Joe Gellett


Height: 176cm

School: Hampton School

International rowing record: n/a

Year you first started rowing: 2013

How have you coped this year?

Talking to friends, as I’ve found it really helps to put stuff into perspective when the pressure gets a bit too much.

Could you build a strong team culture while training virtually?

Yes definitely, especially as the rowers would often do training sessions together over Zoom, so it was still possible for everyone to feel like a part of the squad.

Were the isolated ergs better or worse than expected?

Although I didn’t have to do the training, I definitely found it worse than expected as a lot of the time there wasn’t much I could do as a cox, other than listen to lots of previous recordings of races. So, there were points when it felt like I was almost letting the squad down, as the rowers were doing all this training and improving, and I just wasn’t doing much.

What was your lockdown training set up?

Luckily, I didn’t have to worry about trying to adapt a space for training, as I don’t think I would’ve had much space to put anything.

How do you cope with race day nerves?

I just try to keep my focus on the task at hand and block out everything else because that stops me from being overwhelmed by all the things going on, which helps me to stay calm and relaxed. I also like to go over the race plans in my head, as this helps remind me that this is what we’ve been preparing for.

The biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge has probably been the lack of water time, as for a cox most of the improvement comes from trying stuff on the water and seeing how it goes. So, without a lot of water time, I’ve been having to find ways to continue improving whilst on the land.

The best day, so far?

I really enjoyed Trial VIIIs and found it to be such a fun day, even though my crew lost. It was my first time experiencing all of it, as this is my first year trialing, so it was just a completely new thing to me.

Only the Blue Boat races on the 4th April 2021: What’s it like splitting the squad?

I feel really honoured to get to be a part of the group allowed to return. On the other side of that, I feel so gutted for all the rowers who weren’t able to return as they’ve been doing all the tough land training as well, so for them not to be able to show what they can do on the water is really sad.

Is it strange to train without the reserve eight?

It is quite strange to be training without Osiris, especially as last time we were on the water there were a lot more people around, so it kind of feels like some people have just disappeared almost.

How did it feel getting back on the water?

I found it so nice just being back with everyone and being able to be training together again. It did feel a bit weird as it has been a while since I’ve had to cox but once we got going it was all fine.

Why do you want to beat Cambridge?

I want to beat Cambridge to show that all the hours and all the training have paid off and that we are just the better squad.