Saturday saw Stratford upon Avon Boat Club compete at Worcester Rowing Club’s Autumn Regatta: despite a mostly wet day, all of the crews and supporters had a good event and Stratford showed its presence in small boat racing.
A scratch crew of Christine Goodwin and Lucy Rouse raced a technically competent women’s Novice 2x, never having rowed together before. Although they were beaten by tall Worcester seventeen year olds, Christine and Lucy proved their ability under race pressure and both showed their future promise. Their opposition went on to win the event.
Victoria Ward beat a very competent Nottingham University woman who raced in Gloucester colours in W.IM3.1x category. Victoria fought in the next heat against a tall Minerva Bath athlete, losing only to her opponent’s greater size. Said Victoria “They were both hard races and I was pleased I kept the pressure on the Gloucester athlete to cross the finish first”. Coach Helen Smith added, “Victoria continues to show her promise having had a few months of injury and we look forward to her continuing to develop her ability”.
Lucy Rouse competed in her first ever W.Nov.1x category race against the same Gloucester athlete who Victoria held off in the morning. Lucy showed how far she has come in less than a year of rowing, keeping her cool and maintaining good technique. Her opponent went on to win the event. Lucy’s coach Mark Dewdney said, “It was good to be there to see her put all the teaching in to action and I was very pleased with her efforts.”
The big successes of the day were Ed Lewry and Imogen North, ably racing against a quality crew from AB Severn in the Mx.Sen.2x category, taking Stratford over the finish easily. It was their last race together this season following their win at Ross Regatta a couple of weeks ago and the exciting final at Henley Town & Visitors’ Regatta a few weeks prior to that.
The crews were assisted by Dave and Lynne Rouse, great supporters of daughter Lucy and the Club and also Jen Carey who loaned her towing vehicle – without which no boat transport would have been available.
Back at Stratford, the Club was very busy during Sunday as the venue for the very successful Shakespeare Hospice Dragon Boat event raising money for running the Hospice.
For media coverage, see Stratford Herald page 16.