BOWLING: THOMAS Carter was going nowhere fast when he won the British Indoor Rowing Championships, but he has some exciting destinations lined up.
Carter, a former Sir John Deane's College student and promising Northwich Rowing Club oarsman, won the Under 23 Lightweight title. He collected a brace of gold and silver medals in six grand prix events across the country to take the title.
And as he recently turned 23 he had to step up to the open age category for his latest race at the Manchester Velodrome.
But the competition made no odds as he streaked to victory, racing to 2km in just 6:38.
Hi-tech rowing machines - called Concept 2 - are used for the races. Carter initially entered the series to improve his times in preparation for his Great Britain trials in October on water.
But the former Holmes Chapel Comprehensive School pupil surprised himself by his finishing positions, and admitted it was extra special to come out on top.
'I have trials for the Great Britain lightweight rowing squad later this year, and part of the trial is a 2km test on a rowing machine,' he said.
You have to be able to do 2km in 6:35, so this championship was perfect to get my times down. I am just a few seconds off now, so I hope to improve further in time for the GB trial.
'But the more grand prix events I went to, the more I discovered I was winning. In the end, I really wanted it, and snatched it by just a point.'
Now Carter, who has been rowing for five years and works at Astra Zeneca, near Macclesfield, is back on the water, training at least five times a week.
His dream is to take part in the 2012 Olympics, which could be at London.
But he insists it will be one step at a time. He didn't even like rowing at first!
'My brother Adam introduced me to it but I didn't like it at all,' he laughed.
'But as time goes by you get into it. My next aim to is to take part in the Henley Royal Regatta in the summer as Northwich plan to enter a team. Then I want to get into the GB lightweight squad.
'The ultimate would be to compete at an event like the Olympics. But for the time being it is one small step at a time.'
Not at a stroke! MEDAL MAN: Rower Thomas Carter shows off his medal.