Olympics: Wadebridge's Annabel Vernon says she is proud of team in women's eight (From Falmouth Packet)
Olympics: Wadebridge's Annabel Vernon says she is proud of team in women's eight
ANNABEL VERNON admits Great Britain’s women’s eight got found out as they missed the medal podium at London 2012 – but she’s adamant she can leave Dorney Lake with her head held high.
Vernon and the rest of the British octet arrived at London 2012 with genuine hopes of a medal, having won world bronze in 2011 and the same colour medal at the last World Cup of the season in Munich in June.
But all was night right at London 2012 and after finishing third out of four in their heat, they crept into the final by claiming the fourth and last available place in the repechage.
Throughout the women’s competition all eight of the Brits spoke of how it was a matter of time before they clicked and showed their true colours, but after crossing the line in fifth in the final, they are still waiting.
By avoiding sixth and last place the Brits at least mirrored their Beijing 2008 finish but while 26-year-old Vernon, who won Olympic silver four years ago in the quad, conceded Great Britain were not at their best in London, she insists it was not for the want of trying.
“It was a really tough regatta for us and we didn't come here and bring our best but we are really proud of the way we rowed in the final and that's we all we could do,” said the 29-year-old.
“I am really proud of the girls. Of course we wanted to stand on that podium at our home Games but if we didn't start the regatta on the front foot we would have always been on the back foot.
“I think we really put ourselves in that race and that's the most I can ask of myself and the other girls in the crew.
“We had a really, really hard job two days ago entering this final ranked sixth and we worked so hard in trying to turn ourselves around.
“And as much as you want to tell yourself that you're one of the best rowers in the world – it is easier said than done.
“Having eight in the boat makes it one of the best sports when it does go right, when you have got everyone on the same page. But when it is not right it's a very trick beast to row.”
It proved to be a case of after the Lord Mayor’s show for Vernon and co, who took to the water just 24 hours after Heather Stanning and Helen Glover tore up the history books by becoming the first British female rowers to win Olympic gold.
But rather than resentment, Vernon insists she had nothing for admiration for the duo, revealing she just wished she was able to join them on the podium.
We watched what the guys did before us. We said the night before and the morning before the race that we were so proud of Helen and Heather and the other guys,” added Vernon.
“We train alongside them every day and we know how good we are, and we knew that we were in the medal hunt compared to those crews and we gave it everything we could out there.”
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