Local rowers selected for World Cup

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Coleraine’s trio of world-class rowers have been selected by Great Britain for the first world cup regatta of the season in Belgrade at the start of next month.

While Alan Campbell and Richard Chambers are mainstays of the squad the news that Peter Chambers will join his brother in the lightweight four is an enormous boost to his Olympics chances.

In fact with only two regattas before the London 2012 squad is named it is now his seat to lose.

“I still can’t believe I’m in it but in a good way because that will push me on,” he said.

“I always like to put pressure on myself because that way I usually get more out of myself each day in every training session.

“It is mine to lose but I’m not thinking of it like that, I just need to focus on making the boat as fast as possible and taking it from there.”

Last year was magical for Peter who claimed world titles at senior and under-23 level in the non-Olympic class lightweight pair and filled in for the injured Chris Bartley when the quartet won impressively in Lucerne.

Along with his two-time world champion older brother Richard, Bartley and Rob Williams they’ll now set about the road to London.

Peter added: “I was really excited to be racing with Richard and also to be rowing with three guys who I 100% trust to row their best and that’s the exciting bit.

“When we go out and race in that first world cup I know every one of us will put in our best effort before we move onto the second world cup and then the third.

“The Olympics is still a long way away but we have to make it right now and build towards that big final race.”

If Richard and Peter are selected eventually for the Olympic Games team they will follow in the footsteps of brothers Pete and Matt Wells and Greg and Jonny Searle, who have raced as siblings on the same Olympic team.

They will be the first to race together in the same Olympic boat since the Searles in 1992.

“I love racing with Peter, I trust him totally and he has the right attitude we need in the four if we want to win this year,” Richard said.

“What he’s doing is incredible, he’s still improving and it’s great to be racing with him.

Campbell has had a tough few weeks. There was enormous pressure on him from Head Coach Jurgen Grobler to move from the single sculls to the double but after blowing away the opposition in the trials the two-time Olympian made his decision to pursue his dream of winning the single sculls gold medal.

“I’ve only had the one conversation since the trials and that came a week after.

“We’d looked at the double but my commitment towards it had begun to wane because the single was going so well.

“When I crossed the line I knew immediately I wanted to do the single.

“Looking at the facts I’d medalled in the last three world championships and I’d had illness and injury going into two of them and for me my devotion had been unwavering.

“If I’d gone in the double I’d have resented the people who forced me to do it. For me it was the only decision to make.”

Now it’s full steam ahead with his mind firmly focused on the racing with London in August the ultimate goal.