Rio 2016 Olympian Pete Lambert announces his retirement

Pete has been an integral part of the men’s quad since his GB debut in 2013

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Pete Lambert (Nick Middleton)

Rio 2016 Olympian Pete Lambert has announced his retirement after seven years representing Great Britain on the world stage.

Reflecting on his decision, Pete says: “I had already been planning to retire in August after Tokyo; when the Games were delayed to next year I decided I still wanted to step away. It feels like the right time for me to start my new chapter and career.

“I would like to thank my coach Paul Stannard, our Chief Coach Jürgen Grobler, all our sport scientists and physios and, of course, my fantastic crewmates.”

Ever since he made his debut for Great Britain in 2013, Pete has been an integral part of the men’s quad. He made history alongside Graeme Thomas, Sam Townsend and Charles Cousins at the 2013 World Rowing Championships, where the crew claimed bronze and became Great Britain’s first ever men’s quad to win an international medal. Throughout the 2014 season the quad upgraded their World bronze medal to a silver, claimed gold at two World Cups and beat the World Best time at the European Championships, finishing 0.08 seconds behind the Ukrainian crew.

Pete’s Olympic experience came in 2016 when he was selected for the men’s quad for the Olympic Games in Rio, an experience he looks back on fondly. Despite a turbulent start to the Games with Graeme Thomas returning to the UK with illness and Jack Beaumont flying out to Rio to replace him, the crew made the A final and finished in fifth.

Pete returned to the GB Rowing Team after Rio and the 2017 season brought more success with the new-look quad of Pete, Jack Beaumont, Jonny Walton and John Collins winning World Cup gold and silver. Disaster struck at the 2017 World Rowing Championships as Pete suffered a back injury just minutes before the final was due to start, with Graeme Thomas stepping in to help the crew win silver. Pete made his return to the team in 2019 and was part of the quad that won a European bronze medal in Lucerne.

Pete leaves the sport on a high with a lasting legacy for the GB Rowing Team; he was part of the crew who secured the men’s quad a spot at the Tokyo Olympics after a fantastic performance in the 2019 World Rowing Championships.

“I’m really happy to have qualified the boat in 2019 even though I’m not going to be in it,” he says. “I wish everyone who is trialling for Tokyo the very best. I am looking forward to supporting everyone from the comfort of my sofa.”

Pete’s GB Rowing Team coach Paul Stannard paid tribute to him: “It has been great working with Pete over the past seven years and he has been the linchpin of the quads project over that time. His determination and strong work ethic, combined with his ability to be an excellent leader and team player will, I am sure, see him make a success in the next stage of his life.”

Pete has been enjoying spending time with his wife and their new puppy during lockdown while he plans for the next stage of his career.

“British Rowing’s Performance Lifestyle Advisors have really helped me make my transition from rowing to my future career. I would like to thank Mel Chowns in particular for all her help.” he says.

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