Bond to return to rowing

Hamish Bond will switch back to rowing from cycling. Photo: Getty Images
Hamish Bond will switch back to rowing from cycling. Photo: Getty Images
Two-time Olympic gold medalist and world rowing champion Hamish Bond, who moved to cycling in 2017 and competed in the Commonwealth Games, is returning to the water.

The 33-year-old has decided to return to rowing after a short stint in cycling to focus on preparing for next year's Tokyo Olympics.

"It came about with sitting back after the national track championships and looking at really what I think I'll enjoy or get the most satisfaction of in terms of project over the next 15 months looking to the Tokyo Olympics.

"[I] came to the conclusion that rowing, and in particular the eight, was something that really motivated and excited me," he told Radio Sport.

Bond said he will be gunning for a spot in the men's rowing eight.

"I always wanted to have a crack at it but given our own individual goals it was never a realistic opportunity. It's never a perfect time but it was going to be now or never."

"It's going to be a tall task. There's a lot of talent around at Rowing New Zealand. Hopefully I'll bring 15-odd years of experience and all the things I've learned and picked up along the way. And hopefully can make something happen."

Last month, Bond admitted he wasn't happy about missing out on selection for the track cycling world championships in Poland.

He had shown record-breaking potential as a track cyclist after setting a national record in the individual pursuit at the recent national championships in Cambridge, where he eventually beat 2017 world champion Jordan Kerby in the final.

However, Bond's record time of 4 minutes and 12.436 seconds fell out of Cycling NZ's selection window of January 29, which meant it wasn't able to be considered for the world champs.

Cycling NZ decided against selecting anyone for the individual pursuit as it gives a priority to Olympic Games events.

Bond and Murray won gold in the pair at the London and Rio Olympics and were unbeaten in 69 elite events.

Bond admitted the Tokyo Olympics was a big factor in his decision.

"I guess I've been full gas going one thing to another, I hadn't really taken a chance to think this could be my last shot at the big dance. I'll be 34 year next and life gets busier and busier every year. Basically come down to what I'd want to have a go at."

Rowing New Zealand is currently holding its trials for the World Cup and world championships on Lake Karapiro.

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