So, I have been busy of late and have not written a proper regatta report for some time, so here it is, please enjoy it.
We headed off to Throsby Creek for the Central Districts Rowing Association Sprint Championships. The highlight of the day was the Throsby GIFT relay, which I will go into more detail about later, but there were also plenty of other races to look forward. It was set to be a windy day, but fortunately all the racing went ahead, and the squad of fifteen Nepean rowers performed admirably.
Four hundred metre racing is much faster and in turn, sometimes more unpredictable compared to standard one thousand and two thousand metre racing. This makes for exciting racing and a good spectacle for onlookers.
Highlights in the singles included Jason taking out both the masters and open categories. Miles taking out the under 19 race and Hugh the under 16 and C grade events. Aimee placed second in the under 17 singles while Edee placed third, and Sarah also placed third in the under 16 event. Annelise took second in the open category. Alliah and Cleo also took out their respective divisions in the D grade racing.
Doubles racing saw the high rating duo (so they tell me) of Tallara, and Jacqui take out the open double. Miles and Hugh came second in the under 19 double after qualifying in a tight heat race and leaving their row up to the start for the final to slightly later than some would say was ideal. Jason teamed up with Conrad from Newcastle University and took out the master’s race. Alliah and Sarah also won their D grade division.
The big boats, saw some newly formed combinations, as is often the case for us. The open quad of Annelise, Jacqui, Cleo, and Sarah made it through a tough heat to qualify for the final. The final was another tight race, and while the Newcastle University composite crew and Nepean quads had some rough strokes it was the Newcastle University composite that went away with the slim victory. The open coxed four of Jason, Joel, Daniel, Miles and Alex got away cleanly and went away with the win despite bow’s less than desirable sweep technique and three seats lack of training (two was, of course, perfect and stroke almost so, but that is in a big part due to his great coach).
The highly anticipated relay race was once again upon us. For those that are unfamiliar with the event, it consists of a mixed double, mixed coxed four, and a mixed quad. The race is over 400 metres and each crew lines up behind each other. When the first crew crosses the line, a flag is waved that, in turn, signals to the next crew to begin racing.
We have won the event for two consecutive years, and we went to the event this year with the hope of being the first club in the history of the event, which began back in 2001 to win it for three consecutive years. This year’s crew would have been the fast we have boated to date, but we were not comfortable with resting on this, and we knew that there would be strong competition to overcome to claim the trophy for a third consecutive year.
The heat saw us draw the strong Newcastle University and Newcastle Grammar crews. Jason and Annelise got out well and claimed a lead for the four to start with, which they capitalized on and continued to gain a bigger lead for the final leg of the quad. The big strong quad (well some of them at least) of Hugh, Daniel, Edee, and Aimee held onto the lead as Newcastle University began gaining on them, but enough of a lead was established that we were ensured a spot in the final.
The final saw us face-off with Newcastle Rowing Club. We headed into the final knowing that we would need to work for it if we wanted to take out the win. The double caught a crab early on, which was less than ideal, but they recovered and were still able to hand the four a lead for their leg. The four were able to hold this lead (rumours are that stroke seat was quite tired by this stage of racing), and it was then left to the quad to close out the race. The quad caught a crab (I cannot recall who caught the crab, that or I am suppressing the memory, so we will say it was the crew) early on, but they recovered well and went on with the job at hand, and crossed the line first.
I want to say a big thank you to the CDRA and Newcastle Rowing Club for being so welcoming and hosting such an enjoyable event. This event along with the Berry park regattas are always a joy to be a part of and is something we as a club will continue to attend due to the great atmosphere and competition provided.
I know one person has missed these reports as I have not been able to praise his continued efforts that never go unnoticed by myself or anyone who is involved with the club. Thank you, Mark, for everything you did to make the day possible and everything else, I know you will thank me for the mention. I say it often, but again it was great to see everyone chipping in pre, post, and during the event. From loading the trailer through to packing up on the day and everything else that is involved, I was delighted to see everyone help wherever required.