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Rio 2016 Olympics - Olympians for Life






Today at Lagoa Stadium, the tension went up another level as some crews got to the semi-final stage of their event. Our two heavyweight doubles and our men's pair booked their places in an Olympic final in fine style. Then there was the agony of watching the lightweight men's four just miss out on making the final and the lightweight women's double also missing out on a top 12 spot. Both these crews contain Olympic medalists and it just shows how brutal sport can be. These six athletes will be devastated and it marks the end of the Rio dream of a medal that will have been their raison d'être for four long years.


Peter and I had nothing planned for the afternoon, and we were offered the last minute opportunity to visit British House, Rio.


This is where athletes can meet with their nearest and dearest and have a drink or some food. Jack would be busy preparing for his final, but we thought we would go and check it out without him.


We were not disappointed. The venue was unbelievable, a former art college, built in the 19th century it featured a fabulous building, with a large courtyard with Christ the Redeemer looking down, all surrounded by lush gardens.


We registered and received a nearest and dearest accreditation. The reception staff then radioed through to the main house to say that the supporters of Jack Beaumont were arriving. We were met by former GB rower and Olympic medalist Sarah Winckless who showed us round. We were given food and drink and generally treated like royalty. The photos don't really do it justice, the attention to detail was mind boggling and it was an amazing opportunity to soak up some of the Rio 2016 and Team GB vibe. There were huge plush sofas and endless screens showing all the day's action from the field of play. As day turned into evening, there was more of a party feel, the courtyard was floodlit and a DJ kicked in. Bronze medalist, Ed Ling was the guest of honour and was interviewed in the courtyard.


I feel very privileged to have experienced this for a day. The level of respect, the feeling of being part of a very select group, the sense that people are in awe of you and grateful for your commitment is something that is there for all Olympians, whether you come first or last. For those crews that feel like they failed today, it may not feel like a consolation right now, but they will be Olympians for life, and that is an unbelievably special thing.


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