Stratford Rounds Off Season at Ross

Experiencing the Ross on Wye Sunday 550m Sprint course in the morning division for the first time, the J13 doubles of Seb Happel/Rory Rowan and Ed Appleton/ James Greenwood showed excellent steersmanship however the crews of City of Bristol and Queens Park High proved a tad too strong in the semi finals.

In the afternoon division, the WJ13 doubles of Maria Ntoukaki/Naomi Sime and Orla Linforth/Erin Appleton proved equally adept at steering the tricky course, but were narrowly beaten by a powerful Hereford double by half a length. Also in the afternoon, the same four J13 boys took to the quad and, expertly coxed by Rory Jones, took victory in the OJ13 4x+ event by 1.5L against Hereford Rowing Club. Commenting, Hugo Happel, J13 Coach said. Overall it was a brilliant day for the J13s, their last competition before they transition to J14, armed with even more learning and desire to develop and have fun!”

The traditional end of season event for Stratford upon Avon Boat Club arrived over the Bank Holiday weekend with thirty nine crews travelling to Ross Regatta. The event is considered a classic on the club racing calendar with two days of racing on the beautiful River Wye. The Sprint Regatta on Day One saw J13, J14, Masters and Adaptive athletes compete over the 550m course.

In the Masters G single sculls, Stratford’s Julian Foster took an early scalp with a solid win in the first round against Thames Tradesmen. Ross Regatta attracts competitors from far afield and in the final Stratford’s Foster lined up against the bronze medallist from the British Championships. Undeterred, Foster gave chase to the Star Club athlete but was unable to cause the much hoped for upset and finished second.

The Stratford’s J14 squad were out in force at Ross with entries across all categories in their age group. First to go were the single scullers entered in both Band One and Band Two events.  An all Stratford final was assured in Band Two as Tessa Parkin romped past Queens Park High School and Millie Smith recorded a narrow win against her squad mate Poppy Warren. The Band Two final did not disappoint with Tessa and Millie battling it out and Millie Smith the eventual winner. The Band One final was less dramatic and Stratford’s Sophie Franklin left the City of Bristol Sculler in her wake to record the win.

Next to go was the Stratford’s Sophie Franklin (coxswain) who executed a superb race to take the win against Queens Park High School. With the morning’s excitement barely receding, the afternoon racing got underway with the Stratford’s J14 girls coxed quadruple scull of Martha Cooke, Tessa Parkin, Millie Smith, Poppy Warren and Sophie Franklin (coxswain) took to the water to race against Liverpool Victoria in the boys event. Another great race saw the girls delight the crowd by chasing the boys hard down the course and just a quarter of a length margin put the Liverpool boys through to the next round. Finally, in the WJ14 double sculls event, Stratford fielded crews of Martha Baines/Isla Dunn and Josephine Cooper/Bryony Francis. The crews swept their competition aside in the semifinals to deliver another all Stratford final. Commenting, Steve Wellstead, J14 Coach and Junior Coordinator, said. “And what a final! The two crews passed the assembled crowd bow ball to bow ball, the Wye boiling with heat of competition! In the final analysis, some classy steering from Dunn saw the Dunn/Baines combination take the win and round off a pot-tastic day for the squad! 

First on the water were the open J15 doubles: despite having issues with their start, the double of Seth Vondrak and Xavier Sissins-Roffey managed to close the initial gap between them and their opposition from Queens Park High, missing out on a place in the final by only a metre to the eventual winners of the event. Also competing in this event, the double of Oliver Rowlands and James Albrighton comfortably won their semi final but unfortunately lost in their final against Queens Park High.

Competing in the junior 15 women’s coxed quad was the quad of Lily Warren, Poppy Baines, Sophie Evans and Alice Jones, cox Lucy Yang, who in a close race against yet another Queens Park High crew, unfortunately lost by less than a boat length. In the junior 15 women’s singles event, Alexandra Francis raced against a strong sculler from A B Severn and after establishing a lead relatively early on, went on to win the event.

In the afternoon, the doubles of Alice Jones and Lily Warren and Sophie Evans and Poppy Baines competed in the women’s J15 double sculls. Jones and Warren raced well in their heat but unfortunately were beaten by a double from Queens Park High. The double of Evans and Baines won their heat by a comfortable margin but in their semi final against an Evesham double, lost out by a small margin after some very close racing.

