Leyden and Britain's rowing quad to take on Worlds after European gold

·2-min read
The athletes from Great Britain celebrating at the flower ceremony in Munich, Germany. Photo: Matthias Balk / Munich2022 (Matthias Balk / Munich2022)

Jess Leyden and Britain’s quadruple scullers waltzed to multi-sport European Championship glory then roared – bring on the Worlds writes Will Jennings.

Todmorden rower Leyden, 27, joined forces with Lucy Glover, Lola Anderson and Georgie Brayshaw to beat the Netherlands in Munich on a super Saturday for British Rowing.

Their gold medal marked one of four won by Britain on the day – including three in a row – as the women’s quadruple scullers’ dominant display built further momentum ahead of next month’s World Championships in Racice.

The British crew revelled in their German victory but admit emulating their exploits in the Czech Republic remains their No.1 priority.

Leyden said: “We’ve worked so hard for this.

“We’ve changed what we wanted to change and it’s really paying off now.

“Looking back on the field was really nice.”

Brayshaw, 29, added: “It’s amazing and I’m absolutely buzzing – I want to cry.

“But this makes me so hungry for the World Championships in September.

“I actually can’t wait and now, I’m so hungry for it.

“I’m so happy and it’s so surreal to win today.”

For the second edition in 2022, the multi-sports European Championships bring together the existing championships of the continent’s leading sports into one event that elevates the champions of Europe.

Rowing kicked off the 11-day German bonanza on Thursday morning, with cycling, gymnastics and sport climbing also featuring.

Athletics gets underway at Munich’s iconic Olympic Stadium on Monday while triathlon, canoe sprint, table tennis and beach volleyball enter the fray across staggered days.

Exactly 177 gold medals are on offer at the event and Leyden was thrilled to get her hands on one after a dominant German display.

Britain breezed past Switzerland in Thursday’s heats as a time of 7:09.73 marked them out as the team to beat the Saturday’s final.

And they delivered when the pressure was on to down the Dutch, Ukrainians, Swiss, Italians and Germans to be crowned champions of Europe in style.

Britain also grabbed golds in the men’s and women’s four and men’s eight events on a memorable day at Munich’s 1972 Olympic Regatta Centre.

Anderson added: “We’ve had quite a disruptive season – we’ve had different combinations but we’ve just tried to keep it simple and get as much out of it as possible.

“We had two solid races here and we’re four very happy girls.”

The multi-sport European Championships Munich 2022, featuring Athletics, Beach Volleyball, Canoe Sprint, Cycling, Gymnastics, Table Tennis, Triathlon, Rowing, Sport Climbing, takes place 11th-21st August on the 50th anniversary of the Olympics Games in the Germany city. Watch daily live coverage across BBC One, Two, Red Button, BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport website