Ever since its introduction at the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi, rowing has been a part of the Asiad programme over 10 editions, and it will be competed at the 19th edition in Hangzhou as well.
Rowing is a dynamic sport, offering different styles of racing across mutiple individual and team events.
While its jargon can seem confusing to a layman, the races take place in a simple sequence. Here is all you need to know about the rowing events taking place at the 2023 Asian Games.
TYPES OF RACES
Sculls: A sculls race includes a higher number of oars. Each member on the boat controls and works two oars - one in each hand. These types of races have individual, pairs, and quadruples races.
In sculls, the pairs events also have a lightweight category.
Coxed/Coxless: The second type of rowing allows each member to use just one oar. As a result, team members within the overall team form a unit to operate oars on one side of the boat. For example, in an eights race, four members of the team will control oars on the left side of the boat, and the other four will control the oars on the right side.
Naturally, this type of racing does not allow for individuals to compete. It is contested in pairs, fours and eights.
The second sub-division in this category is coxed and coxless. A coxswain is essentially a navigator. Not allowed to use an oar, they simply steer the boat. Hence, every coxed race has an additional member on the boat.
In the Asian Games, the pairs and fours races are coxless events while the eights is coxed.
The rounds of qualification in rowing depend upon the number of teams participating in a particular category.
Heats: The first round across all competitions is the heats. The winner of each heat advances to the final or the semifinals depending upon the number of teams.
Repechage: Rowing offers a second chance to teams to qualify for the finals. The winners of the repechage rounds qualify for the Final A while the remaining teams go to Final B, C and so on.
Finals: The final round in a rowing category has mutiple finals. Only one of these - Final A - has medals up for grabs. It is essentially what determines the top six teams. The next final - Final B - is to determine the 7-12th places. If an event has Final C, it is used to determine the 13-18th places.
At times, events also have a semifinal round before the final. This is usually the case when more teams are taking part in the event.
The distance covered across all rowing races remains the same. Every race in rowing is 2 kilometeres, or 2000 meters, long.
NUMBER OF TEAMS IN ONE RACE
Across all events, only six teams take part in every race. The number of heats and repechage rounds are hence decided by the number of teams participating. ‘
Example: An event with 30 enteries will have five heats.
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