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United States Dominates Rowing in Santiago 2023

The USA surpassed the two medals they won at Lima 2019 by far.

With over an hour’s delay due to the dense fog that at times darkened the Laguna Grande de San Pedro de la Paz, the rowing competition at the 2023 Pan American Games came to an end.

The United States and Chile’s delegations remained strong, leading the overall medal count for rowing. Although the day started with non-medal competitions, the unpredictable weather in the Biobio region disrupted the logistics and the finals began as soon as the fog began to clear.

With a time of 7:02.11 in the first race of the day, the USA’s boat, with crew members Veronica Nicasio and Madeleine Focht, ended Chile’s hopes in the women’s double sculls (W2x) category and won the gold medal. Melita and Antonia Abraham, representing the local delegation, earned silver with a time of 7:03.74, while Alizee Brien and Caroline de Paiva of Team Canada claimed bronze in 7:13.74.

Moments later, Uruguay pulled off a surprise with Newton Seawright and Martin Zocalo, rowers who took the gold in the men’s double sculls (M2x) category with a time of 6:22.07.

“I’m very happy with the race we had, although the competition was quite close. It was the medal we were missing and we went for it and succeeded. I feel tremendous emotion; we closed with a golden touch,” said Zocalo.

Following that, Kenia Lechuga, a recent silver medalist at the Rowing World Championships in Belgrade, lived up to her credentials and secured the gold in the women’s single sculls (W1x) category with a time of 7:44.63. Beatriz Cunha from Brazil claimed silver in 7:46.73 and Nicole Martinez from Paraguay took bronze in 7:47.29.

In the men’s single sculls (M1x) category, Brazil’s Lucas Verthein won the gold with a time of 6:58.76, one second faster than James Plihal from the United States, who claimed silver in 6:59.93. The bronze went to the Mexican and recent Central American champion, Juan Jose Flores, with a time of 7:01.27.

To cap it all off, Team USA’s boat secured the last and first gold medal in the history of the Pan American Games, awarded in the coxed eight (8+) mixed category with a time of 5:54.26. Chile took silver with 5:55.17 and Cuba claimed bronze with a time of 5:58.50. With these results, USA’s rowing delegation tops the overall medal standings after earning four golds, three silvers and one bronze, far exceeding their performance at Lima 2019, where they won just two medals.


The final day of rowing in the Biobio Region was filled with emotions. With two new silver medals, Chile’s delegation positioned itself as the second-best team in the competition and beat the number of medals obtained in the previous participation at Lima 2019.

The first medal was awarded in the women’s double sculls (W2x), where the Abraham twins, Antonia and Melita, used their experience to secure the silver medal in 7:03.74, very close to the USA’s gold-winning time of 7:02.11.

The mixed 8 with coxswain crew completed the day and Chile’s participation in rowing at Santiago 2023 by winning the first silver medal in the history of the Pan American Games in this category. With a time of 5:55.17, Oscar Vasquez, Magdalena Nannig, Isidora Soto, Francisco Lapostol, Victoria Hostteter and the Abraham quadruplets, Antonia, Melita, Ignacio and Alfredo, wrote their names into the nation’s history.

Team Chile topped the number of medals won in the 2019 Pan American Games, where they won four golds, two silvers and two bronzes.


  1. United States – 5 golds, 4 silvers, and 1 bronze = 8 medals
  2. Chile – 3 golds, 5 silvers, and 2 bronzes = 9 medals
  3. Uruguay – 2 golds, 2 silvers, and 1 bronze = 5 medals
  4. Mexico – 2 golds, 0 silvers, and 4 bronzes = 6 medals
  5. Cuba – 1 gold, 2 silvers, and 1 bronze = 4 medals
  6. Canada – 1 gold, 1 silver, and 2 bronzes = 4 medals
  7. Argentina – 0 golds, 0 silvers, and 2 bronzes = 2 medals
  8. Paraguay – 0 golds, 0 silvers, and 2 bronzes = 2 medals 

Source : Panam Sports