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Thornycroft looks ahead to new season

Zimbabwean female Olympic rower Micheen Thornycroft is looking for a good start to her season when she takes part in the 2013 Samsung World Rowing Cup I which begins on Friday in Sydney, Australia.


The 25-year-old is already in Australia with male compatriots Peter Purcell-Gilpin and brothers Craig and Andrew Peebles.

The Zimbabweans will warm up for the three-day World Cup event with the inaugural Australian Regatta beginning tomorrow at Sydney International Regatta Centre in Penrith.

Thornycroft will compete in her usual single sculls in which she is Africa’s number one, while Purcell-Gilpin takes part in the men’s single sculls with Craig and Andrew partnering for the doubles.

After a hectic 2012 whose biggest highlight was participation at the London Olympics and races in Spain, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Netherlands, Egypt and South Africa, Thornycroft is likely to have another eventful year.

She has a training camp in Italy in April where she will later compete in the Paulo D’alorja, the same event she finished 6th in the A final last year.

The same month of April will also see her competing in the South African Championships followed by the Samsung World Cup III in Lucerne, Switzerland in July.

Her main ambitions are however winning August’s World Rowing Championships that are set for Chungju, South Korea.

“My plans often change but my main goal this year is to win the World Championships in South Korea. Hope all will go well,” said Thornycroft.

The former Peterhouse schoolgirl’s international experience could come handy in Australia.

Her compatriot Craig has international experience acquired from participation in the 2005 Junior World Championships in Brandenburg, Germany as well as the 2009 Under-23 World Championships in Racice, Czech Republic.

Purcell-Gilpin raced at the World Junior Championships in Bulgaria in August last year where he finished 16 out of 33 rowers in the single sculls, while coming 22nd in the doubles sculls with Murray Faber.

Craig and Thornycroft’s participation in highly-competitive international regattas is part of their early preparations for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Thornycroft has engaged fitness expert Grant Mitchell of the Harare’s Innovate High Performance Centre where she is currently training.

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