Being at peak fitness for the Queensland Maroons and North Queensland Cowboys is demanding enough for a superstar like Reuben Cotter – but when you throw in more than 21,000km of travel for this season alone – you must go beyond your normal regime to stay at your peak.
For this year’s Ampol State of Origin series, the players representing the North Queensland Cowboys will travel from Townsville, to Adelaide, to Brisbane, and then finally to Sydney for game three. For Cotter, he deems packing his routine just as vital as packing his essentials, like his Normatecs.
“Sleep is a big one, even when travelling, I always try to get nine hours,” Cotter says. I ensure I prep before and after training and the same with flights. It’s a long way to Sydney from Townsville – nearly three hours – so you can tighten up in the air. I like to eat well, sleep well, and get a good stretch in.
“It feels like the Sydney teams are always at home and we’re travelling a lot, along with the Warriors, that makes it a tough part of the game, but that’s just the way it is. All you can do is go with the flow when you do travel, stretching extensively the night before, and ensuring a good recovery and sleep.”
“It’s a bit tougher with a young family, but luckily my little one is a good sleeper, so that means I can get a good sleep. Then, like I said, it comes down to stretching properly, ensuring you have the right recovery, and includes things like regular ice baths.
“It’s exciting to be headed to the Adelaide Oval for the first time for an Ampol State of Origin game – even with it being a neutral venue. I’m keen to see what the crowd will be like – I’m sure they’ll get behind it and I look forward to it. We can get them (the New South Wales Blues), for sure.”
Cotter thanked Stage and Screen, the iconic sports, entertainment, arts, and music travel company for ensuring the smoothest of journeys throughout the season.
“The boys and I are really appreciative of them flying us around, getting us from A to B, and ensuring we get there on time, so a big shout out to them, it’s excellent,” he said.
Stage and Screen General Manager Adam Moon said it was a privilege to be entrusted with the travel for the Queensland Maroons and Queensland Rugby League as a whole.
“By the end of the season, we would have managed over 140 flights, and safely transported more than 6,000 passengers to all corners of the country for multiple competitions,” Moon said.
“We’re proud that we run our business in a very different way to mainstream corporate companies – we consider ourselves to be genuine partners with our customers – not just their travel managers. They are relationships we hold dearly.
“We pride ourselves on being able to overcome any hurdle. There’s no doubt planning to win starts long before you take to the field and the same can be said of successful trips across an entire season. I pay tribute to the wider team that deliver expertise above and beyond to ensure runs smoothly all year long.”