row very well and are good to each other.
However when we are having problems, we start
to argue. It is easier to get very angry, because
we are so familiar with each other, but that is only
in the boat. Outside we are lovely brothers.
Nikolaos: We try to be.
WR: What is your ultimate goal in rowing?
Apostolos: At the Olympic Games in London, we
really want to give our best. That is our dream.
Nikolaos: We also had another dream: we used
to be a lightweight pair, and we wanted to reach
the same level in the open Olympic event. And
we are very happy to have done just that.
limits. No other sport is like rowing in those last
few metres. It is a true fight between the brain
and the body!
WR: You look very similar, would your coach find
out if you switched position in the boat?
Nikolaos: In our first few years of rowing, our
coach had serious trouble telling us apart. The
difference is clear now, but only in the boat. In the
boat he can recognise us a mile away because he
knows our individual mistakes so well.
WR: Do you have any advice for people who
Nikolaos: It is a very hard sport and it takes time
before you are really good at it. You must take it
one step at a time and enjoy each of them.
WR: Besides rowing what is your ambition
Aspostolos: Besides rowing we are both in physical
education, and our dream is to coach, but currently
we are only rowing. Our only goal is the Games
and we have no time to do anything else. When
we coach we would like to teach rowing to children
in a fun way, and not just focus on performance.
WR: How is the first World Cup going for you, amidst strong competition? Apostolos: We are in the A-final, which is good. We won a bronze in Poznan before and we want o stay in the medals this year.
WR: What sport would do if you were not rowing?
Apostolos: Cycling, because we can do that
together, or mountain-biking, which is a little
bit more extreme. You get less tired and have
WR: How do you relax?
Nikolaos: Be with friends and family, and ride on
our motorbikes, although that is a bit dangerous!
We also read books to recover from hard training
and relax in the camp.
[Note: Following this interview Nikolaos and
Apostolos won bronze at the 2011 Samsung World
Rowing Cup in Munich, GER, behind Italy and Great
Britain, and also came fourth at the 2011 Samsung
World Rowing Cup in Lucerne, SUI]
WR: What is for you the most fascinating thing
Nikolaos: The first and final
metres. Especially those
last metres, when you
push yourself to the
WR: What is a secret people don’t know
Apostolos: I sometimes want to kill my brother
during training. If I just had a weapon… but all I
can use is a bottle of water.
competing in at the
2009 World Rowing
Championships in Poznan,
● Laura Fell
Issue 17 – August 2011
© 2009 John Gichigi/Getty Images