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Loughborough University

Beijing Olympics 2008

News from Beijing

6 August 2008

Pennie aims for best in Beijing

Fiona Pennie

With one week to go until her Olympic canoe slalom debut Loughborough graduate Fiona Pennie is looking for a best performance in Beijing.

The 25-year-old Sports Technology graduate is in action in the women’s K1 single heatsnext Wednesday (13 August).

After completing her training runs on Sunday, she said: “This course is amongst the biggest in the world. It’s a fight all the way down, if you go even slightly off line at any time then it’s really hard to get back, and you end up using up a lot of energy.

“But as long as I paddle to the best of my ability then I will be happy. If I put two good runs down then that is what’s important – to do the best I can do and not make any mistakes. Even if that means I finish seventh, eighth, whatever, I’ll be happy with that.”

Canoe slalom team leader John Anderson believes his trio of athletes have had the best possible preparation in Beijing.

“We’ve prepared to the gold standard,” he said after the team’s three slalom specialists – Pennie, David Florence and Campbell Walsh – trained in searing temperatures on the white water at Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Canoeing Park on Sunday.

“Every course is unique, but we’ve had four two-week training camps here and I wouldn’t think there are many other sports who have spent as much time in Beijing as we have.

“We use a motto of ‘no stone unturned’ in terms of our philosophy, training and preparation. We feel we’ve done everything possible to maximise the opportunity for our athletes.

“We have good technical paddlers and they are performing extremely well on what is a very challenging course.

“The coaches have done a fantastic job in trying to work out all the possible gate permutations and all the moves and with a week-and-a-half to go it’s a bit of a waiting game now.”

Loughborough University - Beijing 2008

Beijing facts

There are 55 Loughborough athletes in action at the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Did you know?

Former Olympic Champion Sebastian Coe is a Loughborough graduate.

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