In the open junior 15 singles Xavier Sissins-Roffey raced a very experienced sculler from Black Sheep Rowing Club and despite being very close for the majority of the race, unfortunately clipped a buoy before the finish line allowing his opposition to pull away and take the win. In the open J15 coxed quads, the quad of James Albrighton, Oliver Rowlands, Seth Vondrak and Alexandra Francis, coxed by Lucy Yang, raced a quad from Queens Park High and quickly established a considerable lead over their opposition, winning the event by five lengths.

The J16’s were represented in the Sunday sprint event by Jess Long, Harriet Froom and Will Dalrymple-Baker in the single sculls along with Aimee Appleton and Lucy Sartain in the double sculls event. Both Jess and Harriet put on great displays of sculling and stayed in contention through to the finish, but were unable to overhaul their opponents despite big efforts from both girls.

Dalrymple-Baker faced a familiar opponent from Evesham in his semi final and having never beaten him was determined to ring in the changes. Quick off the start and gaining the advantage, Dalrymple-Baker maintained a high stroke rate and held off the advancing Evesham sculler to secure a place in the final by two feet. Despite the gargantuan efforts of the semi final, Dalrymple-Baker picked himself up to face an even bigger opponent from Monmouth but despite deploying the same race strategy, narrowly missed out on the win by just two feet.

The afternoon division saw the Appleton/Sartain double square up against Staines in a semi final. Rounding the bend the girls were just over a length down and sculling well together before the Staines crew used their physical advantage to push on and counter the attack from the Stratford girls, denying them a place in the final.

On Monday Jess Long and Harriet Froom came together in the double sculls event on the longer regatta course. Facing local rivals Evesham in the semi-final, the girls displayed the same levels of determination from their singles event the previous day to take a convincing win and secure a place in the final against Liverpool Victoria. Feeling buoyed by their win the girls put in another gutsy performance but ultimately the Liverpool crew were too strong and took the win.

Amélie and Lucy Sartain were first up on Sunday, racing in the senior women’s doubles event. They sculled strongly despite minimal practice but fell to a close defeat in their first round. Freya Watts was next on the course in the WJ18 singles event, and rowed a brilliant race to come home just short of a win against a previous National Champion from Evesham. The OJ18 double of Charles Happel and Toby Sartain then took on a straight final against a crew from Evesham Rowing Club in what would be their last of many races as a pairing this season and they cruised home to take the win by a margin of four lengths.

Next up was the WJ18 coxed four of Kate Richardson, Maddie Hall, Uchenna Nwachukwu, Harriet Noyes and cox Imogen Hill. Despite proficient rowing. they were unfortunate to fall short to a crew from Black Sheep Rowing Club in their first round. Will Beattie followed in the senior men’s singles category and, after taking a superb win in his first round by four lengths to a sculler from Liverpool Victoria, he then fell to an extremely close loss in the final by only one quarter of a boat length. Beattie was soon to race again though, this time alongside Toby and Amélie Sartain and Freya Watts in the senior mixed quads event. In another straight final against a crew from Queen’s Park High School, the four scullers put in an immense performance with no prior training in the boat to turn the race around in the last one hundred metres, coming from behind to take an unexpected and special win. Finally, Charles Happel took to the water one last time in the J18 singles event, and rounded off a victorious day for the squad with an effortless win in his final. J18 Coach Abi Terry commented. “As the final race for the J18’s as juniors, it was a great way to end the season!”

Stratford J16s and J17s also combined forces to enter an VIII in the Senior Women’s event. Megan Rowan, Aimee Appleton, Ez Elmwood, V, Harriet Noyes, Maddie Hall, Uche Nwachukwa, Kate Richardson and coxswain Imogen Hill drew a strong crew from Warwick in the semi-final but displayed better technique and soon pulled out a convincing lead to progress to the final. Despite a quality row and holding a high rate for the entire 750 metre course, Stratford could not hang on to a very experienced and powerful composite crew from Black Sheep Rowing Club in the final. J16 Coach Sam Hill said, “The girls have put in a superb performance, punching way above their weight with very little time training together: so it bodes well for next season when they ‘graduate’ to J17/18’s this September.”

