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Dow Diary: Day one on the Sunshine Coast

Russell: Blues to up the ante Andrew Russell spoke with Carlton Media on day one of pre-season camp on the Sunshine Coast.
We want to build together as a group, and even from the earliest signs, camp is only going to make that stronger.
Paddy Dow

THIS time 12 months ago, I headed into training camp not knowing what to expect.

Nervous. Excited. A complete unknown.

Now, if today is anything to go by (on top of last year’s experience), there’s a lot of hard work ahead. The reward at the end makes it all worthwhile.

I was fortunate enough to play 20 games of AFL in my debut season, but it wasn’t easy — physically and mentally. But my teammates helped me get through.

Those moments are why training camp and pre-seasons are so important.

As a team, we want to get better each day. We know we have to be better.

Paddy Dow on the opening day of the pre-season training camp in the Sunshine Coast. (Photo: Carlton Media)

I’m lucky enough to be in the position where I’m learning off Crippa, Murph and Ed every day. It’s not just me: it’s blokes like Samo, Fish, Setters, Matty Kennedy and Walshy who are in the same boat.

For the next five days, it’s more than just what happens on the track. It’s been drummed into us from the outset: this next week means more than that.

We’re living together, eating together, spending our down-time together and doing really big training sessions together.


Today, it started off with four hours on the track in the morning. From there, it was a quick feed, then back out for a gym session. Every second was spent together as a group.

I think we’ve always been tight-knit, but this pre-season there have been even more reasons to come together. Not just us, but you guys as well.

We have even more reason to be a tighter unit. From the young players like myself to older guys like Daisy and Kade, we’re all in this together.


I can comfortably say that since I was lucky enough to be drafted here at the end of 2017, the morale, motivation and energy has never been higher.

We want to do the fans proud and we want to do the Carlton Football Club proud. We want to build together as a group, and even from the earliest signs, camp is only going to make that stronger.

It’s no secret for us, we were told as soon as we arrived that this camp was the time to raise the bar and take it to the next level. From Bolts, the coaches, the high performance staff and the leaders, that message has been consistent.

I’m looking forward to bringing all the updates to you over the next week and bring you on the journey with us. Go Blues!