I don’t know legendary rowing coach Mike Spracklen, but I certainly know of him. I’ve long heard the fabled stories about how tough and demanding he is, that he can be blunt and harsh and unforgiving, that he pushes you to the brink of your own sanity and then pulls you back. I’ve heard all of that, and I’ve also heard about the medals his athletes have won. He coached my childhood idol Silken Laumen and she was pretty damn good too.
Row, row, row your boat
It is rarely disputed that I was rather inept at team sports as a youngster. Whether that was because I simply favoured solo sport over team sport and missed opportunities to develop those skills or because I was naturally well suited for solo sports and thus excelled at them is really a moot point. I don’t like team sports so I’m not good at them and I’m not good at team sports so I don’t like them. Whatever. Give me the choice between going it alone or trying to make it on a team and I will always choose the solo endeavour.