King's Sixth Form

4 March

Alice takes silver at the World Rowing Indoor Championships

On Saturday 27th February, Alice Baker (L6, CA) competed in the gruelling 2000 metre race at the World Rowing Indoor Championships, hosted by the international governing body of Rowing, having gained her qualification place back in December 2020.

Over the last few months, athletes from all over the globe had to go through qualification rounds. The top twenty athletes were invited to compete at the pinnacle of indoor rowing competitions.

Alice competed in the Under 19 Women’s race despite being only 16. Her race was held at 12.23 CET, with athletes racing at their local time on machines linked online.

Alice started strongly and set a blistering pace throughout, leading the field for much of the race, with fellow Brit and British Indoor Champion Meg Knight of Doncaster, hot on her heels. The exciting race went right to the wire, with the British girls crossing the line only a fraction of a second apart and Alice taking a silver medal and second in the World!

The early pace set by Alice ensured both girls broke the seven-minute barrier, an extraordinary performance for Junior Women.

The top five places were then filled by competitors from Belarus, Germany, and Tunisia.

Alice was so delighted with her performance, breaking the seven-minute mark as her primary goal, she seemed surprised by becoming a World Silver Medallist.

Alice has undertaken most of her training in solitude, spending relentless hours in her garage on her rowing machine, missing the company and vibrancy of training with her squad at school. She is no stranger to the grind of the ergometer, currently holding no less than four British Records on the Concept 2 Rower. She is a formidable force.

The Championships had to move to a virtual format this year, with previous events in California and Paris. We know Alice will be keen to qualify again next year when the usual format will return for Hamburg in 2022. Her focus will now move to rowing disciplines on the water as the nation unlocks and she looks to gain selection for the team representing Great Britain at the 2021 Under-19 World Rowing Championships.

Alice said of her success ‘ I’m thrilled with my result at the weekend. It was a great experience to compete internationally against the top athletes in my age group from around the world and I can’t wait to get back on the water, hopefully I’ll be competing against them in a boat soon! It’s been quite challenging motivating myself in lockdown over the past few months but I’m so glad the training has paid off and going sub 7 minutes is a huge milestone for me. I wouldn’t have been able to do it without all the support from my family and friends, especially the Boat Club and my coaches!’

Head of Rowing, Mr Chalmers said “We are incredibly proud of Alice and her quite magnificent achievement. She is an extremely talented athlete, who possesses a terrific work ethic that permeates her academic and sporting life. Her determination and positive attitude are an inspiration to us all.”