AuthorPaul Woowat

Juniors win Gold at JIRR 2017

Thames London Junior Rowing Team

Guildford Rowing Club Juniors have taken Gold at a national rowing event .

The J14 coxed quad of Eddie Vaughan, Richard Loch, Joe Bryant, Josh Ingram and Conrad Wells (cox) were at Nottingham Holme Pierrepont for the 2017 Junior Inter-Regional Regatta on Saturday, April 22nd.

 They had seen off strong competition at Hampton on April 2nd to be selected to represent Thames London region.

 Conditions on the day were perfect, with little wind and blue skies. The boys, wearing Thames London’s purple instead of GRC’s customary green and yellow, took a commanding lead in their heat and qualified for the ‘A’ Final, with the best time of all eleven competing crews.

 In the ‘A’ Final the six fastest teams competed in a side-by-side race. Guildford found themselves up against particularly strong crews from Trentham and  City of Bristol, who had beaten them to Gold and Silver at the Oarsport Sculling head in March. There was no room for complacency.

The very close and exciting race saw Guildford and Bristol lead from the start. It was neck and neck for the full length of the 1500m course. In a nail-biting finish the GRC crew gave it everything they had and won by a canvas, shaving nearly 10 seconds off their previous best time.

 Thames London went on to win Victor Ludorum as the most successful region of the competition.

 Head Junior Coach Richard Turpin said “This was a big moment for Guildford Rowing Club. Not only did they win a gold medal in a prestigious national event, but they were part of a regional team that won the over-all gold for most successful region.”

Club Captain Rachel Spruce said ” I couldn’t be prouder of what our Juniors and their dedicated coaching team have accomplished. To not only qualify for this national event for the first time in the club’s history, but to then go on and win it is an incredible achievement for all involved.”

Emma Dodd

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Abingdon – five out of six!

Abingdon Head was hot on Sunday. The weather was more like summer than spring, with endless sunshine, a light stream and a tail wind which brought out the best for Guildford with five wins from six entries.

The event lacks some of the usual Junior numbers due to Easter Holidays but there was a good turn out of club crews from across the country. With up to 90 crews in each of four divisions racing over 2000 metres, a good warm up for the Regatta season ahead.

There were particularly good results for the women: the Senior Quad of Annika, Jackie, Jaime and Lenka set off at a brisk 33 to win their category in a time 17 seconds faster than the next women’s quad and placed them 24th overall, close to the fastest women’s crew of the day, an 8+ from Worcester.

Jackie and Lenka had planned to double up as a Masters B 2x but Lenka pulled a muscle in the closing stretch of the Quad race. When Jackie went to race control to scratch, she found Helen “in office” helping out her old club with the organisation; a quick substitution, some borrowed kit and the “scratch” pairing won with a comfortable margin of 28 seconds in the fastest Senior women’s 2x time of the day. Further testimony to the benefits of rowing as a squad and good reward for perseverance with common technique on the water and training in the gym.

The Men’s squad were not to be outdone. Rob Hall partnered with Jeff Watling of Southsea to record another Masters G/H 2x win, this time by just 1 second over their Southampton rivals BTC; while Mark and Richard made it another win for ‘Roger’ in Masters D 2x. The Quad of Dominic, Jake, Chris and Colin have only been on the water once together but they rowed together well and took ‘Helene’ to a win in their Men’s 4x category.

Well done all, next event for the Seniors: Marlow Spring on May 1st when we look forward to a good all-club day.
Peter Scott

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Juniors Qualify for JIRR Finals in Nottingham

Guildford Rowing Club’s junior squad have hit a new high this week. Their J14 coxed quad, Eddie Vaughan, Richard Loch, Joe Bryant, Josh Ingham and cox, Conrad Wells, took part in the JIRR regional trials at Millennium Boathouse, Hampton yesterday. The boys beat Walton Rowing Club in a timed trial cover 1500m but an impressive 8.5 seconds and have qualified to represent Thames London region at the Junior Inter-Regional Finals in Nottingham on April 22nd.
Junior Head Coach, Richard Turpin, said “This is a tremendous result for Guildford Rowing Club as a whole. The boys rowed superbly. We need to bear in mind that all the clubs we row against train on the Thames, which make our achievement even more impressive. This is a testament to the extraordinary level of commitment given to the junior club by all the coaches and young people, who train on both land and the river. ”
The boys were entered for the JIRR trials after winning bronze at the Oarsport Junior Head at Dorney Lake on March 25th, where they competed against 63 teams from all over the UK.
Club Captain Rachel Spruce said “We are so proud of our J14’s. All their hard work and training, and that of their coaches, has really paid off.”
In Nottingham the crew will be competing against boys from 11 other regions of Britain.
Guildford Rowing Club, whose members include Paralympian Gold winner Rachel Morris, is currently raising funds for an exciting re-development which will make the club more accessible for adaptive rowers and enhance the club’s central ethos of making rowing available to all.

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