Colne rowing star Gregg Stevenson looking ahead to World Rowing Championships thanks to Paralympic legend Lauren Rowles
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The former Royal Marines commando made his international debut at the European Championships in May alongside the two-time Paralympic gold medallist having returned to the sport after being introduced to it during the 2012 Invictus Games.
Stevenson, who stepped on an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan in 2009, believes patience has been key despite their immediate success since linking up just 12 months ago.
"Learning from Lauren is pretty special, it is awesome," said Stevenson.
"I have really enjoyed training with Lauren, we have tried to be competitive with each other while also respecting each other.
"It is just good fun, getting stuck in and working hard, all the things that I enjoy.
"I maybe don't enjoy them so much at the time, but they are the things that make me want to come in every day.
"I really want to come in in the mornings, I really want to get on with it and I feel like we are improving every session.
"Even when we hit plateaus, it is not through lack of effort or desire.
"It is just a case of being patient with all the skills that we bring to the party that have made this work.
"It has not always been plain sailing, rowing never is though, that is what I have found out.
"But being patient has been a good lesson and a big leap forward for me."
Rowles won her first Paralympic gold in the TA mixed double sculls in Rio before claiming her second in the PR2 mixed double sculls in Tokyo five years later.
With quota spots for next summer’s Paralympic Games at stake in Belgrade, the World Rowing Championships are more important than ever.
"It feels so strange coming here saying I want to win at the World Championships when we only started rowing together literally 12 months ago," he added.
"But why not? We have set some really good times, and we have ambitions to keep pushing that forward.
"I think that is what Belgrade is about for us, we are very honest, and I am really quite sure that whatever happens, we will put 100% effort again and hopefully push it forward again.
"I feel like we are ready to go and that we will make the most of it.
"I knew that if Lauren and I joined up together we would do well, and we have, so it is very exciting."
Earlier this summer, Gregg combined with Lauren Rowles to take gold in the PR2 mixed double sculls at Lake Bled, Slovenia, and helped Paralympic champion Rowles regain the title she last won in 2021.
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 team, head to https://www.britishrowing.org/