SHANKLIN COMPETE AT UNIQUE CHRISTCHURCH REGATTA

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Shanklin Sandown Rowing Club headed to the 2-lane Dorset-based Christchurch Regatta at the weekend with high hopes for its 2 entries. 

The regatta is unique on the Hants and Dorset circuit, as it works in a head to head knockout format on the bending course set up on the River Stour.

The first boat heading on to the water for the club was the Men’s Junior Four as they faced Itchen Imperial B. The crew of Joe Robertson, Jamie Gamble, Matt Miselbach, Harry Miselbach and cox Ethan Walters had a ferocious start to their race and quickly put distance between them and their opponents. A clean turn and strong row back saw the crew extend their lead throughout the race to qualify comfortably for the quarter final.

Next on to the water was the Ladies Junior Four. The crew set up a different format to one that has raced in previous weeks, with Emily Faithfull, Sophie Atkin, Emily Andre, Daisy Faithfull and cox Ethan Walters lining up on the stake boats to face home crew Christchurch B. A clean start saw the crew take a small early lead. Extending their lead towards the turn and with a good row back they too qualified for the next round.

The Men’s crew was then back out on to the water to face the opponents they’d been narrowly defeated by at Itchen 2 weeks earlier – Bournemouth. The boys had another strong start and were neck and neck with Bournemouth in to the turns. With the great turn from the Dorset-based club, Shanklin fell half a length behind. Chasing the Bournemouth crew on the return leg the Shanklin crew dug deep and raced to the line but could no overturn the deficit and were knocked out by just over a length.

The Ladies Junior Four then faced Lymington in their semi final. Starting cleanly once more the girls found a strong rhythm early in the race to take an early lengths lead. As they headed towards the turn they had further extended their lead to just under two lengths. With another good turn from Ethan Walters their lead was not eaten into at the turn and they returned back up the course equally well to qualify for their final.

In the final, the girls faced fellow Islanders and championship leaders, Ryde. Despite yet another good start, the Ryde crews strength was showing early on as they lead off the start. As both crews headed for the turns it was the Ryde boat enjoying a strong race having taken three lengths out of Shanklin by the turn. As both crews headed back down the course for the finish the Shanklin crew gave it their all, but it wasn’t enough to challenge Rydes championship leaders as they took a convincing victory and showed why they’re the crew to beat this season.

Ethan Walters also raced on the day in a composite J16 boys crew with Lymington. Despite the crew looking excellent throughout their row, the older and stronger Itchen crew they faced were a little too fast for them on the day as they were knocked out.

The next regatta will take place in 2 weeks time at Swanage.

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