Hundreds of people lined the banks of the river Exe on Saturday to enjoy a day filled with competitive rowing. The City of Exeter rowing regatta is believed to be Exeter’s oldest sporting event. Held annually at Exeter Quay, the regatta is part of the West of England Amateur Rowing Association championship. This year the event saw a record number of entries with over 170 races taking place over the 400m course.
The first races of the day were the single sculls and Exeter were off to a flying start. The junior squad have been working hard all year and they didn’t disappoint. There were wins from Tallulah Bowyer, Poppy Bowyer, Anna Newton, Chad Allery and Andrey Kontyaev in the junior single sculls. The men also achieved fantastic results in this event. Ben Critchard who has been competing in the novice 1x secured his first win of the season. Neil Hitt achieved first place in the masters C 1x but he just missed out on the senior A title in a thrilling battle against Dan Wilmington who edged ahead to take the win. There were also a number of successful results in the double sculls with wins from Lula Bowyer & Phoebe Campbell (J14), Georgia Bonfield & Polly White (J15), Fin Copping & Joe Hickey (J13) and Danielle Wall & Megan Higgs (Novice).
The women’s squad were focusing their attention on the championship events. All of the women’s senior 4+ crews have been undefeated so far and they were not going to let this status slip on home water. In the novice 4+ Jane Stack, Susie Howells, Katie Campbell, Rebecca Kelly and Danielle Wall (cox) took a comfortable win. The senior B 4+ of Nic Walker, Ruth Fray, Michaela Bailey, Fern Dymond and Peter Cork (cox) had a close battle on their hands but managed to edge ahead to secure the win. Immediately after finishing the race the senior B crew climbed out of the boat and Kerri-Ann Upham, Kirsty Barker and Ellie Dodd joined Fern and Pete to row to the start of the Senior C 4+ race. With home crowd support the girls achieved another victory. All crews have been performing at a consistently high level and they are looking favourable for winning the overall WEARA championship.
After the championship events attention turned to the mixed crews competition. Exeter had entered scratch crews in a number of these events and competitive spirit was running high! First up was the mixed 8+ and the heat saw two Exeter crews go head to head. Each crew was made up of 4 women and 4 men, with bragging rights at stake there was everything to play for. When attention, go was called the crews took their first ever stroke together and battled down the course, at half way there wasn’t much separating the two boats but then with a stroke of luck the crew of Ben Critchard, Paul Minchell, David Ord, Brendan Corky, Jane Stack, Jenny Neal, Kirsty Barker, Rebecca Kelly and Emily Boother (cox) began to inch away to secure the victory! This crew later went on to win the final – a pretty jammy result for 9 people who hadn’t been put in a boat together before! There were also wins for our scratch crews in the mixed 4+ events with Katie Campbell, Mark Portnoi, James Rice and Fern Dymond winning Senior C and Hana Lango Allen, Kirsty Barker, Andrew Symmington, David Ord and Emily Boother (cox) winning senior A.
When the results were accounted for and verified it was announced that Exeter Rowing Club had secured the Victor Ludorum. The event was a huge success and enjoyed by rowers and spectators alike. On behalf of the whole club I would like to say a big thank-you to all our sponsors and to everyone that helped organise the event. The next race for the club is Falmouth regatta on Saturday.
Please see below for a full list of the Exeter winners:
M Masters C 1x
M Novice 1x
M Sen A 1x
Lula Bowyer, Phoebe Campbell
Georgia Bonfield, Polly White
W Novice 2x
Danielle Wall, Megan Higgs
Fin Copping, Joe Hickey
Mix Sen C 4+
Katie Campbell, Mark Portnoi, James Rice, Fern Dymond
Mix Sen A 4+
Hana Lango Allen, Kirsty Barker, Andrew Symmington, David Ord, Emily Boother (cox)
Mix Open 8+
Ben Critchard, Paul Minchell, David Ord, Brendan Corky, Jane Stack, Jenny Neal, Kirsty Barker, Rebecca Kelly, Emily Boother (cox)
Kate Doble, Evie Drew, Phoebe Campbell, Tallulah Bowyer, Danielle Stuart (cox)
Millie Roberts, Lauren May, Rachel Boyer, Megan Higgs
W Novice 4+
Jane Stack, Susie Howells, Katie Campbell, Rebecca Kelly, Danielle Wall (cox)
W Sen C 4+
Kerri-Ann Upham, Kirsty Barker, Ellie Dodd, Fern Dymond, Peter Cork (cox)
W Sen B 4+
Nic Walker, Ruth Fray, Michaela Bailey, Fern Dymond, Peter Cork (cox)
M Masters 4+
Ceri Green, Mike Boother, Dave Parsons, Keith Sutherland, Emily Boother (cox)
M Sen B 4+
Paul Minchell, Andrew Symmington, Jo Thorp, Dan Wilmington, Emily Boother (cox)
M Sen C 8+
Jonty Webber, Jo Thorp, David Ord, Paul Minchell, Harvey Stead, Ali Brown, Andrew Symington, Dan Wilmington, Emily Boother (cox)
By Kerri-Ann Upham