It’s been all change for Etienne Stott since his London 2012 heroics but it is consistency which the Bedford canoeist is concentrating on as he bids to repeat the trick in Rio.
Stott won gold in the C2 canoe slalom with Tim Baillie at London 2012, however it has been all change in the two years since.
With Baillie opting for retirement, Stott had to find a new partner and teamed up with Mark Proctor earlier in the year – with the clock well and truly ticking down towards Brazil.
And Stott believes his new partnership has all the raw ability to make real progress in Rio, but only if they can fire on all cylinders on a regular basis.
“We’ve got a raw baseline of good speed and we are looking to build that as well as the consistency,” said Stott, who was speaking at a Get Set to Make a Change event, a programme that looks to keep the spirit of London 2012 alive.
“It’s been really exciting being partnered with Mark and we’ve got this really amazing challenge ahead of us.
“Mark is an extremely good canoeist so sitting in the boat with him I knew it was going well. But the true sign of a world class crew is that consistency and the ability to have control in the situations and that’s what we are practicing.
“The gold medal is always at the forefront of my mind but you have to get on to Team GB first of all before you do that.
“To do that we have to beat an amazing crew so although gold and getting to Rio is what it’s all about, we just need to get as good as we can.”
With less than two years to go until the Rio Olympics, Stott knows that time is of the essence for the duo.
But he believes himself and Proctor are on the same page and are relishing the challenges that lie ahead.
“We’re engaged with that massive task and we’re both really dedicated and excited to be involved with it,” he added.
“I haven’t really thought about the differences between Tim and Mark; it’s just a case of looking at the mission and blasting to the future to try and achieve our dream really.
“There’s no time for thinking about the differences we are just focused on the task.
“There’s a short amount of time left to get as good as we can and that’s really exciting.
“We are just trying to go as far and fast and as hard as we can and I’m trying to relish that.”
Through GSTMC, the British Olympic Foundation, in conjunction with the British Paralympic Association is using the spirit of the London Games to re-inspire young people across the UK.
The project is being supported by a £2.5m grant from the Big Lottery Fund’s Keeping the Spirit of 2012 Alive campaign. Visit www.makeachange.org.uk for more.