OLYMPIAN Sam Beltz will use this weekend's Rowing Tasmania state pennant regatta at Franklin in the state's South to launch his bid for a third Games appearance in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
Beltz, of the Lindisfarne Rowing Club, will be joined by world champions in the lightweight eight, Ali Foot (of Tamar) Darryn Purcell (TIS) and Nick Silcox (TIS).
Joining Beltz in launching an Olympic campaign will be Kerry Hore, who is back after a taking time out following the London Games.
Hore will come up against lightweight rowers from Huon including Sarah Hawe and Eve Mure in the women's senior single, with Ciona Wilson (Tamar) and Lucy Jordan (Buckingham) also in contention.
In the para rowing, Buckingham club's Joe Chivers has been working hard to achieve his dream of competing at the Rio Paralympics and should enjoy a good single scull race against Isaac Denholm, of Hutchins, Glenorchy's Mitchell Huxley and Nicole McKillop and Lindisfarne's king of the Derwent, Dave Emmet.
Chivers and Denholm will also compete in the double scull against Huxley and McKillop.
School holidays have impacted on the number of entries, with only 214 competing, about a quarter of the usual number.
Buckingham club has won the state pennant for the past six years in a row, but this season has been disadvantaged by having to train out of temporary accommodation at Incat while the multimillion-dollar Newtown Bay Rowing Complex is completed.
While the club is still expected to field top-class crews across all age groups, challenges will come from Huon, University, Tamar and North Esk.
A number of junior crews from Ulverstone, North Esk, Buckingham, Tamar, Lindisfarne and New Norfolk will also compete against the major school teams from Friends, Collegiate and Hutchins.Racing starts at 10.30am on Saturday and 8.30am on Sunday.