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Olympic dreams over for four and eight

Olympic dreams over for four and eight

New Zealand's lightweight four and heavyweight men's eight have both failed to qualify for the Olympic Regatta in London after their final throws of the dice in the A Finals at the Last Chance Regatta this morning in Lucerne, Switzerland.

The lightweight four finished third behind the USA and the Netherlands, missing out on one of the two qualifying places by just a second and a half. The men's eight were also knocked out by a USA crew, finishing four seconds down and in second place, with just the winners to qualify for London. It continues a long run of Olympic appearances for the USA eight, but meant heartbreak for the young Kiwi crew.

Both the four and the eight started well, but could not make an impression on the crews filling the vital qualifying spots.

The four of Duncan Grant, Graham Oberlin Brown, James Lassche and Curtis Rapley came closest, fighting back from fourth place at the start to be level with the Netherlands and Serbia with 500 metres to go.

In the final 500 metres, their sprint, which had been beaten on both occasions they have needed to use it in races, let them down again and the Netherlands were able to carve out the small, but hugely significant margin that would bring them home second and take them, and the race winners from the USA to London. Serbia were outsprinted, but third place wasn't enough for New Zealand.


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