Appledore & Instow Rowing Review

There was a somewhat disappointing turnout at the 6th West of England Championship Regatta of the season that was held at Appledore and Instow last Sunday, with a number of clubs deciding not to enter any crews and many others just sending a small number of rowers to compete in races where they are still in contention for championship honours, writes David Godfrey. 


Bideford Reds enjoyed their most successful day of the season  when they finished as the top club with the most points from the days racing.  The Reds picked up a total of 27 points from their six first places, two seconds and five third places which was two  points ahead of the second placed club from Plymouth.


The tone for the day was set in the very first race when two men’s Senior B crews from the Reds battled neck and neck down the course – with the ‘A’ crew off Ross Bennett, Alex Rowland, Adam Bewes and Adam Curtis crossing the line first and in the process enabled the four to open up a four point lead in the championship with only four regattas remaining.


At Senior C level the two leading crews from Castledore and Bideford Reds had to settle  for the minor places, when the Torquay combination of Stuart Williams, John Murray, Michael Todd and Aaron Hunt scored a convincing win to pick up their first points of the year.


With no entries at either the ladies Senior A or B races, most attention was centred on the Senior C race where the young Dart Totnes four of Heather Swiss, Lucy Romney, Molly Mifsud and Emilia Collinson finished ahead of Bideford Blues and Plymouth.


Also enhancing their championship credentials was the Ladies Junior 14 quad of Hazel Fowler, Tilly Tucker, Nell Davies and Cassie Skene-Smith who won their fifth race in six starts to open up  a seven point lead ahead of second place Dart Totnes who in turn are three points clear of third place Exeter as did the  Blues men’s Junior 14 four of Harrison Beer, Sophie Evans, Jamie Milsom and Barney Evans in their race.


Nancy Coombe, Lana Sharam, Ellie Langman and Nadine Smith from Dartmouth were the winners of the ladies Junior 16 race ahead of crews from the Blues and Reds and in the process opened up a 5 point lead ahead of Exeter who did not race.


The organisers of the rearranged Falmouth Regatta has confirmed that inevitably entries are down but we are pleased to be able to hold a full Championship Regatta again next Sunday, weather permitting!


There is no Men’s Senior A4+ but there will be a Women’s Senior A4+ race between the two Cornish clubs from Castledore and Falmouth.


The two clubs will also race each other in the women’s open eight but will join forces to race the mixed masters eight against Totnes.


Sarah Lewis who is the Event Secretary confirmed that ‘racing will start at 11-00 and finish just before 4-00 pm. There will be men’s Senior B and Senior C fours races along with a women’s Senior C four.’


The event has been hurriedly rescheduled following the cancellation of the regatta two weeks ago due to the strong winds and heavy rain.  The event will be held at Stithians Lake near Redruth on the 19th and it has also been confirmed that the event will have full championship status so points will be awarded for all main fours and single sculling races.


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