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A Winning Combination- Abby and Ursula Team Up

Abby Broughton and Ursula Grobler teamed up after NSR I.  Ursula won the LW1x and Abby finished third (.1 behind second).  Abby approached Ursula's coach, Carlos Dinares, afterward and asked if she could train with him and Ursula.  They decided to give the double a shot.  They proved themselves with a commanding victory at NSR II.  The win qualified them to race at the World Cup in Bled, Slovenia.
    "Abby and I are compatible and have clear what our goals are when we come together in the boat; each bringing in what they do best to make the boat as fast as possible.  There is always difference in style when you have been coached under different systems, so now we are learning one style to achieve maximum acceleration, but as long as the goal is the same, we can make the adjustments to get to the same destination," Ursula said. 
    The win in Bled came despite a few obstacles.  The first challenge was getting Carlos there without financial support from USRowing.  He paid his own way and settled in at a local youth hostile in Bled.  The other challenge was getting their oars there.
    "We got our oars all painted and ready to go in New Jersey, only to find out two days before our flight that they wouldn't fit on the plane.  We raced our heat with blades we were not used to, but thanks to Ursula's persistence, we found the blades we wanted from an Austrian company.  We painted them quickly and had them ready to go by the semi!"  Abby told JL.
   While frustrated by these major setbacks, Abby and Ursula found humor in more minor obstacles.  Abby told us:
    "It was so beautiful in every direction
there, that I just wanted to be constantly looking around and taking in the views... while I was rowing!  The swans are much bigger and much slower and much meaner than Canadian geese!"
    The win in Bled qualified Abby and Ursula to compete at the World Championships this November in New Zealand.  The pair plan to continue training hard and winning again.


Lou Kinder - June 30, 2010