Cornelia Willis Finishes Fourth at World Championships
TRAKAI GALVE, LITHUANIA - After besting her opponents here in the United States, Cornelia Willis and her Women's Lightweight 4x team traveled halfway across the world for the chance of a lifetime. Willis rowed for GMS Rowing out of Connecticut, and competed alongside teammates Carolina Paini, Sarah Giancola and Samantha Brecht. The team finished fourth in the championship race with a time of 7:44.59, just missing out on a medal.
Germany took the gold, Italy won silver, and the Netherlands placed third.
"This has been a tremendous learning experience. We had little to no experience with sculling and were still competitive at an international level - a testament to our passion for this sport and our willingness to push our comfort zones to become better athletes," Willis said. "Although it didn't necessarily provide the outcome we had hoped for, I am far fitter and ready to move forward, train harder, and combine my dreams of rowing and medical school."
While the results and the race itself will forever be a fond memory for Willis and her team, the opportunity meant even more.
"I am taking so much more from this experience than just rowing techniques. I have forged strong friendships, developed an understanding of international competition, and developed an awareness of just how much farther I can go," Willis said.