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In rowing’s case Olympians past and present marked the new men’s pairs World Best time by staging a tongue-in-cheek ‘handover’.
New Zealand’s Eric Murray and Hamish Bond timed 6min 8.50secs in the coxless pairs, almost six seconds inside the 10 year-old record set by Britain’s James Cracknell and Matthew Pinsent in 2002. Cracknell rushed to congratulate the pair.
He embraced Murray in a dramatic comedy chokehold and, thinking ahead to the gold medal race, mused: “Only 1 thing left to get now boys...”
Cracknell’s former partner, four-time Olympic Champion Matthew Pinsent, set a a previous world best time with Steve Redgrave in 1996.
The retired Briton broke the bad news to his six-year-old son, who responded: "Why dont you go out and break it again tomorrow Daddy?" according to a tweet by Pinsent, who himself remarked: “Bless him”.
But there seems to be no stopping the Kiwi duo, who dazzled the competition to finish eight seconds ahead of their closest rivals and continue a four-year winning streak.
Though they may be odds-on for gold, the Kiwi pair are focused on Wednesday’s semifinal, tweeting: “Race 1 good! Shows our prep has been working. NO medals for heats.. Onto next race to MAKE the final! That's all...”
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