“Formidable” was the word Olympic bronze medallist Alan Campbell used to describe the prospect of Coleraine’s most famous brothers rowing together at the World Cup later this month.
Peter and Richard Chambers, silver medallists from London 2012 in the lightweight Mens Four, have been selected together in the lightweight Double Sculls for the second of this year’s three World Cup regattas at Eton Dorney.
Personable off the water but intensely competitive on it, Campbell spoke passionately about their chances of making a mark in a class Zac Purchase and Marc Hunter have dominated in terms of selection since before the Beijing games.
“We’re all from Coleraine and we had the same coach so it’s great to see the town providing two complete boats in the team” Campbell said. “There is no doubting their ability to work together. They are very determined, they work hard and they’re aggressive – they have the odd angry word – but they get a heck of a lot out of each and no-one pushes each other harder than those two. There is a rivalry but that makes them a stronger unit and they’re going to be formidable.”
Both the Chambers boys won medals at the opening World Cup regatta in March. Peter, the younger of the two, now swaps places with Adam Freeman-Pask to join his brother, while Freeman-Pask, with a gold medal to his credit, teams up with Will Fletcher, Jonathan Clegg and Chris Bartley to try and improve on the silver medal position in Sydney.
Campbell didn’t go to Australia but says his fitness graph for the season was always aimed at the World Championships, which are in Korea at the end of August. That’s where he aims to peak as he looks towards a fourth Olympiad.
“My goal is Rio. I’ve done three Olympics and each one has been better than the one before. I want my career to be defined as one of constant improvement.” said Campbell.
“I was given a prototype boat for this year but I didn’t like it so I’ve gone back to the original design from last year. It’s not about the boat though. You can almost buy a World Championship boat off the peg if you want to. It’s about the athlete in it. I feel fit and happy with the way I’m progressing.”
Three of Great Britain’s gold medal winning Mens Four – Alex Gregory, Peter Reed, and Andy Triggs-Hodge – have again been selected in the Mens Eight, which won a gold medal in Sydney. Reed confirmed he’d be quite happy to stay in the bigger boat right through to the World Championships. Performance Director Sir David Tanner made it clear selection was tailored towards a class dominated by Germany in recent years.
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