Teenage rower from Norwich School brings back trophies from Australia

A teenage rower who was inspired by Team GB's performance at the London Olympics has brought back several race trophies from Australia where he was hailed as one of the best young rowing coxswains on the circuit.

Norwich School pupil Darwin Friend, 14, from Thorpe St Andrew, started rowing a few years ago and trains for about 16 hours a week, which he has to fit in with his normal schoolwork.

The teenager is following in the footsteps of his elder brother, Zachary, 18, who moved from the Norwich School to university in Perth, Australia, where he has already joined a local rowing club. On a recent visit to Australia, Darwin took part in several races, picking up trophies in the eights with girls, eights with boys, and the fours with girls.

He said: 'I think it's fun and everyone involved in it is nice. I hope to carry it on even if it becomes just a hobby. It's one of the best things at school.

'My mum Melyza Friend is very enthusiastic about it and rowing in the eights for the Olympic team would be good.'

Chris Williams, one of the school's rowing coaches, said: 'He's still young and it will depend on how he progresses in the next few years. There's the potential at 17 or 18 to get into the junior Great Britain team. It depends how seriously he takes it. When the exam period starts, some drop out.'

Have you got a story about a successful Norwich schoolboy/girl? Call David Bale on 01603 772427 or email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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