Racing because he loves it –
The men’s eight is the fastest boat in rowing. at the olympic Games it tends to go
even faster. seeing rowing’s longest boats powered by eight men speeding down a
regatta course during an olympic final is a performance to behold.
The USA dominated the event for more than
half a century, earning a total of 12 Olympic
gold medals, starting with the 1900 Olympic
Games in Paris. But a gap of 40 years would
separate their win at the 1964 Games in Tokyo,
with their latest gold at the 2004 Games in
Athens. Head coach Mike Teti had found the
magic to form a new winning crew, and a
World Best Time one at that.
wall in my room. It was awesome to row with
those guys in 2004,” says Beery.
Securing a spot in that boat is no painless
achievement. Intense training for months
on end and National Selection Regattas
(NSRs) keep the pressure on. “Talking about
selection is a bit like walking through a
gunpowder factory while carrying a burning
road flare... people get pretty sensitive,” says
Beery. “Selection for us really depends a lot
on the success of the different combinations
Coach Teti tries. We have to trust him that he
is going to make fast boats, we do, and he
does. Winning a National Selection Regatta
or doing well in them does not necessarily
guarantee you anything. ”
are more pure and holistic. In 10 to 15 years
from now I think what I’ll remember are not
the medals but the relationships I’ve forged
through the sport. The people and coaches
I’ve met have enriched my life.”
Daniel Beery (USA)
Daniel Beery was in that boat four years ago.
“There is absolutely nothing in this world like
the start of an A Final in the men’s eight. It is
truly amazing to be in the middle of all that
noise with your friends pounding down the
course feeling like the back of your head is on
fire. It is a great memory for me,” he says.
Most guys want to be in the men’s eight.
“We always look up to the guys in that boat
class. I had a picture of Chris Ahrens on the
With such uncertainty, why does he keep on
rowing? “I’ve reached a point in my career
where I race because I love it. My motivations
Since the 2005 World Champion title, Beery
has not raced internationally in the eight,
rowing in the pair and coxed four instead.
Last year he scored gold in the coxed four at
the World Rowing Championships – he had
done the same one year before the 2004
Olympic Games. Which boat will he end up
in this season? He does not know. At 33, he
simply wishes to “finish out strong – hopefully
at the Olympic Games”. ■ D.F.