Start of 2014 Season

Posted by Matthew Tarrant on Monday, June 23, 2014 Under: Rowing


After the World Championships we as a team are given around 3 weeks holiday to do as we please. Late September, early October we start over again! This year I couldn't be happier with the way things turned out, after the horrible period of training in singles is finally over Jurgen selects individuals to compete with one an other in pairs. This is a really good opportunity to mix the older more experienced oarsman with the newer athletes and hopefully rub some of their gold dust onto us newbies to carry through the rest of the year. This year Jurgen chose me to race with Alex Gregory, London 2012 Olympic Gold medalist in the coxless four. I couldn't be happier, as soon as our names were called out I knew this was a real opportunity for myself. We as a combination gelled easily and found good speed early on which was great. Being given the opportunity to train and compete with Alex in a boat like the pair was a real honour, I learnt so much about many aspects of what a it takes to be a truly great rower both on and off the water. I hope as the year has progressed I have managed to hold onto most of what I had learnt! With Alex I won both my first Long distance and short distance trials and I’m sure he had great fun pulling me down the course! 

Moving towards final trials I was paired up with my old partner in crime and long term University crew mate Scott Durant. Scott and I have competed together at many final trials including last year where we finished 5th. This year we were looking to move on from the 5th place finish and break into the top 3. Early on this seemed very achievable, we had good speed, both paddling and racing and on training camps we as a pair showed good speed in the larger boats also. Unfortunately all good things come to an end and in our case Scott suffered an Annular tear to one of the discs in his back which is caused from excessive forces being applied through a range of repetitive movements, which in rowing is inevitable. It was a slow road back from recovery but we started to find our legs as final assessments drew closer, but on the day we just couldn't hold pace with the crews around us and so made our way into the B final. Unfortunately Pete Reed was pulled out due to illness (now know to be caused by his two dogs at the time) which luckily meant that Will Satch was partnerless for the finals and so Jurgen spoke to both Scott and I and said he would like to try Will and I as a combination to keep the A final a 6 boat affair and really to see how a new combination could perform as a scratch crew. Of course that means Scott was also pulled out of racing but Jurgen had assured the two of us that it was no fault of ours and definitely no fault of Scotts. In the final Will and I managed a 5th place finish after being rowed through by two crews in the final stages of the race. Will is a very strong individual with copious amounts of potential and i'm sure that had we had more time together, we could have achieved the top 3 finish I was aiming for. 

In : Rowing