ROWING: Poppy powers to two more major medals

Poppy Shipley shows off her gold medals at the British Indoor Rowing Championships.

Poppy Shipley shows off her gold medals at the British Indoor Rowing Championships. - Credit: Archant

Golden girl Poppy Shipley continued her meteoric rise with two more major titles last weekend.

The Brampton talent bagged a pair of gold medals at the British Indoor Rowing Championships in London to complete a stunning year.

Shipley triumphed in the Year 11 Girls event by completing 1,642m in six minutes and was also part of the successful Under 18 Women’s relay side who managed to cover 4,999m in eight minutes.

The Hinchingbrooke School pupil only took up rowing in 2016 after going along to Huntingdon Boat Club with friends and her progress since then has been nothing short of astonishing.

“I never dreamed of being able to win medals in national competitions,” said Shipley, who celebrated her 16th birthday last week. “I am very grateful to everyone who has helped me to succeed.

“I am training every day and working hard towards trialing for the Team GB junior team in February.

“I really hope next year will be as good as 2018 has been and that I have more opportunities to compete at national level.”

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Since winning silver and bronze at the corresponding indoor event in late 2017, Shipley has struck gold at the National Junior Championships and the British Rowing Sculling Festival.

She also picked up a bronze medal at the Junior British Championships and has collected a host of victories at regattas.

Shipley is a member of the GB World Class Start programme which aims to identify and nurture future Olympians. The 2024 Games in Paris are the long-term goal.

“We’re all immensely proud of Poppy’s achievements and her extraordinary dedication to rowing,” said mum Nicola.

“If I am unable to take her to morning training in Ely, she thinks nothing of getting up at 4.45am, cycling into Huntingdon to the station, getting three trains and cycling again at the other end to be on the water for 7.30am.

“She also insists on continuing to do her paper round Monday to Friday as she wants the money to pay for the extra food she needs in between training and cross-fit sessions.”