The World Rowing Championships is an international rowing regatta organized by FISA (the International Rowing Federation). It is a week-long event held at the end of the northern hemisphere summer and in non-Olympic years is the highlight of the international rowing calendar.
The first event was held in Lucerne, Switzerland, in 1962. The event then was held every four years until 1974, when it became an annual competition. Also in 1974, Men's lightweight and Women's open weight events were added to the championships. In 1985 Women's lightweight events were added to the schedule.
Since 1996, during (Summer) Olympic years, the Junior World Rowing Championships are held at the same time.
In 2002 adaptive rowing events were introduced for the following classes of disability: LTA (legs, trunk and arms), TA (trunk, arms), and A (arms-only). In 2009 the A category was replaced by AS (arms and shoulders), and an ID (intellectually disabled) category was added.
Rowing takes place in 21 different boat classes, apart from during Olympic years when only non-Olympic boat classes race. National teams generally take less interest in the non-Olympic events, as the Olympic events are considered the "premier" events.
The table below shows the boat classes, "O" indicates the boat races at both the Olympics and World Championships. "WC" indicates this is only a World Championship event. After 2007, the coxed fours (4+) no longer runs as a world championship event. Similarly after 2011 the women's coxless four was no longer included, but it was reintroduced in 2013.
|Boat||Men||Lwt Men||Women||Lwt Women|
|Times Hosted||Host Country|
|4||Switzerland, Canada, Great Britain, Germany|
|2||New Zealand, Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Austria, Spain, France|
|1||South Korea, Denmark, Australia, Czech Republic, United States, Finland, Croatia, Japan, Poland, Slovenia, Bulgaria|
|Matthew Pinsent||Great Britain||1970||10||0||2||12|
|Steve Redgrave||Great Britain||1962||9||2||1||12|
|Giuseppe Di Capua||Italy||1958||8||2||1||11|