TOP DUO: Alyce Burnett and Alyssa Bull are set for the Olympics as part of the kayak team and will compete at The Aussies as well as training.
TOP DUO: Alyce Burnett and Alyssa Bull are set for the Olympics as part of the kayak team and will compete at The Aussies as well as training. Warren Lynam

Racing mixed with training

THERE is no rest for Rio-bound Olympic kayakers Alyssa Bull and Alyce Burnett who can't wait to be part of this weekend's Aussies finals at Maroochydore en route to this year's Games.

The K2 partners could not bear the thought of just "looking on" at this year's Australian Championships on their home beaches.

But they had to do some swift talking to Olympic coach Anna Wood, who has accompanied the girls to the Sunshine Coast to continue their training for their Olympic debuts in August.

The fact is when they arrive at the beach each day, they have already had a training session at the Sunshine Coast Canoe club and a gym session, and after their carnival commitments they are back for anther session on the water.

Bull, a Nipper at Alexandra Headland at the age of six, and Burnett, who started at Maroochydore aged seven, will realise their sporting dreams when they wear the green and gold of Australia at the Olympic Games.

"It is still sinking in; it is such a big achievement. It's a massive sporting event for the whole world; I'm still stoked and all my training now is for the Games," said Bull, who admitted some 'home loving' is working a treat.

"We are training through Aussies, our coach Anna Wood has allowed us to come down and have a few races with the girls.

"Even being part of the team events, I have been here since I was six, is so good; to put this cap on every day is special.

"We talked about it for a long time with our coaches down on the Gold Coast, and we agreed Anna would come with us and we would still train through it. We've only got 105 days to Rio.

"I did the ski relay with legends Kirsty Holmes and Kristy Ellis (nee Munroe), which was an honour and we came away with a sixth which we were really happy with.

"We have the Taplin on Sunday and hopefully I'll sneak into that ski final on Sunday as well."

And while they will be joined at the hip for their Rio Games assault, they will be at opposite ends of the beach when it comes to the Aussies.

"I couldn't miss an Aussies on our home beach," said Burnett.

"We are the reigning Taplin relay champions from last year and it was the first in our club's history. It would be sweet to go back to back on my home beach with Ella Brown and Steph Cronin.

"That's what we are hoping for and the single ski is wide open this year with Naomi Flood retiring from surf lifesaving last year, there are a lot of good girls coming through the ranks."

Both Bull and Burnett looked the goods yesterday, winning their heats of the open single ski. The final will be on Sunday and a taste of Aussies gold would be the perfect appetiser as they prepare to realise an Olympic dream.



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