By Paul Martin, Sportsbeat
George Bourne’s European Championship near-miss is fuelling his motivation to ensure he leaves his maiden World Championship with a medal.
The Cambridge rower was part of the men’s quad sculls crew who finished fourth in Munich last month, missing out on a podium place by just under three seconds.
A first trip to British Rowing’s notorious Swiss Alps training camp in Silvretta has seen Bourne put in the hard yards as his quartet attempt to bridge the gap and he is confident their efforts will pay off.
“It was my first time on the camp and it was awesome,” he said. “It’s a really cool place and part of the tradition of the men’s team, so it was brilliant to be a part of that.
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“It was hard work, obviously, but good training and it’s great to get that under our belts.
“Munich was really positive for us. We’re obviously all here to make podiums and win gold medals but it was our first regatta together in this unit.
“To come away with fourth gives us plenty to build on and keeps us hungry going into the big one at World Champs.
“We can be confident we can go out there and have a good one. We just have to keep our heads down and try and be as good as we can be every day – then the outcome will take care of itself.”
The men’s quad scullers were among the few British crews to return from the Olympics content last summer following their silver medal and Bourne is one of two new members to have joined the team since.
The 24-year-old is learning plenty from experienced crewmates Harry Leask and Tom Barras and has relished being part of a new-look British men’s squad who are largely not weighed down by any Tokyo demons.
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“It’s my first season with these guys and it’s been great,” he said. “The whole men’s squad have been awesome, I’m making new mates and really enjoying it.
“Our results at the Europeans [Britain topped the rowing medal table] are proof the environment is a good one. We can look at that and see we are in the right place and on the right programme.
“For the sculling squad, it’s about converting that environment into some medals of our own in the coming months and years going into Paris.
“We’re starting to get an idea of where we stand against the other nations but there’s a long way to go, so hopefully we can keep building through the Olympiad.”
British Rowing is the governing body for the sport and is responsible for the development of rowing in England and the training and selection of rowers to represent Great Britain. The GB Rowing Team is supported by the National Lottery Sports Fund. To find out more, and to follow the ongoing World Championships in Racice, head to https://www.britishrowing.org/