With the sun beating
down on a glorious Thursday morning, what better way to enjoy your breakfast than with a true Olympics hero?
The Deriaz Slater team invited local business professionals to their Breakfast Seminar, ‘The Midas Touch’ hosted at Marlow’s very own Crowne Plaza on Thursday 6th June, with guest presenter, rowing star Dr Katherine Grainger CBE.
Speaking of her journey from a childhood growing up in Glasgow, Katherine explained that she finally found her love of rowing at 18 when joining university. Once she “accidently” fell into rowing, she never looked back. After winning a silver medal at the Athens Olympics in 2000 at 25, Katherine found the thirst for not only representing Great Britain’s Women’s Rowing Team, but also pushing for that all-important Gold medal.
After scooping two further silvers in both the Sydney and Beijing Olympics, the thirst to gain that gold grew; perfect timing for the London 2012 Olympics. Katherine Grainger and team mate Anna Watkins broke the existing Olympic record in the heats for the double sculls event, meaning the stage was well and truly set for the duo to go on and win their first Olympic gold medal in the final, and what better place to do it than in their home country?
Katherine’s journey to sharing the title for the most decorated female Olympian has been full of highs and lows as Katherine described how she felt at winning her third Olympic silver at the 2008 Beijing Olympics “we came second and that meant we were a failure…on that day we got it wrong”.
After picking up her third silver medal, Katherine and her fellow team mate wondered whether they were ever destined to become gold medal winners. Following the Beijing Olympics 2008, Katherine had to decide “I either retire, or I come back and make the decision to go on”.
Speaking of the London Olympics, Katherine reminisced “None of us predicted the success it had…there was this mix between the exciting aspect of watching the games, as well as being a competitor”.
In the lead up to the finals, Grainger always had one thought in the back of her mind, “Could we actually do it?”
As she prepared for the finals on the open waters of Dorney Lake, the eerie silence on the start line gave Grainger the opportunity to compose herself, “this is the one chance, this is your once in a lifetime opportunity.”
“We stripped everything away that we didn’t need, it was just so simple” She thought of nothing but the first stroke of the next 2000 metres.
As the race kicked off, Katherine and Anna’s coach knew it, Anna knew it, but Katherine refused to believe it until they safely crossed the finish line. The gold was theirs, after 12 long years, Katherine finally got what she had been working for: that all-important Olympic gold title.
“However the reality was, that it was far better than I could have ever imagined”
Olympic Gold medallist, three Olympic silvers and six-time World Champion…not bad for the Glasgow girl who found the love of rowing at 18.« Back to News & Blog