Friday, 20 July 2018

Henley juniors strike gold at Ghent regatta

HENLEY Rowing Club’s junior girls and senior men returned from Belgium’s Ghent regatta with gold, silver

HENLEY Rowing Club’s junior girls and senior men returned from Belgium’s Ghent regatta with gold, silver and bronze medals.

The junior girls, who are preparing for the Natoinal Schools Regatta at the end of the month, won three gold and three silver medals over the two-day event that attracted crews from all over Europe.

The Henley J18 girls’ crew of Alicia Redman, Georgia Edwards, Amy Sotnick and Emma Lister, competing in the coxless fours, had comfortable victories over Irish crews from Cork and Dublin, but a mixed Belgium crew who are part of the Belgium national squad proved too strong for the crew.

Whilst in both Saturdays and Sunday’s events the Henley four challenged to halfway, the strong head wind worked in the Belgians’ favour. The host crew secured gold on both days with Henley picking up the silver medals.

In the junior quads event Ella Morgan, Lauren Kay, Clare Pearson and Florence Wiggins were up against more than 20 crews.

On Saturday in their heat the quad had a comfortable victory but had to wait on the results of the other heats to know if they had done enough for an outright win. In the end their closest rival SN Perreux of France were some 12 seconds behind. The Henley quad repeated their victory on Sunday where the races are seeded based on Saturdays results so the fastest crews get to race one another.

The two crews combined to race in junior eights with cox Freya Reid. On Saturday with opposition from Ireland and Belgium in a straight final Henley took an early lead which they extended to 20 seconds by the finish. On Sunday the Belgians put a national squad crew together. This resulted in a tight race with the Belgians taking an early lead which they extended to three-quarters of a length by half way, but with 500m to go Henley pulled it back and nudged in front. The race was neck and neck up to the enclosures before the Belgians crossed the line first with a final push.

Meanwhile the Henley senior men’s young pair of Leon Redman and Brendan Edwards, both aged 20, competed in the U23 pairs event on both days.

Saturday saw them win a silver medal finishing behind a strong mixed German crew, both of whom had recently gained representative honours in the German national squad. On Sunday the pair executed their race plan well and were leading at the 1,000m mark, showing good speed and technique, but eventually finished in third place behind two mixed German crews.

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