Six of the best at Staines Regatta
Under a hot, blue sky the women’s squads made the short journey to Staines, joined by a contingent from the recent Intermediate Sculling Course. A fantastic day of racing produced six wins including several novice wins and a one point it looked like we might close in on the Victor Ludorum, but that wasn’t to be for 2016 despite two wins late in the day.
Women’s novice fours
Two crews entered and ultimately both fell victim to the same crew. In the quarter final, the first four fell to Twickenham RC by 2 1/4 lengths. The other entry had a bye into the semi-final and faced a confident crew from Ardingly. The race was incredibly close, but the Town rowed through from being almost a length down to win by just 6 feet to progress into the final against Twickenham. Twickenham proved too quick, despite a strong second half of the race from the Town in which the deficit was reduced to just 3/4 length. Congratulations to Twickenham for an impressive win.
Women’s Intermediate 3 Coxed Fours
Ultimately victorious, but only after this crew had started more races than any other at the regatta after both the quarter-final and final were called back to the start after “unusual” steering from the Town’s opposition on both occasions.
At the second attempt, the Town started well to pull clear after 20 very hard fought strokes but the race came to an effective early conclusion as Kingston suffered a mechanical failure leaving just their stern pair to complete the course. In the semi-final the girls faced an Ardingly crew, shortly after the novice four had narrowly beaten a crew from the same club. This race avoided the drama of both the race against Kingston and the nerve-wracking finale of the novices’ win as despite a strong finish from Ardingly the margin built up from the start and through the middle was just too much to catch and the Town crossed the line first, comfortably. The final again saw drama on the start line as Bradford University crashed into the bank after confusion in their crew as the umpire’s flag started the race. Despite completing the course and the umpires being satisfied the result could stand, the request was made to re-row the race. We knew that was the right thing to do, and we wanted to win it properly, so we paddled back up to the start for the fifth time… And what a start! Hitting rate 45 as the power strokes came meant the race was only such for not much longer than the first attempt, with the Town cruising home to a 5 length victory in the final race of the day. Re-racing had been the right thing: the win was indisputably deserved. Congratulations to both Rosabella and Jade for winning their first point.
Winning crew: Sophie Bluff, Lucy Harper, Rosabella Styles, Jade Gowen, Peter Jones (cox)
Women’s novice singles
Sophie and Rosabella were drawn in separate semi-finals in the women’s novice singles event and both moved through to the final. Sophie was pushed nearly all the way by a Reading RC sculler to win by 1 1/2 lengths while Rosabella had an easier time beating her opponent from Oxford Academicals. Onto the all-PTRC final and Sophie took the win over her squad-mate by 2 1/2 lengths in a clean, well-contested race. Congratulations to Sophie for winning her first sculling point.
Winner: Sophie Bluff
Intermediate Sculling Course entries
A number of participants from the recent sculling course entered at the regatta. First up was Paul and Clare in their mixed masters double, who overcame a handicapped start to beat Bewl Bridge by a comfortable margin of 4 1/2 lengths.
Next was Colin and Kenji in the novice doubles, who beat Hillingdon RC by 3 lengths. They went on to face another Hillingdon double in the final, and despite an incredibly close race came on the wrong side of a 3 ft margin.
Sam had a straight final against a sculler from Oxford Academicals. After a sluggish start which put her behind her opposition, her cruising speed was the quicker of the two and she shortly after took the lead. The pressure of falling behind then drew a race-ending mistake as Sam’s opposition capsized, leaving Sam to row over easily for the win.
Having won their heat together in the double, Kenji and Colin then went head to head in the MasC novice singles final. In a well matched, and well raced, race Kenji led Colin all the way to claim a 1/2 length victory over his squad-mate.
In another straight final, Paul faced opposition from Twickenham RC. Coming into the enclosures Paul was trailing by almost one length but to the roaring sound of his club’s fans he mounted an impressive assault on the final line, but unfortunately was unable to fully overcome the deficit and fell just 4 feet short of another win.
MxMasE.2x – Paul Debois, Clare Allen
MasCNov.1x – Kenji Kadokami
WMasCNov.1x – Sam Atkinson-Jones
Master’s women’s coxed four
The masters women were the fourth coxed four crew from the Town to race. In the semi-final they dispatched a crew from home-club Staines, holding on to their start handicap to lead at the finish by 1/2 length. In the final they faced another Staines crew and the face followed the same pattern as the Town held on to a handicapped start against a younger crew to cross the line 1/2 length ahead.
Winning crew: Liz Stoyel, Heather MacPhersom, Mary Mortimer, Simone Frehe, Craig Harvey-Judd (cox)
Masters women’s crews
In other races, the masters women’s quad fell to a defeat to Eton Excelsior by 2 1/2 lengths, while Camilla was defeated by a sculler from Twickenham RC.