Redgrave: 'Defeat has taken the pressure off'

A defiant Steve Redgrave predicted last night that defeat at last weekend's final international event before Sydney could "spur us on, not drag us down" as he and his crew aim for the victory which would provide his fifth Olympic rowing gold.

A defiant Steve Redgrave predicted last night that defeat at last weekend's final international event before Sydney could "spur us on, not drag us down" as he and his crew aim for the victory which would provide his fifth Olympic rowing gold.

After a week's reflection following the World Cup event at Lucerne, Redgrave said: "You can't say it's not a major problem because obviously it is. Afterwards we were all, naturally, very pissed off. Now we've got to remain positive and use this in a constructive way, rather than being downbeat. It will mean that the crews which beat us will go to Sydney with a slightly different attitude, and that could play into our hands."

An eclipse of a crew with Steve Redgrave in its midst used to be about as rare as the sun by the moon. But after two defeats of the British coxless four last weekend - one in the semi-final, the second in Sunday's final - another Olympic gold for Redgrave is no longer the foregone conclusion it was once considered.

In the Lucerne final, Redgrave's crew (Matthew Pinsent, Tim Foster and James Cracknell) could only manage fourth, behind the winners Italy, who beat them by six seconds. For once, media criticism has been directed at Redgrave himself. He retorted: "That doesn't spur me on, and doesn't hold me back. It doesn't worry me at all. I know what shape I'm in, and what we're capable of doing. It wasn't a one-person disaster. It was a combination of things. I'm just glad it happened then, and not in two months' time."

Last week, the four spent time away from formal training. Redgrave has played golf and taken his children to the seaside. When the crew return tomorrow there will undoubtedly be some serious discussions between the coach Jürgen Gröbler and his crew. "Beforehand at Lucerne, I was thinking that the best result could be us losing," Redgrave said. "That it would really gee us up and ensure there was no complacency. But I didn't anticipate it being like that. By halfway, I was thinking, 'Bloody hell, what's going on here?' We were so far down then that we weren't really competing. There was nothing, no fight."

He added: "Mentally, I don't regard it as a disaster. It's actually taken quite a lot of pressure off us. The crews of the other boats will be thinking, well they are beatable. So, it's up to us when we come out to race next time, at Sydney, to give them a slap and say, 'You're not going to win this'."

Arts and Entertainment
Supporting role: at the Supreme Court, Rhodes was accompanied by a famous friend, the actor Benedict Cumberbatch
booksPianist James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to stop the injunction of his memoirs
Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan
filmDheepan, film review
Sport
Steven Gerrard scores for Liverpool
sport
News
peopleComedian star of Ed Sullivan Show was mother to Ben Stiller
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Richard Blair is concerned the trenches are falling into disrepair
newsGeorge Orwell's son wants to save war site that inspired book
Life and Style
Audrey Hepburn with Hubert De Givenchy, whose well-cut black tuxedo is a 'timeless look'
fashionIt may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
News
George Osborne became Chancellor in 2010
peopleChancellor accused of reneging on pre-election promise
Arts and Entertainment
The pair in their heyday in 1967
music
News
Lena Headey plays Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
people
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern