Anne Beenken im Interview
Anne Beenken caught World Rowing's eye when she won the junior women's single sculls two years running. This set Beenken's career off to a roaring start. This year Beenken, who recently turned 19, competed in Germany's under-23 team. Racing as part of the women's double sculls, Beenken was fourth. There is little doubt Beenken has a big rowing career ahead of her.
I love to row because… Nothing in the world can be compared with the extraordinary sessions when you're going out for a row early in the morning, the water is flat, the sun is shining and you feel a sort of weightless. Like you are flying over the water and it is as if the boat is moving on its own and you do not need much energy to keep it going. In these moments everything is so calm and peaceful that I forget all my worries. There is only me, the boat and the water. After such sessions I feel relaxed and there is a deep happiness inside of me.
My dream crew would include… Emma Twigg and Kim Crow. They are both amazing scullers and I love watching their races.
If I could have one super power, it would be… Flying. I think it would be so exciting to see the world from above and to travel the world without having to take a plane.
My favourite subjects at school were… Chemistry and biology. I love sciences and I want to learn everything about the small molecules and cells our world is made of. I'm especially fascinated by the human body and that is also one of the reason why I am studying medicine.
First 20 strokes or final 250m? Definitely the final 250m. I've never been a great starter. I always need a couple of meters to get into the race. On top of that, I don't like spending all of my energy in the first 200m of a 2k race. I prefer focusing on every single stroke and trying to win the race inch by inch.
If I was an animal it would be… A dolphin. I admire the way they jump through the waves of the ocean. It must be great fun to do that.
If I could change one thing about the world it would be… Taking away hunger and poverty. It's a shame that there are still such huge differences between developing and industrial countries. That one part of the world's population is starving while the other one is living in luxury and abundance.
A typical day at present involves… I started medical school in Berlin in October, so I am always quite busy trying to find the perfect balance between studying and training. Usually I have lectures at med school from 8am to 3:30pm including a two-hour break around noon, in which I usually have lunch and do some studying. After classes, I ride my bike to Berlin's rowing centre and do my training, which usually involves sessions of two or two and a half hours. However on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I do not have lectures until 10am, allowing me to do an extra session in the early morning.
In ten years time… I want to be a capable doctor on the one hand and I would love to have some more rowing medals on the other hand. My biggest dream is to participate in the Olympic Games of 2016.