Hannah sets sights on rowing at Rio Olympics 

Rowing Australia’s indifference towards Hannah Every-Hall’s plan to row at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics will only serve as motivation for the Bendigo star.

Every-Hall and Bronwen Watson finished fifth in the lightweight double scull final on their Olympic debuts in London, with 35-year-old Every-Hall declaring afterwards she wanted to row at Rio in 2016.

Initially, she wanted to meet with RA to decide the best course to get there.

But after waiting until November for the meeting, three months after the London Games ended, Every-Hall had already made the decision to take this season off rowing.

The reaction of the RA coaches when she told them of her plan has only fuelled Every-Hall’s desire to go out on her terms.

“I don’t think they’re too concerned, there was no trying to persuade (not to take the season off),” Every-Hall said.

“I think they’re looking, at the moment, at developing more athletes rather than keeping on their older ones. 

“Their focus is now Rio also, they think a lot of that’s going to come from younger ones, so I think I’ll have my work cut out for me to make the team again.

“Absolutely (I’m still determined to go to Rio), more so now probably because their focus has gone to younger ones, so I want to make sure I’m there.”

The mum of two young boys, Charlie and Harrison, is looking forward to more time with her family in the next six months before ramping-up training again in June.

“It’s a chance to spend as much time as I can with the kids and then in the next three years knuckle down to it again,” she said.

“I’m probably still doing about 15 hours a week of training at the moment, still rowing and doing ergos, but running and cycling and doing other stuff to make sure I enjoy keeping fit.

“I’ve been named to be ambassador for the Australian Indoor Rowing Championships, which is in September, and not long after the world championships, so I’ll use that as a bit of a goal to work towards to get back into shape.” 

Every-Hall has overcome adversity in the form of polycystic ovary syndrome in 2002 and an anaphylactic reaction at the Athens Olympics trials before winning selection for London.

The dual winner of the bankmecu-sponsored Bendigo Advertiser-WIN Television Sports Star of the Year award views her latest hurdle as a minor hiccup and is confident she can get back to the top after a season off.

“In the past I suppose I would have been a lot more nervous. But because they’ve had their first lot of trials for this year’s team and there’s no new faces really starring at the moment, if I keep my head down and keep working I think I’ll still be there.”

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