Members of Shanklin Sandown Rowing Club found themselves waking up at 07:00 rather than boarding a ferry at that time as the club made the short journey to Newport Rowing Club, as they hosted their Fours-only regatta on the River Medina at the weekend.
The first event of the day for the club saw the Ladies Junior Four rowing up to the start for their heat. Lining up against crews from Itchen and Christchurch were Mia Phelan, Lisa Robertson, Anja Bennett, Stella Gamble – and cox Alex Robertson. The crew had a clean start but couldn’t contend with the speed of the their opposition off the line. After finding a rhythm the ladies began to move with the 2 leading crews throughout the middle of the race and although coming into the finish several lengths behind Itchen and Christchurch had an excellent row and are constantly improving their performances.
Next onto the water was the Men’s Junior Four. Facing the same crew that they had lost to a week prior in the shape of BTC, Joe Robertson, Jamie Gamble, Harry Miselbach, Matt Miselbach – and cox Ethan Walters – knew they had a tough task ahead of them if they wanted to qualify for their final. Sure enough, despite an excellent start seeing the Shanklin crew take an early lead, BTC were leading the race at the half way point by half a boat length. However, with calmness and strength the Shanklin crew slowly rowed back through the Southampton based club and eventually crossed the line with a 2 length victory.
The boys’ final would be the club’s next race on the River Medina as they faced both Itchen A and B. Another powerful start from the Shanklin crew had the boys in blue once again challenging for the lead of a Mens Junior Fours final. As the race reached its half way point however Itchen were once again moving out against the Shanklin boat to take a lengths lead. This was extended to 2 lengths by the finish and Shanklin had to settle for second.
The next 2 Shanklin rowers on the water were Paul Gamble and Gary Burch, racing in a composite Masters 40 boat with Matt Chalmers, Kev Bennett and cox Jonjo Finlay of the home club, Newport. Facing the Masters 40 champions of the last 3 seasons in Itchen Imperial in a straight final, the crew faced a tough task. Despite this the Four had an excellent race and came home only a few lengths behind the crew from Southampton.
The final event would give the club their best result of the day. The Ladies J16 quadruple scull featuring Rachael Debenham, Mia Phelan, Sophie Atkin, Emily Faithfull – and cox Ethan Walters – faced a head to head bout with the home club. The race was close off the start and moving towards the half way stage it was looking neck and neck. The Shanklin crew found an extra gear in the second 500 metres however and to the delight of the onlooking supporters came home with a 2 length victory in the final race of the day.