List of world records in rowing

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The Rowing World Records are the fastest times set over the international rowing distance of 2000 m. They are believed to be correct as of 14/7/2013.

On Water Records[edit]

Rowing times are strongly affected by weather conditions, and to a lesser extent by water temperature - the majority of the these times were set in warm water with a strong tailwind. World best rowing times have also decreased because of improvements in technology to both the boats and the oars, along with improvements in the conditioning of the rowers.

Because environmental conditions have a strong impact on boat speed, FISA, recognizes world best times instead of world records. A world best time is one recorded on a regatta course that has previously held the World Championships, Olympic Games, or World Cup since 1980. A number of record times were set at the 2005 World Championships held on the Nagara River at Kaizu, Gifu Prefecture, Japan, but due to a fast current caused by heavy rainfall from the remnants of Typhoon Mawar, FISA declared that the race results were not eligible to be considered as world best times.

There is a category for lightweight rowing. For men the crew average, wearing racing kit, cannot exceed 70 kg (154 lb) and no rower may be over 72.5 kg (160 lb). For women the limits are 57 kg (126 lb) and 59 kg (130 lb).[1]


Boat Time Crew Nation Date Meet Location Ref
Single sculls
6:33.35 Mahé Drysdale New Zealand New Zealand 2009 Poznań, Poland
Coxless pairs
6:08.50 Hamish Bond
Eric Murray
New Zealand New Zealand 2012 Summer Olympics Eton Dorney, England [2]
Coxed pairs
6:42.16 Igor Boraska
Tihomir Franković
Milan Razov (coxswain)
Croatia Croatia 1994 Indianapolis, United States
Double sculls
6:03.25 Adrien Hardy
Jean-Baptiste Macquet
France France 2006 Poznań, Poland
Coxless four
5:37.86 Andrew Triggs-Hodge
Tom James
Pete Reed
Alex Gregory
United Kingdom Great Britain 2012 Lucerne, Switzerland
Coxed four
5:58.96 Matthias Ungemach
Armin Eichholz
Armin Weyrauch
Bahne Rabe
Joerg Dederding (coxswain)
Germany Germany 1991 Vienna, Austria
Quad sculls
5:33.15 Vladislav Ryabcev
Alexey Svirin
Nikita Morgachev
Sergei Fedorovtsev
Russia Russia 2012 Lucerne,Switzerland
5:19.35 Gabriel Bergen
Douglas Csima
Robert Gibson
Conlin McCabe
Malcolm Howard
Andrew Byrnes
Jeremiah Brown
Will Crothers
Brian Price (coxswain)
Canada Canada 2012 Lucerne, Switzerland
Lightweight single sculls
6:46.93 Jeremie Azou France France 2011 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Lightweight coxless pairs
6:26.21 Tony O'Connor
Neville Maxwell
Republic of Ireland Ireland 1994 Paris, France
Lightweight double sculls
6:10.02 Mads Rasmussen
Rasmus Quist
Denmark Denmark 2007 Amsterdam, Netherlands
Lightweight coxless four
5:45.60 Thomas Poulsen
Thomas Ebert
Eskild Ebbesen
Victor Feddersen
Denmark Denmark 1999 Lucerne, Switzerland
Lightweight quad sculls
5:45.18 Francesco Esposito
Massimo Lana
Michelangelo Crispi
Massimo Guglielmi
Italy Italy 1992 Montreal, Canada
Lightweight eight
5:30.24 Klaus Altena
Christian Dahlke
Thomas Melges
Bernhard Stomporowski
Michael Kobor
Uwe Maerz
Michael Buchheit
Kai von Warburg
Olaf Kaska (coxswain)
Germany Germany 1992 Montreal, Canada

The greatest distance rowed in 24 hours (upstream and downstream) is 295.2 km (183.4 miles) by Ansgar John Brenninkmeijer, Gert Jan Keizer, Oscar Dinkelaar, Jacques Klok, Jeroen van Renesse, Hans-Jan Rijbering (all Netherlands) on the Amstel river, Amsterdam, Netherlands, on 14-15 June 2013.

All six participants are members of the Royal Amsterdam Rowing and Sailing Club 'De Hoop'.[3]


Boat Time Crew Nation Year Meet Location Ref
Single sculls
7:07.71 Rumyana Neykova Bulgaria Bulgaria 2002 Seville, Spain
Coxless pairs
6:53.80 Georgeta Andrunache
Viorica Susanu
Romania Romania 1999 Lucerne, Switzerland
Double sculls
6:38.78 Georgina Evers-Swindell
Caroline Evers-Swindell
New Zealand New Zealand 2002 Seville, Spain
Coxless four
6:25.35 Kate Hornsey
Amber Bradley
Jo Lutz
Robyn Selby Smith
Australia Australia 2006 Eton, England
Quad sculls
6:09.38 Julia Richter
Carina Baer
Tina Manker
Stephanie Schiller
Germany Germany 2012 Lucerne, Switzerland
5:54.16 Amanda Polk
Kerry Simmonds
Emily Regan
Lauren Schmetterling
Grace Luczak
Caroline Lind
Victoria Opitz
Heidi Robbins
Katelin Snyder (coxswain)
United States United States 2013 Lucerne, Switzerland [4]
Lightweight single sculls
7:28.15 Constanţa Burcică Romania Romania 1994 Paris, France
Lightweight coxless pairs
7:18.32 Eliza Blair
Justine Joyce
Australia Australia 1997 Lac d'Aiguebelette, France
Lightweight double sculls
6:49.43 Louise Ayling
Julia Edward
New Zealand New Zealand 2012 Lucerne, Switzerland
Lightweight quadruple sculls
6:23.96 Liu Jing
Fan Xuefei
Chen Haixia
Yu Hua (rower)
China China 2006 Eton, England

Indoor Records[edit]

Category Time Split Nation Year Name
Open Men 5:36.6 1:24.1 New Zealand New Zealand 2008 Rob Waddell
Lightweight Men 5:56.7 1:29.175 Denmark Denmark 2013 Henrik Stephansen
Open Women 6:28.4 1:37.1 France France 2005 Sophie Balmary
Lightweight Women 6:54.7 1:43.7 United States United States 2010 Ursula Grobler
  • Lwt Men: 75 kg (165 lb) maximum weight
  • Lwt Women: 61.5 kg (136 lb) maximum weight [5]

Note: the standard machine for indoor records is the Concept2 indoor rower. "Split" refers to the average time to complete 500 m (i.e. the 2000 m time divided by 4).