The world’s best rowers return to Eton Dorney this weekend almost 11 months after the London 2012 Olympics for the second world cup regatta of the season.
It’s now the first step on the road to Rio 2016 but for Coleraine’s trio of Olympic medallists it’s about seeing how they match-up ahead of this year’s world championships that will be held in Korea at the end of August.
Brothers Richard and Peter Chambers will scull together in the lightweight double, a fresh challenge and one they’re looking forward to.
“At the end of the day we’re just two guys in a boat, the fact that we’re brothers doesn’t make that much difference,” Richard said.
“We row quite similarly and so as soon as we jumped in the boat we were able to make that gel quite quickly and then we were able to move on to the more technical aspects of making the boat go fast so we were able to set a very high standard which was good.”
He’s a double world champion in the lightweight four while Peter won a world title in the non-Olympic class lightweight pair two years ago and off course they were half of the Great Britain quartet that took silver behind South Africa in that thrilling finish last summer.
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After a winter of trials and intense training and the first world cup event in Sydney in March where Richard won the lightweight double with Adam Freeman-Pask while Peter was a member of the four that took silver, more testing saw Peter come out on top with Richard second and so this new partnership was formed.
Richard added: “Peter is sculling very well and I’m sitting behind him in the bow seat and he’s making it really easy for me. We’ve had a solid block of training and been pushing things on and the aim now is to carry that into Eton and then onwards for the rest of the summer.
“We want to win at Eton and we’re doing everything we can to make that happen.”
After a long post-Olympics sabbatical Alan Campbell is back in the single sculls having committed to the next four-year cycle.
He’ll come up against London silver medallist Ondrej Synek and Germany’s Marcel Hacker who beat Campbell at a recent regatta in Germany.
Despite winning an Olympic bronze, as he starts his Rio campaign, Campbell knows that is pressure to perform.
“I’d sacrifice the next three world championships to get the result I want in Rio but I obviously have to, at some point, perform along that road but I feel like I’m on a better trajectory heading into this years world championships having taken some time off and gradually getting back into it. Now I base everything on long term objectives and long term plans,” said Campbell.
“I need to use the racing to help me move forward and to make sure I’m doing the right stuff and address any issues that may occur or any weaknesses I might have or alternatively establish what my strengths are.
“I’m ranked third in the world from the Olympics and I want to continue on at that level and looking forward to getting back into it.”