Interview with Gintare Scheidt [LTU]

Gintare Scheidt – past world champion, married to Robert Scheidt and Mum to two young boys, talks to Jeff Martin about Rio after the Laser Radial Worlds awards ceremony!

Five world champions in the top seven on the podium and you were one of them. How did it feel?
Well I did my maximum and I came fifth and I’m happy with this.

The competition is so hot in the Laser Radial. Since the class became Olympic no one has ever won twice. There is always a new champion coming in. Paige Railey nearly got it this time and Lily Xu had a bad day yesterday but she seems to be back on form and still a threat.
How are you feeling going into Rio?

It is really exciting as it’s not long now. I only started my campaign just two years before the Olympics. I wasn’t going to do it but then I changed my mind and I’m here now in the top five in the world. I will do my best because I decided if I’m going to do it I’m going to do it at my maximum with the biggest goal. So now I’m really focused on it. It’s like our family journey because its not only me its also my husband (Robert Scheidt). We have lots of things to sort out and organise – like tickets, etc. So we just want to enjoy the journey because it’s not the first Olympics for us and we know that it goes so fast. When it’s over then it’s sad. So Robert and I keep reminding ourselves to just enjoy improving and enjoy this ride to the Olympics.

And you have two children?
Yes Erik and Lucas – 6 and 3 years old.

Do they follow you and Robert? Do they know what’s going on?
Yes for sure – everyday we talk and they try to give me some tips. I tell them my story and what happened that day. Erik always says “Mummy you can do it, you can do it” and then he says “Come home soon”. They are really proud when we do well – you can see it in their eyes. Erik is going to come to the Olympics with us but Lucas is a bit too young so is staying with my mother in Lithuania!

Before racing I try to think of the positive things in life and happy moments so I think about my children and my husband. It doesn’t matter how well you do in a regatta – the best thing is to go back and hug your kids.

Does Robert ever give you advice or tips?
I think I’m going to give Robert tips as he will race after me on the same track so he will be waiting for my overview of the regatta.

For sure I’m going to give him lots of information. If he doesn’t do well I will be very disappointed.

Do you train together?
No – we talk about it but we don’t train together. He has his own training partners and we have our own schedules but there are some times when it is just the two of us out on the lake when we go out. That is great.

Do you discuss your campaign with each other?
Everyday we talk about it as it is a big part of our life right now. It is what we are aiming for and so everyday we talk about mistakes and the important things we need to do to get ready. When you get into the routine of family life it’s a distraction.

It must be good for both of you to have someone to talk to who has done it before and knows what it is all about!
Robert is my biggest supporter in all this. That is why I am here and that is why I am doing this – he really helps me a lot with everything and he supports me and I have help to stay with my family. I am lucky to be here. I keep thanking god that I can do this!

Well thank you for your time and giving us an insight on how you make it all work.