- Associated Press - Friday, September 4, 2015

AIGUEBELETTE, France (AP) - Grace Luczak earned a third career gold medal at the world rowing championships as the American women’s four powered to victory on Friday.

Luczak won eights finals at the previous two worlds.

Her crew including Kristine O’Brien, Grace Latz, and Olympic bronze medalist Adrienne Martelli made a good start and was never threatened on Lake Aiguebelette. Britain took silver ahead of China.

“It’s amazing to be world champion, I feel blessed and honored to train and race with my teammates,” O’Brien said.

After gold medals in the men’s coxed pair and lightweight pair, Britain moved to the top of the medal table ahead of Germany and Australia, with seven podium places.

In the lightweight pair final, Joel Cassells and Sam Scrimgeour accelerated at the 500-meter mark to beat local favorites Augustin Mouterde and Theophile Onfroy of France, with Germany ending third.

“I have had three really good pair partners this season but this takes the biscuit,” Scrimgeour said.

British pair Matthew Tarrant and Nathaniel Reilly-O’Donnell, coxed by Henry Fieldman, led from the start to defeat Germany and Serbia.

Spurred on by their home crowd, Maxime de Montfaucon, Damien Piqueras, Pierre Houin and Morgan Maunoir took the lead with only three strokes left in the lightweight quadruple sculls final to head off Germany.

“It was a crazy race. I make the calls and I asked for more,” Demontfaucon said. “To hear the crowd at home really helped us to win.”

The first of two days of Olympic class finals starts on Saturday.

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