Beighton and Scowen book final spot

01 September 2012 / 15:18

Nick Beighton and Samantha Scowen won their TA mixed double sculls repechage to ensure all three British crews will be in Paralympic rowing finals on Sunday.

AS single sculler Tom Aggar, the dominant reigning Paralympic champion, and Britain's world champion LTA mixed coxed four won their heats on Friday to qualify directly for the finals.

Beighton and Scowen faced the repechage after finishing second behind the French crew, who won the heat in a new world record time.

The British crew built on their impressive first race by winning the repechage by nearly two seconds from Italy to complete a full complement of host nation finalists.

"We had a really nice race today, we were happy with how we've performed," said Beighton, a captain in the army who was injured in Afghanistan under three years ago. "We wanted to put a marker down and say 'right, this is what we can do and move on everyday'.

"We needed to get a win there to get a good lane in the final and that's what we've done."

Beighton had never raced before teaming up with Scowen, who was born with a short right femur, at last year's world championships in Bled, when they finished sixth to qualify for the Paralympics.

It was in October 2009 that Beighton lost his legs in an explosion while serving as a captain with the Royal Engineers in Helmand Province. Beighton began to row as part of his rehabilitation and was recruited into the GB Rowing set-up after being spotted at a Paralympic talent identification day.

"Chance plays a part in all our lives and you just go with it," Beighton said. "It's bad luck when you step on an IED (improvised explosive device), good luck when you reach a Paralympic final. Coming into Bled last year was a bit of a rush, to actually get in a boat and learn to scull properly. I'd only been in a boat for about six months.

"I'm a completely different sculler to that now and as a unit we are a completely different boat. We are really confident and happy that we've moved on since then. We're looking forward to tomorrow just to do ourselves proud."