3 June 2016
Göran R Buckhorn writes:
Great Britain has a fine tradition rowing in fours, a custom that started long before Sir Steve Redgrave took an Olympic gold medal in the coxed four in 1984. Sir Steve crowned his career with an Olympic gold in the coxless four in 2000, together with James Cracknell, Tim Foster and Matthew Pinsent. At the following Games in London in 2012, it was Alex Gregory, Tom James, Pete Reed and Andrew Triggs-Hodge who took the gold in the same boat class.
Continuing the country’s success in the men’s coxless four, training hard for the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio, are Moe Sbihi, George Nash, Alex Gregory and Constantine Louloudis. However for the World Cup in Lucerne last week, Louloudis went down with a virus, so a sub had to step in, Callum McBrierty. He made his debut at the 2010 World Junior Championships, taking a silver medal in the coxless fours and winning a gold in the (senior) coxed pairs at the World Cup in Varese last year.
In the Lucerne World Cup finale race in the coxless fours last Sunday, it was a nail-biting finish between Great Britain and Australia. Two metres from the finish line, Australia’s two-seat Joshua Dunkley-Smith caught a bad crab, which made the Aussie boat come to a complete stop – while the British boat slipped first over the finish line, taking the gold, leaving the second place to the poor Australians.
‘That wasn’t exactly a text book way to win”, Alex Gregory said afterwards, according to an article on British Rowing’s website. Gregory continued: ‘But it shows how strong our squad is that we can swap in someone like Callum and still pull out the win’.
Crew member Mohamed Sbihi added: ‘We could have stayed away and trained at home but we didn’t want to shy away from it. This has been invaluable experience’.
Just the other day, Gillette World Sport on YouTube put up a video about how Alex Gregory, Moe Sbihi, George Nash and Constantine Louloudis are preparing in the four for Rio – all under the watchful eyes of Coach Jürgen Gröbler.
Here is the video for you HTBS readers to enjoy: