Last Wednesday (14th September 2011) saw me travel to Dorney Lake near Windsor – the rowing and canoeing/ kayaking venue for the 2012 Olympics – for my rowing. After a comedy of errors – boat the wrong way round, trainers didn’t fit in the foot straps, oars upside down – managed to get the boat into the water with me in it.
Have to say I found it difficult at first. Despite having a boat with a considerably wider base than a racing boat, it felt like I was going to capsize the whole time. However, with a lot of help from Terry Hunter – GB coach and Britain’s most patient man – I began to get the hang of the basics.
Eventually, Terry decided I was vaguely ready / he’d had enough and he took me, Jon the camera man and the boat to the start of the Olympic course. The challenge was then to row 2km – the Olympic distance – down one of the lanes to the finishing post. 20 painful minutes later, I’d zigzagged my way across every lane to the finish line.
Amazing to have rowed the Olympic course. The even better news is that Dorney Lake is open to the public. So why not take your Olympic Sport Challenge one step further and complete a sport in a genuine London 2012 venue?
Finally, big thanks to Jon for the pics / video and the moral support!
Speaking of video – I’ve uploaded a short clip of me crossing the finishing line at Dorney Lake. Enjoy!