Although Great Britain had a Junior Men’s team at the WRC in Costa Rica in 2011 it is a completely new team that will be competing at the WRC in New Zealand in 2013.
No member of the team has ever been to New Zealand before and for many of them this will be the longest distance traveled away from home. Besides rafting most of the team share the hobbies of kayaking and other outdoor sports including climbing and camping. Four members of the team (Luke, Kim, Liam and Chris) are part of the Welsh Scout Council Water Activities Team and regularly coach scouts to kayak and canoe. Some of the team are in full time education at university and the others all have jobs. A very active young team.
In this interview Captain Luke Dorbin introduces us to the team and starts with a brief history:
How does your team prepare for the competition, how do you structure your training and on which rivers are you preparing?
“We are working hard to squeeze in as much personal fitness training as possible and at least once a month meet up as a team (when work and university commitments allow) to train our rafting skills and progress as a team. With the lack of water here at the moment we have just completed a flat water weekend on the River Dee in Chester but have used the Lee Valley Olympic white water course for some white water training and are hoping to progress somewhere else at the next training weekend”.
Yeah, I have seen that you are using an artificial track, but they certainly do not adapt that to your age, how do you navigate the artificial course?
“The course we used at Lee Valley wasn’t adapted in any way before we had our runs. This gave us an exciting opportunity to experience bigger water and push our skills to help us improve.”- Certainly a fantastic opportunity to improve skills and experience!
Which discipline is your team’s favourite?
“The team’s favorite discipline is the Slalom.”
Do you have any expectations related to the result….? And what are your expectations generally?
“With us being a new team we are trying to keep expectations realistic but are trying to be positive at the same time. Generally our main aim is to show that with hard work and plenty of effort we can show we have potential for future events!”
Certainly these are the generations that have the advantage of starting so early with competitive rafting. There is no doubt that this team will be giving good results in the future and we will follow their progress.
Will you be able to stay and support your senior’s team?
“Unfortunately due to the limited time we can take off work most of team will be travelling back the weekend of the seniors competition, however the few days we are in New Zealand whilst the early part of the competition goes ahead will be spent supporting our friends!”
Is there are a sponsor who helps you in all WRC 13 things that you want to thank?
“We would like to thank Ainsworth Paddles for their support and supplying us with a full set of paddles to use for the championships and to YAK for their support and kit which we hope to be wearing soon!
There are also companies local to various team members who have made donations to help us reach our funding goal to get to New Zealand. Thanks go to them and our local communities for helping us on our path to New Zealand. Gap Personnel. WGP Exploration Limited”
It’s always nice to write about these young teams, because their optimism is contagious. The opportunity to travel far for such a big event is something that launches them additionally. I’m sure this is the generation that we will see plenty of in future at the big competitions. All the best GBR Juniors.
Where to find and follow them:
- Twitter @GBR_U23Rafting
- Facebook page:
- Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3vUBTFAiao&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DD3vUBTFAiao&nomobile=1
- And can be seen on www.britishraftteam.co.uk