SPENCER Turrin respects the history of the Oarsome Foursome and is relishing an opportunity to don the national uniform in that same boat class at his second Olympics.
The Dungog rower will team up with fellow Rio representative Alex Hill plus Games debutants Jack Hargreaves and Alex Purnell as the men's fours try to knock off five-time defending champions Great Britain and improve upon three straight silver medals.
Turrin, who was recently selected for this crew after being part of the pairs five years ago, has seen Australia stand on the podium in that same event at almost every Olympics during his lifetime.
The most famous of these were breakthrough performances, by the original Oarsome Foursome, with back-to-back golds in 1992 and 1996.
Personnel for the Aussie men's fours changed significantly but bronze followed on home waters in 2000. They missed out in 2004, however, rebounded as runner-up in 2008, 2012 and 2016.
"They've definitely had a good history in the past in this boat class and done some amazing things those guys," Turrin told the Newcastle Herald.
Now, himself a member of that same team, Turrin feels "excited" and wants to experience his own medal ceremony in Tokyo.
"It's definitely a driver [to medal]. We're not just going over to fill the numbers or to get the uniform," he said.
"We definitely want to compete and compete well."
Turrin has claimed five medals with the men's fours at world championships, featuring back-to-back golds in 2017 and 2018.
The 29-year-old begins his Tokyo campaign with heats on Saturday (1:10pm, AEST).
The top-two finishers out of Australia, Romania, Netherlands, South Africa and United States automatically progress to Wednesday's final (11:10am) while the remaining countries contest repechage on Monday (12:10pm).
Turrin, who ended up sixth in the pairs final with Alex Lloyd in Rio, says "I'm happy to be picked in the crew that I've been picked in" having missed the men's fours last time around.
"I enjoy the boat class [fours]. They've all got their own challenges, but it's just another opportunity," he said.
Tokyo will mark the first time this particular combination has rowed together internationally with coronavirus having halted a lot of competition over the last 18 months and the most recent 2019 World Championships used to qualify more Aussie boats for the Olympics.
"We train as a squad down in Canberra and row with everyone down there," he said.
Turrin was born and bred in Dungog before moving to Sydney for boarding school at St Joseph's, where he was first introduced to rowing.
He's been based in Canberra for the last decade as part of the men's national program.
The youngest of four siblings, Turrin returned home during last year's COVID lockdown and spent time with his parents in Stockton, where they now live, training out of the garage.
The Australian rowing squad have been in camp in Rockhampton this month, touching down in Tokyo over the weekend.
"All you want is a chance to get to the Olympics," Turrin said.
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