Among the latter – a single Augustas Navickas. The student of Klaipėda Rowing Center coach Tautvydas Vaitkūnas initially prepared for the most important fights of the year in Klaipėda, and from the beginning of March he trained in Gavirate (Italy).
According to Dainius Pavilionis, President of the Lithuanian Rowing Federation (LIF), since the country’s rowers already have three tickets to the Tokyo Olympic Games, they cannot participate in the European selection. Their goal is to be there in Varese on April 9-11. European Championships.
It will be attended by six Lithuanian crews: single rowers Viktorija Senkutė (coach Virgaudas Leknickas) and Armandas Kelmelis (trn. Vladislavas Sokolinskis), twin doubles – Donata Queen and Milda Valčiukaitė (trn. Virgaudas Leknickas) and Saulius Ritter and Mindaugas Griškonis (trn. Tomas Valčiukas and Robertas Tamulevičius), a pair of quadruples – Aurimas Adomavičius, Dominykas Jančionis, Dovydas Nemeravičius and Martynas Džiaugys (trn. Kęstutis Keblys) and a single quadruple – Mantas Juškevičius, brothers Povilas, Domantas and Dovydas Stankūnai (trn. Valdas Vilkelis and Zigmantas Gudauskas).
The reserve of the championship is Giedrius Bieliauskas rowing a single four-seater.
After the European Rowing Championships, the first stage of the World Cup (April 30 – May 2) will be held, where the crews who have already won tickets to the Tokyo Olympic Games will take place – men’s singles and men’s and women’s doubles.
The Olympic selection (May 15-17) will feature women’s singles and men’s singles and doubles.
Last Sunday, the President of LIF flew to Sabaudija (Italy), where the best Lithuanian rowers trained.
He and his coaches transport all the rowers’ belongings, trailers and boats to the championship in Varese. The Lithuanian national team will fly from the training camp to the championship by plane.
– The new Olympic season begins with the European Championship. How did the best Lithuanian rowers prepare for him? – we asked D. Pavilionis.
– We have been preparing for the new season since November last year.
In November and December, rowers trained in Trakai, and in the second half of December they went to the highlands to ski in Italy.
The athletes spent January, February and March in Sabaudia, Italy. The exercise took place in three cycles, each lasting three weeks.
After each of them, the rowers returned home for a short rest, checked their health, tested, managed their affairs, and returned to Italy.
I think the season is well prepared. When the coaches of the national team from Italy had returned for a short rest, they said that the control competitions held during the training camps showed that everything was going according to plan and their mood was optimistic.
However, it had to be experienced that health problems prevented Rolandas Maščinskas from pursuing the Olympic ticket for the second time, that Ieva Adomavičiūtė was awarded a two-year disqualification for violating doping rules.
– Will this championship be important to you – after all, Olympic tickets will not be distributed in it?
– The European Championships, like the Olympic Games and the World Championships, are very important to us.
The funding for the federation next year will depend on the performance of the rowers.
Successful performances at European and world championships and the Olympic Games give us considerable financial support.
– There are no two capable athletes I. Adomavičiūtė and R. Maščinskas in the national team, did the coaches have no problems forming crews?
– Roland, a top-level athlete, was one of the paired four-seater engines. It is a pity that he is no longer on the team.
Five rowers were preparing to paddle a pair of quadruples this season, so there was no need to look for a fourth rower after Roland left the crew.
The doubles quadruple won bronze medals at last year’s European Championships without Roland.
An extraordinary level rower and Eve. When there was a doping scandal and Milda Valčiukaitė was undergoing surgery, there were several sleepless nights.
It was a big headache to do: we have an Olympic license and we don’t have a team.
Suffering from the unknown, I drove to LTOK President Daina Gudzinevičiūtė, the head of the Lithuanian Olympic team joined Einius Petkus – we all sat and turned our heads to get out of such an extraordinary and difficult situation.
I would overwhelm all the young rowers who could replace the crew leaders and have them as a backup.
Thank God Donata Queen decided to go back to rowing and now shows fantastic results, rowing heavily and Milda.
I think everything will be fine, only very unfortunate for Eve, who can swim in the second Olympics.
