Olympics rowers inch nearer knowing their fate
Video: Rower Dan Ritchie
in training for Olympic gold
As we mark 150 days to the Olympics,
Kent rowers Dan Ritchie and Tom Ransley are inching ever nearer to
The duo will come tantalisingly close
to their dreams on March 10-11 when they compete at Eton Dorney –
the venue for the rowing and canoe sprint events during London 2012
– against their Great Britain team-mates.
Their silver medals at the World
Rowing Championships last year make them among the favourites for a
place in the men's eight squad.
But such is the strength of British
rowing at the moment, neither athlete can be certain of a place at
the Olympics - from Friday, July 27.
Dan, 25, who was born in Margate and
grew up in Herne Bay, said: "I don't take anything for granted but
I'm confident in what I've done and my performances in the
"I've done more races than anyone else
in the team this Olympiad and I'm very happy with how I've
approached my training, so I'm confident that I'll be in the boat
"Other people will step their game up
though and everyone wants that seat, so it's a difficult one to
hold on to."
Tom, 26, from Ashford, added: "I'm a
superstitious person and I wouldn't want to jinx myself but the
squad's in a really good position and I'm looking forward to the
next few weeks.
"London has been my goal for the last
few years and it would mean a great deal to get the call up."
Even after the trials at Eton Dorney
next month, chief coach Jürgen Grobler could still make changes to
the squad based on athletes' performances at the World Rowing Cup,
which kicks off in Belgrade, Serbia, in May.
For Dan, 25, the Olympics would be the
culmination of almost a decade of hard work on the international
Dan's own dream was almost shattered
by a hamstring injury last year but intense training – his days
begin at 6.30am and are fuelled by a bowl of up to 10 Weetabix for
breakfast – has made him even hungrier for success.
"To represent the country this summer
would be amazing," he said.
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