Back to day job for GB Rowing Team as Munich crews named
After the glamour of yesterday’s Olympic announcement at Windsor Castle, the Siemens-sponsored GB Rowing Team had its feet back on the ground in training today with the focus firmly on the season’s final world cup in Munich in a week’s time (15-17 June).
Heather Stanning, named today for the Munich Regatta in the women’s pair, summed up the mood when she said: “I’m looking forward to another opportunity to race against the rest of the world and it is a last chance to test ourselves prior to the hard training camps before the Olympics”.
Stanning is part of a now well-established pairing with Helen Glover. For other more recently-formed crews, Munich represents a valuable arena in which to hone their racing skills.
Charles Cousins who races in Munich with Tom Solesbury, Stephen Rowbotham and Matt Wells in the men’s quadruple scull said: “The last few weeks have been pretty tough as we were one of the last boats to be decided. But now the ball is starting to roll and hopefully we’re going to go into Munich improving and can peak just in time for the Olympics”.
Houghton said: “I think Munich is going to be really tough. In Lucerne, at the last world cup, the world record went, and not even by the fastest crew in the event. The competition is very strong, but we really believe in each other and we will tackle that challenge each and every day to do the best we can”.
Britain’s more established and regular medal-winning crews, like the men’s eight, are also aware that Munich is important. Mohamed Sbihi, from the 2011 World Silver medal crew, said: “There’s still work to do, the Games are still a long way out. We still need to make sure Munich, our last chance for race practice before the Olympics, is tip top”.
His cox, Phelan Hill, added: “It is really significant to be named as part of Team GB. But at the same time we haven’t achieved anything yet and we’re back in training, almost working harder.
“It’s been frustrating not to have a settled line up but we’ve got another dry run in Munich which gives us two opportunities to race Germany again”. The British eight will compete in Munich with Marcus Bateman in the crew. Bateman, a World sculling medallist in 2010, has transferred in recent weeks to the eights group and is one of four rowers vying for the final place in the eight for London.
Cameron Nichol and Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell, also in contention for that place with Constantine Louloudis, will race as Britain’s entry in the men’s pair in Munich. The GB Rowing Team’s already Games-selected pair of George Nash and Will Satch are rested for Munich.
All other GB crews in the men’s squad, under the guidance of Chief Coach for Men, Jurgen Grobler, are unchanged. Alan Campbell will race the single and will be joined in the event by up-and-coming Start rower Graeme Thomas from Agecroft – his second international event since his A final finish in the double scull at the 2011 European Championships.
Britain’s lightweight squad line-up has one change for Munich from Lucerne. Peter Chambers is back from injury in time to join his older brother Richard, Rob Williams in the Chris Bartley in the four. Lucerne substitute Paul Mattick moves across to the men’s pair with Adam Freeman-Pask and Mike Mottram, who has his sights set on the World U23s this year, has his second world cup start this season in the single.
Mark Hunter and Zac Purchase will race in the lightweight men’s double and Kat Copeland and Sophie Hosking contest the equivalent women’s boat. Britain also fields a second women’s double of Imogen Walsh and Andrea Dennis and a lightweight women’s single sculler, Kathryn Twyman.
Paul Thompson is the Chief Coach for Women and Lightweights. He still has some Games selection decisions to take. His women’s eight group of 10 plus a cox has been distributed across an eight and pair for Munich. Jo Cook and Emily Taylor race in the pair. The eight features Olivia Whitlam, Louisa Reeve, Jess Eddie, Lindsey Maguire – who is back from injury – Natasha Page, Annabel Vernon, Katie Greves and Vicky Thornley – who has transferred into the group from the women’s quad – and will be coxed by Caroline O’Connor.
There are no selection issues with the women’s double scull, though. Anna Watkins, a Beijing bronze medallist in this boat, and Katherine Grainger, three times an Olympic silver medallist, will race in Munich as a final tune-up for the Games into which they will go as firm favourites having been unbeaten since they teamed up in early 2010.
