Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Henley girls help GB win in Belgium

Henley girls help GB win in Belgium

TWO Henley Rowing Club junior girls helped Great Britain triumph at this year’s Coupe de la Jeunesse held in Hazewinkel, Belgium.

The Coupe de la Jeunesse is a junior competition for boys and girls between 13 European nations held over three days.

Ella Morgan and Georgie Robinson Ranger were selected to represent Great Britain following a series of trials that started last September. Morgan was selected for the coxless four and eight and Robinson Ranger the double.

The girls’ eight races on the Friday were a straight final with only seven nations entering a crew. France and England set the pace and finished well clear of the rest of the field with France just winning by 0.24 seconds with Morgan settling for silver.

Saturday mornings saw both Robinson Ranger in the double and Morgan in the coxless four win their heats. In the final Morgan had a comfortable victory leading from the start and beating France into second place by more than two lengths.

Robinson Ranger’s doubles race was much tighter with five boats still overlapping at halfway, by 1,250m the Spanish had pulled out to clear water and Poland were in second place and GB third, by 1,500m Spain led by seven seconds and the Netherlands had pulled past Poland and were tied with Great Britain for third. Going into the last 500m Spain were tiring and Netherlands and Great Britain remained tied but could not quite chase the Spanish down who took gold. Netherlands were second and GB third but with less than a length between all three boats.

Sunday morning’s heats saw Morgan’s four again have a comfortable victory but in the double Robinson Ranger finished third in a race that was planned to conserve energy. In Sunday’s, final Morgan’s four showed that this was possibly the top British boat with another comfortable six-second victory over the French with Spain 10 seconds behind in third.

Morgan’s doubles race was again another hard fought event, the Spanish setting the early pace and Great Britain, the Netherlands and Switzerland level pegging through the first 1,250m of the race.

Good mid-race pace from Robinson Ranger and her Isle of Ely crew mate Kate Lyster at 1,250m saw them drop the rest of the field and with 500m to go they had clear water on the Netherlands and were overlapping the leading Spanish crew. Throughout the last 500m the gap on the Netherlands continued to open up and the Spanish lead to be reduced, the final margin was Spain gold one second ahead of Great Britain who in turn finished six seconds ahead of the Netherlands.

The final tally was two golds and a silver for Morgan and a silver and bronze for Robinson Ranger with Great Britain winning both the boys’ and girls’ trophies and the overall event.

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