Alison Borrows turns 21 on Monday. It is just one of several significant milestones she will have reached in 2013.
The Penrith-based paddler stepped up to the Australian senior slalom team this year, and this weekend she’ll compete in the C1 and C1 team at the World Championships in Prague.
“It’s been a long season, I’ve been over here for three months, but in that time I got a fourth in the World Cup in Cardiff, which I was pretty happy about, and a bronze in the team events at the U23 World Champs,” Borrows said.
“But I’m looking for a good result here.”
Setting targets this year, besides having something fantastic to celebrate at her 21st, was easy.
“To do sport you have to set goals if you want to do well,” she said.
“Mainly my goals, because I’d never been on the senior team before, was getting that experience, racing these tour events. They’re big events for me, so it was good to see what I could put out there and how well I could race.
“We’ve done a lot of races this year, a lot of races close together which I’m not used to. I’m used to coming over to Europe for one race and then the junior worlds. I’m not used to doing the same race over and over, so I’d say that’s one of the main differences.
“And the racing’s a real step up. Everyone is so much faster, and the competition is a lot harder. I’m always wanting to go faster and always wanting to go better.”
Like her C1 teammates, Jessica Fox and Ros Lawrence, Borrows desperately wants to see the women’s C1 added to the Rio Olympic program. Being the least experienced of the trio doesn’t make her any less vociferous.
“All the girls are going well, so we have to push C1 ladies for Rio still,” she said.
“We always have to keep pushing for it, it’s really not fair to have three men’s races and one girls. A lot of people just don’t realise that.”
And to the argument that Australia is only pushing for C1 through self-interest?
“Australia’s good at it and we are pushing it, but we’re good because we’re supporting our athletes in our events so that means our athletes are doing well in it,” she said.
“If other countries did the same thing they’d have the same success as us.”
Once this weekend, and her birthday celebrations, are over, Borrows plans to take a couple of weeks off.
But not too long though. She’s already set one of her major goals for next year – starring at the Under 23 World Championships on her home course at Penrith.
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