GB Rowing Team Performance Director David Tanner spoke at Windsor yesterday of Britain’s Games’ ambitions to equal the tally of six medals won in Beijing. He will be eyeing Munich as a final staging post for a team which he has described as “certainly the strongest team the GB Rowing Team has ever put on the water thanks to unparalleled investment from the National Lottery over the past four years”.
Munich will also be a final racing opportunity for the GB Rowing Team’s adaptive crews who are in training for the Paralympic Games for which the crews will be announced on June 27th.
The Siemens-sponsored and lottery-funded squad will have two crews in Munich. Britain’s mixed coxed four which won World gold in Bled last summer remains unchanged for the Munich regatta with cox Lily van den Broecke from Oxford, Beijing bronze medallist Naomi Riches from Marlow, Pamela Relph from Aylesbury, Aviemore’s ex GB bobsleigher David Smith and James Roe from Stratford-upon-Avon.
Andy Houghton from Newbury, who won silver in Munich in 2009, will represent Britain in the adaptive men’s single scull.
World and Paralympic single scull Champion Tom Aggar and the GB mixed double of Samantha Scowen and Nick Beighton will remain at the team’s training base just outside Reading to concentrate on training.
“Munich is a brilliant opportunity for the four to get some further racing experience and build on the excellent performances they have already put together to win in Bled last year and Varese just recently,” said GB’s lead adaptive coach Tom Dyson.
Van den Broecke, a Durham University student, said: “We want to make our mark in Munich, I’m really excited to see what we can do.”
Her crewmate Relph, who started rowing after having to give up a future career with the Royal Engineers, added: “The atmosphere when we get to training is a lot more exciting now with less than three months to go.
“There’s a lot more purpose to it. We’re getting close to the edge now and we’re all looking forward to racing in Munich.”
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GB Rowing Team: CREW LISTS
Pair – two boats
Jo Cook/Emily Taylor
Single scull – two boats
Bill Lucas/Sam Townsend
Stephen Rowbotham /Tom Solesbury/Charles Cousins/Matt Wells
Double scull – two boats
Imogen Walsh/Andrea Dennis
Paul Mattick/Adam Freeman-Pask
(Rob Morgan/Darren Whiter)
Zac Purchase/Mark Hunter
Pamela Relph/Naomi Riches/David Smith/James Roe/Lily van den Broecke (cox)
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HOME TOWN LISTS
PAIR (Boat 2)
Jo Cook Leander Club Sunbury-on-Thames 22/03/84
Emily Taylor Leander Club Lincoln 28/06/87
Coach: Nick Strange
Olivia Whitlam Agecroft RC Warrington 16/09/85
Louisa Reeve Leander Club London 16/05/84
Jessica Eddie Univ of London BC Durham 07/10/84
Lindsey Maguire Wallingford RC Edinburgh 15/01/1982
Natasha Page Gloucester RC Hartpury 30/04/85
Annabel Vernon Leander Club Wadebridge 01/09/82
Katie Greves Leander Club Oxford 02/09/82
Victoria Thornley Leander Club Wrexham 30/11/87
Caroline O’Connor (cox) Oxford Brookes Univ BC Ealing, London 25/04/83
Coach: Nick Strange
Anna Watkins Leander Club Leek, Staffs. 13/02/83
Katherine Grainger St Andrew BC Aberdeen 12/11/75
Coach: Paul Thompson
Melanie Wilson Imperial College BC London 25/06/84
Beth Rodford Gloucester RC Gloucester 28/12/82
