London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallist to focus on career
Olympic rower Will Lockwood has today formally announced his retirement from rowing. Lockwood represented Australia at the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games, as well as at multiple World Rowing Championships and World Rowing Cups.
The 29-year-old Lockwood, with Joshua Dunkley-Smith, James Chapman and Drew Ginn won silver at the London 2012 Olympic Games in the Men’s Coxless Four. He competed most recently in Australia’s Men’s Four, with Dunkley-Smith, Joshua Booth and Alexander Hill, at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, winning a second Olympic silver medal, but has made the decision to retire from the sport.
“I have been part of the senior Australian Rowing Team for over eight years. After some deliberation post-Rio, I have come to the decision that it is time to retire from the sport and focus on my other interests, including coaching St Joseph’s College Gregory Terrace in Brisbane, and working in the construction industry. Rowing, and its whole community, has played a huge part in my life from school through to now and has certainly contributed to making me the man I am today.
“The decision was not an easy one for me to make, but I now want to focus on working and also coaching here in Brisbane,” said Lockwood.
Lockwood represented Australia at 14 World Rowing Cups and seven World Rowing Championships (including two U23 World Championships) and of course two Olympic Games. Born in Victoria, he rowed out of Melbourne University Boat Club with the support of the Victorian Institute of Sport and the Australian Institute of Sport. He continues to be involved with the sport, coaching and mentoring younger athletes in Brisbane where he is now based.
“I have to thank everyone who has been so supportive of my rowing career, my club and team mates who have encouraged and supported me throughout my rowing career, as well as the VIS and AIS for their support. I am also extremely grateful to Chris O’Brien, without his support and his amazing ability to get the best out of me I certainly would not have been able to achieve what I did in rowing, I will be forever thankful to him.
“I would also like to thank Rowing Australia and all those involved in the Australian Rowing Team over the last eight years for their support.
“It would be remiss of me to not thank my incredibly supportive and understanding family. My Mum and Dad for letting me follow my Olympic dreams and supporting me to do so even through the hardest and darkest times, their incredible and unwavering support over the years has been second to none and I will be forever in their debt for what they have done for me. My sister and brother, for always being there to make me laugh and support me, even though I missed a lot of their lives over the past nine years, they always made me feel like I never left.
“Last but not least, my partner Jess [Hall], she is without a doubt the best thing rowing gave me. I will always look back and remember the times we got to spend together chasing our dreams and without you there with me over the past five years I probably wouldn’t have made it.”
Rowing Australia President, Rob Scott, said: “Will was an integral member of Australia’s men’s sweep group for eight years, whilst also being a fantastic role model within the Australian Rowing Team. His performances on the world stage speak for themselves, but I am certain his proudest moments in the green and gold are when he won silver medals at the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
“Will continues to coach and be involved in our sport and we are eager for him to still be involved with rowing and hope he can contribute to our current and future athletes in our Pathways Program.”