, will see a very close finish, Williams said. "There is little to separate the top four or five crews given that they are all about the same size," he said. Experience may be the decisive factor, which means the Danish have the advantage in this area.

Williams predicts the race to unfold as follows:

"Expect Great Britain and Italy to start fast with the Danish and New Zealanders close behind.  By the 1000-metre mark, the Danish and New Zealanders should have closed level with the British and these three boats will head to the last 500-metre mark with the lead.  The final sprint will be tight with the Greeks and the French trying to sneak on the podium. Italy may be able to find a final push and overtake New Zealand with Denmark and Great Britain on top of the podium."

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