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Page last updated at 11:05 GMT, Friday, 20 August 2010 12:05 UK

Debbie Flood targeting 2012 London Olympic Games

Debbie Flood
Flood was a Great Britain junior judo international before she took up rowing

Rower Debbie Flood is targeting the 2012 London Olympics after taking a year off from the sport to qualify as a prison officer.

The 30-year-old, who lives in Henley, won a silver medal in the women's quadruple scull at both Athens in 2004 and Beijing in 2008.

She told BBC Berkshire: "A year out was fantastic and entirely what I needed.

"But I want to prove I am capable of the standard needed to make the team so I'm hopeful I can be in the quad."

Flood added: "In my year off, I did perhaps one session every other day rather than the usual three a day.

"This made a big difference. I came back into rowing and thought I was fit and strong but I realised it is all relative to what you need to be for Olympic standards."

Flood, a world champion in 2006 and 2007, has entered various events since returning to full-time rowing to improve her performance and fitness.

"There was a big gap between me and the other rowers and it has taken me a long time to claw back up that gap," said Flood.

"I started off in the 2010 World Cup series and came ninth which was a starting place for me.

"Then I increased my speed throughout the season and trained more and ended up in Lucerne where I made the 'A' final after coming fifth, which was a really good result for me."

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