Shrewsbury School

Two former GB athletes and World Championship medallists join RSSBC coaching team

Friday 4 October 2019

There’s an extra buzz of excitement in the Boat Club this term, with the arrival of Olympic Gold Medallist and Double World Champion Rebecca Romero and World Silver Medallist Becca Chin.

Rebecca Romero won Olympic Silver in 2004 in the quadruple sculls and the following year won World Championship Gold. She had previously won the U23 World Championship coxless pairs in 2000. When a persistent back injury forced her to retire from rowing in 2006, she took up track cycling. She won her first World Championship Cycling medal just a year later in 2007, with silver in the 3km pursuit. In 2008 she became Double World Champion, winning the individual and team pursuit events at the UCI Track Cycling World Championships.

In the same year she became the first British woman ever to compete in two different sports at the Olympic Games when she rode in the individual pursuit. She won gold, becoming only the second woman in the world to win a medal in two different sports at the Summer Games.

Becca Chin represented Great Britain in athletics at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing at the age of 16. She took up rowing in the Sixth Form and was quickly recruited for the GB Start Programme. She represented Great Britain at two World Rowing U23 Championships before winning silver at her first senior World Championships in 2015, racing in the women’s four. In 2017, she won World Cup silver and bronze in the GB women’s eight.

Director of Rowing Athol Hundermark is thrilled to welcome Rebecca and Becca to the coaching team at Shrewsbury School. “When we advertised for a new rowing coach last term, I was doubtful about how many experienced candidates we would have applying for the job. So to get not just one but two applications with such a high level of experience was fantastic.”

“As former Team GB athletes, they bring with them a wealth of knowledge and experience that will be greatly beneficial to the Senior Boys’ and Seniors Girls’ Squads. Rebecca Romero’s cross-over experience into the cycling team will also bring some unique insights on performance in an arena unfamiliar to the team.”

Rebecca and Becca are delighted to be joining the Shrewsbury School Boat Club at an exciting point in its illustrious 153-year history. Last season’s highlights included the boys’ 1st VIII retaining the North of England Headship with a new course record and an outstanding silver medal for the senior girls’ quad at the National Schools’ Regatta. Their achievement represented a major milestone for girls’ rowing at Shrewsbury, with the girls joining the boys in reaching the podium at the highest national level.

For the first time ever, three RSSBC crews qualified for the Henley Royal Regatta. With the alumni crew (Sabrina) also qualifying, this represented a feat unmatched by any other school in the country. The boys’ 1st VIII’s run of victories was halted in the quarter-finals by eventual finalists Scotch College from Australia, whilst the girls’ crew made history again by progressing to the semi-finals, the furthest a Shrewsbury School female crew has progressed in the prestigious international event.

“The Boat Club had some amazing results last year,” says Becca Chin. “There’s a fantastic ethos in the squad – everybody wants to train hard, enjoy themselves and encourage each other.”

“I came to coach at Shrewsbury because I love how there’s a strong depth in the girls’ squad and in the boys’ squad,” says Rebecca Romero. “It’s fantastic to be here passing on the knowledge that I have and hopefully inspiring and motivating others to go on and achieve great things in the sport.”

 

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