Frances Houghton Leander Club Oxford 19/09/80
Debbie Flood Leander Club Guiseley, W Yorks 27/02/1980
Coach: Ade Roberts
Nathaniel Reilly O’Donnell Uni of London BC Durham 13/04/88
Cameron Nichol Molesey BC Glastonbury 26/06/87
Coach: Paul Stannard
Alex Gregory Leander Club Wormington 11/03/84
Pete Reed Leander Club Nailsworth, Glos 27/07/81
Tom James Molesey BC Wrexham 11/03/84
Andrew Triggs Hodge Molesey BC Hebden, N. Yorks 03/03/79
Coach: Jürgen Grobler
Greg Searle Molesey BC Marlow 20/03/72
Alex Partridge Leander Club Alton, Hants 25/01/81
Marcus Bateman Leander Club Torquay 16/09/1982
Mohamed Sbihi Molesey BC Surbiton 27/03/88
Tom Ransley York City RC Cambridge 06/09/85
Richard Egington Leander Club Knutsford 26/02/79
Matthew Langridge Leander Club Northwich 20/05/83
James Foad Molesey BC Southampton 20/03/87
Cox – Phelan Hill Leander Bedford 21/07/79
Coaches: John West & Christian Felkel
Single Scull (Boat 1)
Alan Campbell Tideway Scullers School Coleraine 09/05/83
Coach: Bill Barry
Single Scull (Boat 2)
Graeme Thomas Agecroft RC Preston 08/11/1988
Coach: Hamish Burrell
Bill Lucas London RC Kingswear 13/09/87
Sam Townsend Reading Univ BC Reading 26/11/85
Coach: Mark Earnshaw
Stephen Rowbotham Leander Club Winscombe, Somerset 11/11/81
Tom Solesbury Leander Club Petts Wood, Kent 23/09/80
Charles Cousins Reading Univ BC Willingham, Cambs 13/12/88
Matthew Wells Leander Club Hexham, Northumberland 19/04/79
Coach: Mark Banks
Kathryn Twyman Wallingford RC Oxford 29/03/87
Coach: Ben Reed
Double Scull (Boat 1)
Sophie Hosking London RC Wimbledon 25/01/86
Katherine Copeland Tees RC Ingleby Barwick, Stockton-on-Tees 01/12/90
Coach: Paul Reedy
Double Scull (Boat 2)
Imogen Walsh London RC Inverness 17/01/1984
Andrea Dennis Imperial College BC Oxford 03/01/1982
Coach: Ben Reed
Paul Mattick Leander Club Frome 25/04/1978
Adam Freeman-Pask Imperial College BC Windsor 19/06/1985
Coach: Rob Morgan/Darren Whiter
Pete Chambers Oxford Brookes University BC Oxford 14/03/1990
Rob Williams London RC Maidenhead 21/01/85
Richard Chambers Leander Club Coleraine 10/06/85
Chris Bartley Leander Club Chester 02/02/84
Coach: Rob Morgan
Zac Purchase Marlow RC Tewkesbury 02/05/86
Mark Hunter Leander Club Romford, Essex 01/07/78
Coach: Darren Whiter
Mike Mottram Leander Club Stoke Mandeville 08/06/1990
Coaches: Rob Dauncey
Pamela Relph Leander Club Aylesbury 14/11/1989
Naomi Riches Marlow RC Harrow 15/06/1983
David Smith Molesey BC Ascot 21/04/1978
James Roe Stratford-upon-Avon BC Stratford-upon-Avon 28/03/1988
Lily van den Broecke Headington School BC Oxford 08/01/1992
Coach: Mary McLachlan
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RACING SCHEDULE – all local German times
Thursday 14 June
18.30 – 19.30 Adaptive heats
Friday 15 June
08.30- 17.20 Heats and repechages
18.00 – 18.56 – Adaptive repechages
Saturday 16 June
09.00 – 16.04 – Reps, quarters & semi-finals
16.30 – 18.10 – Finals of the international classes
18.40 – 19.48 – adaptive Finals
Sunday 17 June
09.20 – 13.55 A and B Finals
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For media enquiries about this event please contact:
Caroline Searle on (01225) 443998 o 07831 755351 or e-mail us on [email protected]
GB Rowing Team website, including full rower biogs: www.gbrowingteam.org.uk
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