World Under-23 Rowing Championships Day Five: UVa's O'Brien Wins Gold

July 15, 2012

TRAKAI, Lithuania-Virginia rowing rising senior Kristine O'Brien earned gold with the United States in the women's eight on the final day of the 2012 World Under-23 Rowing Championships Sunday (July 15) in Trakai, Lithuania.

O'Brien and the American women's eight cruised to a gold medal in the grand final, winning in a time of 6:25.92, almost five seconds quicker than second place Germany (6:30.47). O'Brien, who was in the stroke seat, placed seventh with the women's quadruple sculls at last year's World Under-23s.

"Words just can't describe my feelings now," O'Brien told WorldRowing.com right after the race.

O'Brien was a part of the Cavaliers' varsity eight that captured the NCAA Championship in May, as well as the Championship Eights' title at the Head of the Charles in the fall.

In other action, incoming freshman Holly Nixon and Irish teammate Laura D'Urso won the women's double sculls petite final (seventh overall) in a time of 7:28.40. In the same race, graduated senior Cara Linnenkohl and rising junior Carli Goldberg placed fourth (10th overall) in 7:38.89.

Overall, a record seven current, former and incoming Cavaliers competed at the World Under-23s. Rising senior Susanne Grainger and former Cavalier Christine Roper won gold Saturday (July 14) with Canada in the women's four. Graduate senior Martha Kuzzy finished 10th overall with the U.S. in the women's quadruple sculls.

"What a great accomplishment for Kristine, Susanne and Christine," Virginia head coach Kevin Sauer said. "We are very proud of them and Martie, Cara, Carli and Holly as well."

Virginia at the World Under-23 Rowing Championships
Women's Eight - Kristine O'Brien (USA) - Gold
Women's Four - Susanne Grainger and Christine Roper (CAN) - Gold
Women's Double Sculls - Holly Nixon (IRL) - 7th (petite final winner)
Women's Double Sculls - Carli Goldberg and Cara Linnenkohl (USA) - 10th
Women's Quadruple Sculls - Martha Kuzzy (USA) - 10th