Former Thurston Community College pupil Phil Congdon wants to build on bronze medal success at European Rowing Championships

Bronze medallists Scott Durant, Oliver Cook, Bury St Edmunds-born Phil Congdon, Matthew Gotrel, Pete

Bronze medallists Scott Durant, Oliver Cook, Bury St Edmunds-born Phil Congdon, Matthew Gotrel, Pete Reed, William Satch, Matthew Tarrant, James Foad and cox, Phelan Hill. Photo: Pete Spurrier. - Credit: Peter Spurrier/Intersport-Images

European Championship bronze medallist Phil Congdon aims to go Dutch this summer and build on his rowing heroics in Serbia.

The 24-year-old former Thurston Community College pupil was part of the Great Britain’s Men’s Eights team that won bronze in Belgrade, on Sunday.

The Bury St. Edmunds-born Law graduate hopes to be at the forefront of the GB selectors’ thoughts for August’s World Championships in Amsterdam and knows that impressive performances at World Cup events, in France (next month) and Switzerland (July) will strengthen his case for a place in either the Coxed eights, Coxless Fours or Coxless Pairs.

“We have a meeting to discover the plan is for the summer and to see which are the priority boats (for medal challenges),” said Congdon, who won silver in the men’s eights at the 2012 FISU World University Championships.

“There are two World Cups and then the World Championships which is the crowning part of the season.

“There are more boats and stages in the World Cup, so there is everything to play for, looking ahead to the World Championships.

“The Olympics are the ultimate, but I can’t afford to take my eye off the ball. I want to establish myself in the GB team.”

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Congdon was part of the team that finished behind Russia and winners Germany and revealed the enormity of the achievement.

“Our first aim was to reach the A’ final, we were not sure where we could go from there,” added Congdon, who only began rowing in the first year of university at Durham.

“We made a disappointing start to the regatta but built really well.

“We analysed our performance (in the heats) and decided to be really brave from the start (in the repechage) and get ourselves in the middle of the race.

“We had a great dynamic of older and newer guys – Olympic medallists and people like myself, and a couple of others – who were hungry to prove themselves.”

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