The weather may not have been quite as hot as we were hoping, but we still had a great weekend at St. Neot's. We had a lot of crews make it through to finals and quite a few wins on the Saturday - let's hope for the same at Peterborough in 10 days time!
Winners: WMasC 8+ Karen, Paula, Jo, Jayne, Lisa, Suzanne, Alice, Jen, cox: Chris W; beat Broxbourne in final by 1/4 length
This was a straight final but a really exciting and deserving win. The ladies were behind off the start, but never panicked and hung right on to Broxbourne, gradually pushing past in the last third of the race to secure the win.
Winners: WMasCDE 4+ Karen, Paula, Jo, Suzanne, cox: Chris W; beat Star in semi final by 2 lengths, beat St Neots in final by 2 1/2 lengths
In both races our Masters C 4+ had to overcome an 18 second handicap to beat the other crews, who were Es. For our Henley veterans though this was no problem!
Winners: W 4x Maude, Jen, Jayne, Alice; beat Lincoln Rowing Centre in semi final easily, beat Isle of Ely in final by 4 lengths
Who says we can only sweep row? Some excellent steering by Alice (always useful at St. Neot's!) and good sculling by the rest of the crew saw them cruise to victories in both their races.
Winner: MasCDE 1x Steve L; beat Old Monmothians in heat by 3 lengths, beat Yare in semi final by 4 lengths, beat Rod in final by 1/2 length
MasCDE 1x Rod; beat Norwich in semi final by 2 lengths, lost to Steve L in final by 1/2 length
Sadly there was no competition for Rod and Steve's pair... so they ended up racing each other instead! Both of them made it comfortably through to the final, where a close battle in the wind (to quote Steve, "I survived the conditions better) saw Steve just come out on top.
Open 4+ John S, Charlie, Shaun, James, cox: Steve B; lost in heat to Norwich/Wallingford composite by 3 feet
This was one of our closest races of the weekend, with the crews very close all the way until the guys just lost out on the line. The crew were unlucky to come up against the eventual winners in their heat, and the fact that they lost by a smaller margin than anyone else means they are claiming a technical second place ;-)
Open 4+ Benn, Callum, Luca, Paul, cox: Steve L; lost in heat to Cygnet by 2 lengths
Our other 4+ came up against the other finalists in their heat, and couldn't quite get the better of them. Bearing in mind that they were racing in the top band, that this was Luca's first proper regatta, and Paul has been rowing less than a year, that's still awesome!
Open 4- James, Luca, Paul, Benn; beat London Otters in heat by 4 lengths, beat Lincoln Rowing Centre in semi by 1 length, lost to Northampton in final by 1 1/2 lengths
This crew had several really impressive races, especially from Luca who was at his first proper regatta. The final was a local derby against Northampton Rowing Club, which despite coming 2nd was actually an amazing result seeing as it was against a crew that had trialled at Henley this year.
Open 2- Charlie, Shaun; disqualified in heat
Shaun referred to this race as a "win on the water". Unfortunately some steering issues (totally understandable in the wind and narrow lanes!) meant that they were disqualified for interfering with the other crew a bit more than the other crew were interfering with them.
Open 2x Callum, John S; beat Curlew in heat easily, beat London Otters in semi easily, lost to Leeds in final by 1 1/2 lengths
Callum and John had two very impressive wins in the heat and semi-final, before coming up against a tough Leeds crew in the final, and not quite managing to come out on top after all their other racing that day.
WMasDEF 2x Trish, Liz F; lost to Sudbury in heat
Out racing for the first time, Trish and Liz struggled a little in the wind, but even more with the gazebo that was blown onto the course! It certainly made for an eventful first race.
WMasEF 1x Liz F; lost to Lea in semi final
Liz was racing in a regatta in her single (more than I've ever done...) and given the windy conditions was happy with her race. Hopefully she has learnt a lot and is looking forward to her next race, hopefully when it's a bit calmer.
W 8+ Karen, Paula, Jo, Suzanne, Alice, Clare, Jayne, Jen, cox: Chris W; lost in semi final to Maidstone Invicta by 1 length
With no masters competition on Sunday the ladies were up against a much younger crew than themselves. They gave it everything but couldn't beat Maidstone. Maidstone went on to beat the other crew in the final by 4 lengths, so it's a moral second place!
Open 4+ Band 1 John S, James, Shaun, Charlie, cox: Chris W; beat Leeds in semi final by 1 length, lost in final to Old Novicensians by 3/4 length
This crew had two good rows and couldn't have put in any more in the final, especially given all the other races they'd been doing in between! They all enjoyed the races, even if they sadly didn't come away with any pots.
Open 4+ Band 2 Benn, Les, Leo, Paul, cox: Steve B; beat London Otters in heat by 1 length, lost to City of Sheffield in semi final by 3 lengths
Our other 4+ couldn't quite find the rhythm of our first, comfortably(ish) despatching Otters in the first round, but losing out to Sheffield in the semi.
WMasCDE 4+ Karen, Paula, Jo, Suzanne, cox: Steve B; beat Star in semi final by 1 3/4 lengths, lost to Star in final by 3 lengths
Once again our masters women's 4+ had stiff handicaps to overcome, doing so in style against the first Star crew, but not managing to against the second.
Open 4- James, Les, Callum, Benn; beat Curlew in semi final easily, lost to Norwich in final by 1 length
Our men continued to have success in the coxless, winning their semi-final easily before losing to Norwich in the final. It's been ages since we've seen the men's squad racing in coxless boats - if they're this good then hopefully we'll see them again in the future!
Open 2- Charlie, Shaun; beat Leeds in heat by 3/5 length, lost to Bedford in semi final by 2 lengths
Overcoming their steering issues of the day before, Charlie and Shaun won their heat by an unusual winning margin. Perhaps struggling a bit with all the races they were enthusiastically having crammed into their afternoon, they couldn't beat Bedford in the semi.
Open 2x Band 2 Callum, John S; lost to Leeds in heat by 3/4 length
Callum and John had a good race but came up against a tough Leeds crew who they couldn't quite get the better of.
Open 2x Band 3 Chris H, Ian; lost to Norwich in heat
Chris H had great fun in his first proper sculling race - always a bit of an experience!
W 2x Jayne, Alice; lost to City of Sheffield in heat by 4 lengths
Thrown in with all the women's scullers in one big band, Jayne and Alice were unlucky to come up against the eventual winners (by some margin) in their heat. Hopefully they won't be disheartened and will be keen to keep up some sculling racing!
W 2x Maude, Jen; lost to Leeds in heat
This was a great experience building race for Maude and Jen, who moved on from the quad yesterday to a double today, just to see if they could.
WMasEF 2x Trish, Liz F; lost to Oundle in semi final by 4 lengths
Out racing for the second time, Trish and Liz again struggled a little in the wind, but hopefully enjoyed the experience and will keep up their training for lots more races in the future.
MasEF 1x Steve L; lost to Nemesis in semi final by 5 lengths
Steve came up against a club he is familiar with of old, his Nemesis, and sadly couldn't repeat his success of the day before.
WMasDEF 1x Trish; beat City of Sheffield in semi final by 4 lengths, lost to Lea in final by 1 length
Trish had a great row in the semi for her first single scull race for ages (ever?). She had a close race in the final and didn't quite win, but should be really happy with the results.
Open 1x Band 3 Ian; lost to Leeds in heat
Up bright and early, Ian had a good race but couldn't beat the man from the north in the other lane.