Thursday, 07 July 2022

Henley and Shiplake crews win gold at schools’ regatta

Henley and Shiplake crews win gold at schools’ regatta

HENLEY Rowing Club, Shiplake College and Leander Club all returned from last weekend’s National Schools’ Regatta, laden with medals.

Henley bagged an impressive six gold medals and a bronze, Shiplake one gold, three silver and a bronze and Leander two silvers at the Dorney Lake event which attracted 5,000 competitors aged 14 to 18 from across the UK and Ireland.

After a first round time trial Henley’s WJ14s got both their A and B crews into the seven-boat final. Jemima Butterworth, Molly Hall, Chloe Hughes, Jemima Painter and cox Florence French won gold by four seconds with Wimbledon High School finsihing second. Henley’s B crew finished sixth, with only three seconds between the five remaining boats.

The WJ15s also progressed to the A final and a gutsy performance from Josie Savin, Nicolette Pagdin, Lilya Wild, Freya Smith and cox Nicole Bielinski saw them come from the back of the field early in the race to take the bronze medal.

The five then teamed up with Annie Hunt, Jessica Mack, Holly Fuller and Florence Short to race in girls’ J15 first eights. From the time trial Henley progressed to the semi finals where they finished fourth which put them in the B final which they won convincingly.

The girls’ J16 first eight of Anna Merritt, Florence Lenthall, Daisy Janes, Sophia Spanswick, Emily Simmons, Ella Dickson, Emma Eltze, Sophie Eltze and cox Matilda Ley won the time trial, won their semi final and led the final from the first stroke to take a convincing win and gold seven seconds ahead of St Paul’s Girls’ School.

The event for clubs second eights is run together with the championship eights so whilst the crew of Yasmin Lakatos, Ruby Rodger, Karima Erbolat, Ella McKay, Abilene Artherton, Amelia Sterjo, Evie Tinegate, Keira Delaney and cox Caitlin Emery finished ninth in the time trial, fourth in their semi and eighth in A final they where the only second eight to make it to the A final and therefore took the gold medal for girls’ second eights.

Henley won the top event of the regatta, the championship eight. The crew of Natalie Schoenmakers, Lucy Jones, Rhiannon Luke, Josie Sawbridge, Ailish Harkin, Pippa Jamieson, Blair Fitzgerald, Laoise O’Donohue and cox Rose McEwen controlled their time trial which saw them finish third and qualify for the A/B semi finals winning their semi by six seconds.

In the final St Edward’s School led going into the 500m mark but this was the last time anybody was ahead of the Henley crew as they steadily pulled away from the rest of the field to finish with clear water between them and Surbiton High School in second place.

Henley’s J16 girls competed in the quad scull events and unlike the eights, the race for second crews was run as a separate event. Evie Bell, Ella Smith, Sophie Freudenberg, Francesca Reeves easily won the time trial and went straight to the A final which they also won easily finishing 10 seconds ahead of Sir William Perkins School.

The top Henley J16 quad of Matilda Macartney, Gwennie Hunter, Tabitha Hall, Freya Weiser finished 14 seconds ahead of second place Sir William Borlase’s in the time trial, the semi final and 14 seconds ahead of Sir William Perkins School and in the final Henley won by 27 seconds ahead of Wycliffe Junior Rowing Club to secure gold.

Shiplake College had 78 athletes entered in the event with their first eight finishing their time trial in second place and runners-up in their semi-final.

In the final Eton College went off fast and led the pack all the way down the course whilst Shiplake, St Edward’s and Kings College School tussled for a medal position.

The Shiplake crew was sitting in second at the 500m mark but the other crews were hot on their heels and they ended up finishing fourth with just one second separating them and second place.

The second eight of Tom Madden, Ed Humphris, Rocco Pritchard, Luke Byca, Ned Floyd, Tom Houghton, Toby Rackett, Felix Arkle and cox Charlie Keena got the fastest time trial in their category, then came second in their semi-final.

In the final Radley led the field and whilst Shiplake was in second position at the 500m they spent the next 1,000m in third place, pulling it back again in the final 500m to take the silver.

In a straight final for the third eights, the Shiplake crew of Leo Creighton, Sylvan Verzone, Matthew Provoost, Gus Elliott, Fin Worthington, Nick Summerfield, Harrison Harper, Louis Swinburne-Johnson and cox Ollie Joiner chased Radley down the course and whilst they were unable to close the gap, they finished in second place to secure silver.

The four Shiplake girls’ crews secured gold in the coxed four, silver in the first quad, bronze in the double and a fifth place finish in the second quad. Shiplake finished fifth in their time trial of the championships coxed four, and second in their semi-final. In the final the crew of Ellie Webb, Gesa Hallmann, Hannah Boddy, Casey Green and cox Monty Walker started strongly and were leading at the 500m mark, slipping to second at halfway but working back past the Tideway Scullers’ School to finish in first place by four seconds.

In the championship doubles, Shiplake’s Megan Hadfield and Maya Jackson finished second in their time trial and second in their semi-final. In the final they led at the first 500m but slipped to second behind Sir William Perkins at the halfway point and then the strength of Tideway Scullers’ Schooll came through to win gold. Shiplake finished in third place to secure bronze. In the girls’ championship quad event there was just 0.11 of a second between Marlow’s first and Shiplake’s third in the time trial. The Shiplake crew of Mia Vickerman, Scarlett Maleham, Jess Weir and Merry Oakes won their semi-final. In the final Marlow went out strong and whilst Shiplake were in third place at the 500m they closed the gap on Marlow and by the finish line they moved up to second place and were just 1.77 seconds behind as they settled for silver.

Leander Club’s championship quad sculls crew of Henry White, Sergej Vujosevic, Nathaniel Gauden and Frederick Woodall finished third in their time trial, first in their semi-final before picking up a silver medal in a closely fought final behind Windsor Boys’ School and Claires Court. The boys managed to improve upon their result from the tiem trial, finishing first in their semi final and second overall in a closely fought A final.

In the single sculls Leander had two entries with James Graham and Zachary Charles finishing fourth and 21st respectively in their time trials.

Graham finished second in his semi-final before picking up silver in the A final which saw him row through from fifth position to second in the closing 500m of the race.

With minimal racing experience and only a full year of rowing under his belt, Charles pulled off a close win in the C final with just 0.8 seconds seperating the first four finishers.

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