CANOEING: Sheriff student makes Great Britain debut

Patrick Marriott competing in Austria  (PICTURES BY DEE PATTERSON)
Patrick Marriott competing in Austria (PICTURES BY DEE PATTERSON)

Wildwater world championships in Austria

Patrick Marriott, an 18-year-old student from Lawrence Sheriff School made his international debut at the Wildwater Canoe Sprint World Championships in Vienna, Austria.

Patrick Marriott representing Great Britain

Patrick Marriott representing Great Britain

He finished in 24th place in the Canoe Singles (C1) category.

Wildwater canoeing is a discipline of racing in which the canoeist must negotiate a section of whitewater rapids in the fastest time possible.

This race represents his best achievement so far, having previously never competed at senior level.

Marriott first had an experience of canoeing through Scouts at the age of 11, and still trains at his local club, Break Out Canoe Club in Hinckley. With an initial progression in canoe slalom, Marriott reached the top of the junior ranks in C1 and is also the reserve for the junior European championships this year.

He began racing wildwater in December of last year, after being talent spotted by GB veteran Jamie Christie and under his guidance began training for the world championships.

Marriott was called up to Team GB after this year’s team selection trials, held at Nottingham’s National Water Sports Centre, where he impressed to finish 1st junior and 2nd senior in the C1 category.

He was also selected to compete in doubles with Jack Perchard, 16 from Lutterworth College.

Marriott said: “I was very happy with my result, as it gives me something to build on for next year and is an achievement in it’s own right. Next year I am hoping to decrease the margins between me and the top performers, which means even harder training and even stronger commitment.

“I am most grateful to the Old Laurentians Society, the alumni network at Lawrence Sheriff School, who provided the funding for me to represent GB making this year’s entry possible.

“Although it is an elite sport, canoeing has little funding, which makes it a struggle to maintain participation and high levels of performance.

“If any local business or individal would be willing to sponsor me, please get in touch by initially contacting the Rugby Advertiser sportsdesk.”