– Did Queen D. also participate in all training camps?
– She started training in Trakai in December, did not go skiing in the mountains, and since January she has been in all training camps in Sabaudia.
– R. Maščinskas had a health problem before the second Olympic Games, so I would like to ask you: what did the physiotherapists of the team do then, did they not see that the athlete needed rest?
– Roland had health problems before, they have worsened since the autumn. The athlete complained that the whole force could not perform the tests.
Roland’s health was examined by high-level doctors and the council decided he needed to be at rest for three months. He is now under medical supervision.
The Lithuanian rowing team used to be forced and pressed to train all the time, it was not allowed to rest normally.
We were glad that the team was consulted by an Italian Giovanni Postiglione, but his training methods led to the team’s rowers starting to withstand heavy loads.
Giedrius Bieliauskas, Armandas Kelmelis were retrained, Dovydas Nemeravičius, Martynas Džiaugys and Aurimas Adomavičius were on the border.
Health must be protected, very careful work with heavy loads. In the last eight months of 2019, the team did not visit either scientists or doctors. And the workout loads were constantly increasing. As our crews lost, they grew even more.
When the rowers started complaining and I started supporting them, I got bad.
Now that the team is led by our coaches and athletes working at regular rates, after each training camp, the researchers do research for them, so there are no health problems.
At the Lithuanian Medical Center, our rowers are supervised by doctor Gražina Bosaitė, the team works with doctor Mantvydas Šilkūnas and two physiotherapists Rasa Batulevičiūtė and Liudoslavas Adamovičius, whom I persuaded to return to rowing again after the family grew up.
This great physiotherapist also spends a lot of time with our young rowers.
During the training camps, our medics all changed, one or the other.
– Have you already received the first information from the International Court of Arbitration for Sport, where Ms Adomavičiūtė’s appeal against her two-year disqualification should be considered?
– So far we have received only one reply that our complaint has been accepted. I’m looking for help for an athlete because I can’t do it officially through the federation.
There is a human factor: I know that the athlete has fallen into a difficult situation by mistake and is not one of those who has specifically used some illicit drugs to improve her training or competition results, so I try to help her.
I understand all the actions of the Anti-Doping Commission: yes, a banned drug was found in Eve’s body and a decision was made.
Dalius Barkauskas, a doctor of the Lithuanian Olympic team, expressed his opinion on all these substances.
If the rower is now sitting without any funding and money and is under pressure to train, someone needs to help her a little.
I am looking for options on how to find and help them. Through public relations, Facebook offers a lot of athletes financial and moral help to Eve.
– What are the challenges for rowers during the European Championships?
– For those who have tickets to the Tokyo Olympics, the coaches have arranged everything so that the peak of their athletic form is precisely through them.
Lucerne, the last Olympic qualifier, will be waiting for the losers. I can’t say that our rowers are 110 percent maximally prepared for the European Championships, which is one of the stages in preparation for other important tests.
There hasn’t been much competition this year, so it will be interesting to see how our rowers look like they are adapting to fighting in such conditions.
Control competitions are control, and when you are not playing much, there is a psychological state, a lot of excitement.
This European Championship will be a great test of strength for all after all the hardships and fears of a pandemic.
– Will the rowers return to Lithuania after the European Championship?
– No, they will stay in Italy and will continue their training camp near Varese.
Those who have won the right to participate in the Tokyo Olympics will take part in the first round of the World Cup in Zagreb.
All rowers will already be taking part in the second round of the World Cup in Lucerne in mid-May, as it will be the last Olympic qualifier in Tokyo.
Viktorija Senkutė, a men’s doubles and singles, as well as singles, singles and singles, will seek tickets in the selection.
– What are their options?
– We mostly expect from the men’s pair of quadruples, where two crews will get to Tokyo.
A miracle must happen if the crew does not win tickets to the Olympics. A lot of optimism was given in 2019 during the European Championship, when “renovated and reconstructed” and recovered morally and physically, our crew of four pairs was the third of 12 teams.
Only some kind of accident or accident to our men can prevent Tokyo. During the Olympics, they are able to fight for medals.