Thursday, 21 September 2017

Upper Thames athletes bag six trophies on home waters

Upper Thames athletes bag six trophies on home waters

HENLEY’S Upper Thames Rowing Club took home six trophies at this year’s Henley Masters Regatta while Henley Rowing Club also chalked up a win.

Upper Thames’s women’s D eight of Juliet Machan, Judith Byrne, Miriam Luke, Louise Wymer, Naomi Ashcroft, Sally Pollock-Morris, Elise Cope, Helen Mangan and Jo Wilby won in their category after defeating Putney Town by two lengths in the final of the two-day regatta on Saturday.

Sculler Bob Gullett won in the H singles, beating Sean Morris of Wallingford Rowing Club by a length-and-a-half, while Pete Jacobs and Dan Sadler won the E pairs by three-and-a-quarter lengths over a composite pair from Hollingworth Lake Rowing Club and Newark Rowing Club.

Nick Horne and Mark Tritton won the C pairs by two lengths over an Ardingly Rowing Club and Maidstone Invicta Rowing Club composite.

Meanwhile Sean Collinson, of Henley Rowing Club, won the E singles by a length-and-a-half against Duncan Gwilliam, of Stourport Rowing Club.

Two composite crews featuring Upper Thames members also won their finals. David Hope was part of a composite with Bradford-on-Avon Rowing Club who won the E coxless fours against Ardingly Rowing Club while Tim Lincoln won in the H coxless fours alongside members of Minerva Bath and Ardingly clubs, beating a crew from his own club.

Meanwhile, an Upper Thames men’s H quad were defeated by a composite crew from Durham and Wallingford rowing clubs and Quintin Boat Club.

A men’s C coxless four lost by a canvas in their final against Rob Roy Boat Club while an Upper Thames and Shiplake Vikings composite men’s F double scull of Upper Thames’ Jeremy Dobbin and Vikings’ Bruce Gascoine were defeated by Tideway Scullers’ School. An Upper Thames men’s B quad lost their final by two feet to a Star Club and Peterborough City composite and a men’s G coxless four of Walter Scott, Willy Almand, Lee Brown and Paul Stuart-Bennett were defeated by Australia’s Toowong Rowing Club.

A women’s C eight lost by two lengths to a Canadian composite crew from Don Boat Club and Toronto Sculling Club and a men’s G eight lost by two-thirds of a length to their rivals from Quintin Boat Club.

Finally, Upper Thames’ Antonia van Deventer and Anna Van Leemputten lost in the final of the women’s C double sculls to Strathclyde Park Rowing Club.

About 1,400 athletes took part in this year’s 24th annual event, with some coming from as far afield as Brussels, Mexico and Argentina.

They included a winning women’s D quad from Cambridge Boat Club, of the United States, and Tideway Scullers School, which comprised former Olympians Annabel Eyres, Mary Mazzio, Cynthia Matthes and Andrea Thies.

The fastest time was recorded by London Rowing Club’s C eight, who completed the course in two minutes and 59 seconds, beating Crabtree Boat Club by half a length in their final. The oldest competitor was Howard Copping, 90, of Ross Rowing Club, who rowed in a G quad with his son Jerry.

Jennie Robb, the regatta’s events secretary, said: “It was a very successful regatta. The feedback we’ve had from visiting clubs is so positive in terms of how much they enjoyed it and how friendly everybody was.

“There is always a great ambience and a high standard of competition, plus great sportsmanship between the competitors.

“At one point, a single scull was knocked off the racks and damaged by a sudden gust of wind and a rower from Upper Thames let the owner use their boat so that they could compete in their final. That’s just typical of the supportive, friendly spirit of the event.

“The wonderful weather also helped. When the course is looking that beautiful, even the umpires have smiles on their faces all day.”

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