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Grace Cullen 13 December 2012
‘We’re going to be on a stamp’
Just minutes after GB’s men’s coxless four had stormed to victory on Eton Dorney rowing lake, Katherine Copeland and lightweight double sculls partner Sophie Hosking took to the water.
Having only been competing together for a matter of months, 21-year-old Copeland, the youngest member of GB’s rowing squad, and 26-year-old Hosking reached the final in the quickest qualifying time.
With the race underway, the Greek world champions quickly established a lead from the Chinese pair, with Copeland and Hosking in third.
However, by 750m GB had taken China and were gaining on the Greeks with every stroke, and by the halfway stage, GB were in the lead.
Rather than surrender to their more experienced competitors, the Brits powered on, pulling further and further away as the Eton Dorney crowd roared them home.
By the closing stages the result was inevitable; Copeland and Hosking had won the gold medal by an entire boat length, yet they both sat entirely still, eyes wide and seemingly in disbelief of what had just happened.
As the crowd celebrated, the significance of the result started to dawn on the pair. As Hosking turned around to celebrate, Copeland mouthed the now infamous words: “We’ve just won the Olympics! We’re going to be on a stamp!”