It’s been a busy couple of months since our last race. The first term was rounded off with the annual Christmas training camp held at the National Water Sports Centre, before students headed home for the holidays to bed in some land training alone and focus on studies. Returning in the New Year athletes picked up with their revision and training as crews began work towards the upcoming races.
Kicking off the events we've had the 3rd round of GB assessment for our trialists Harry Nichols, George Crouchley, Lucy Gillbanks, and Imogen North. This round consisted of just a 5km water time trial in their singles in Boston, the weather recently and on the day has presented challenges to rowers up and down the country, and our athletes fared well on the day to pull out some impressive results.
In the Men's lightweight trials George and Harry had good rows despite the very testing conditions. The first 2k of the course was slightly sheltered from the strong head wind, before it swung round into a direct head wind for the final 3k.
George had a great row with a very strong second half of the course, despite the tough conditions, to make good progress against other competitor times. His finish position placed him 11th in the under 23s and 8th in the under 20s.
George has benefited from the training done since 1st Assessment in October, beating athletes who were ranked high at that assessment.
This is a very promising result for George in his first year as a Senior Trialist. If he continues with his current progress, next year's trials process could see George making it through to final trials.
Harry had an exceptionally strong row down the whole course, taking advantage of experience gained during training in coping with tough conditions. His finish position placed him 2nd in the under 23s, second in the under 20s and 7th overall. This is a great result after having to miss 1st Assessment.
Harry's pathway to GB U23 representation will hopefully be improved now with the prospect of an invitation to a GB training camp at Caversham prior to final trials.
In the Women's lightweight trials, Lucy started at
number 78, with Imogen at 79, both girls determined to convert the
improvement in technique and fitness built over the previous months into
impressive results, they did not disappoint! Both girls set off hard, executing
their race plans over the first 2k of the course, racing into a slightly
sheltered cross head up to the bend, coming around the bend into a direct head
wind, which layered down tough conditions for girls weighing under 60KG.
Despite the conditions, after the bend with the sleet now turning to rain, both our girls were moving up in the rankings from last year’s finishing positions, with Imogen taking a small 3 second lead over Lucy at half way.
The long Boston straight was taking its toll on many of the lightweight girls as they raced over the second half of the course, both Lucy and Imogen maintained their power and technique over the second half, holding in their finishes crossing the finishing line with just 13 seconds separating them. Imogen finishing in a time of 21:48 and Lucy close behind in a time of 22:01. This equated to the following results in the Lwt women , Imogen finishing 11th overall, and 3rd in her category of U23. Lucy finished in 14th place overall and 6th in her category of U23. A truly superb performance by our girls, these results should advance both Imogen and Lucy to the next stage in the Gb trial process with an invitation to the training camp at Caversham prior to final trials.
We now move on as a club to BUCS 4s and 8s Head on the weekend of 24th/25th February, taking our novices and seniors to Newcastle for the first major competition of the season. The results so far are illustrating the hard work and dedication being put in by the athletes and coaching team, starting off 2018 with the best collective performance at trials for our lightweights in over 10 years we should all be excited for the coming events. There is potential for a great set of results in the next few months of heads and regattas.