Ross Rowing Club has recently started a Mixed Ability section which follows Stratford Boat Club’s example: Mixed Ability seeks to integrate adaptive rowers with able bodied club members. A Mixed Ability event took place at Ross Regatta between ladies’ doubles from each club with Stratford’s more experience crew of adaptive athlete Gillian Middleton and buddy rower Jackie Joesbury winning the day by four lengths.

For media coverage, see Stratford Observer online https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/sport/rowing-boat-club-round-off-season-at-ross

2022 President’s Sculls Trophies Awarded!

… and finally! Stratford upon Avon Boat Club finally awarded The President’s Sculls 2022 trophies for the best sculler in the men’s and adaptive category this last month, The race off for the award for the best sculler in the Club’s junior squad is still to be completed

The original trophy was initially presented by Ian Cartwright, the then Captain, to Derek Eardley in 2004 during his tenure as President of Stratford Boat Club to mark his many years of service to the Club and was to be raced for annually in coxed fours

Over the years, the competition faded from the annual calendar and was reinstated comparatively recently as an annual sculling competition in four categories – women, men, juniors and adaptive

Paul Stanton, Stratford upon Avon Boat Club President commented, “We hope that the President’s Sculls award will inspire all members to continue with sculling at a high level and further contribute to all sections of the Club mixing and communicating with each other”

The award for the men’s trophy went to Jake Blatcher who dominated the men’s races and was awarded by Dr Persephone Wynn, Programme Manager for the Level 3 Senior Club Coaching Award and Level 2 Strength & Conditioning programme at British Rowing. The awards for the adaptive squad went to Gillian Middleton and Rona Fitzpatrick for the best pair; Rob Pedley for the most improved sculler in a single and to Isaac Courtland for the most promising sculler in a single

For media coverage, see Stratford Herald page forty three and Stratford Observer online https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/sport/rowing-boat-club-awards-presidents-sculls-trophies

No Slacking for Stratford in the City of Dreaming Spires!

Stratford upon Avon Boat Club started the weekend on Saturday travelling the comparatively short way to Oxford to compete in the Oxford City Royal Regatta hosted by City of Oxford Rowing Cub: the regatta has been running consistently on the Isis River in Oxford since 1841 with only occasional breaks due to war.

Stratford’s WJ17/18 athletes Martha Usselmann and Hannah Broome in the Women’s Double Sculls event had a close race off the start against City of Cambridge who then pulled away and beat Stratford to the final. Said Helen Smith, J17/18 Coach, “Martha and Hannah were happy with their race, as they hadn’t previously raced a double together and kept a strong effort against the more experienced crew.”

On Sunday, Stratford upon Avon Boat Club’s adaptive squad followed up its recent highly successful trip to Maidenhead with another day of great results at the Oxford Sprint Regatta. The crews competed in four events on the day and won them all!

All the singles races took place in the morning: adaptive athlete Lee Cairns competed in two events for wheelchair users. His first final was against his club mate Rob Pedley: Rob’s larger physique and somewhat better technique on this occasion took the honours with Rob winning by three lengths over his plucky rival.

Lee’s second event saw him race Luke Payne from Sudbury in the final. The pair had had an epic encounter at Marlow earlier in the summer with Lee beating Luke by half a length. This latest meeting reflected Lee’s fast development over the last few months with Lee leading from start, finishing with a comfortable win over his opponent from Suffolk.

In the afternoon, the adaptive pairs final was another all Stratford affair between Gillian Middleton and Dan Godefroy with Gillian and her support rower overcoming Dan and his support rower Joe Moore by about a length. Gillian’s ‘never say die’ attitude perhaps proving the critical factor in this well matched struggle!

This left Ian Ward and his mother Paola to try to complete the clean sweep against another mixed crew from Marlow in the final of the adaptive doubles. The race proved close but the Stratford family crew kept their nose in front most of the way and better steering in the latter half of the race gave them a win by a couple of lengths.

Head Adaptive Coach Mark Dewdney commented, “This regatta looks like the end of the season for us: sadly no one wants to race us at the Bank Holiday weekend Gloucester Regatta! That is disappointing but we are going out on a high! Stratford’s adaptive section have been invited to compete in Italy in October so we have plenty to look forward to! As always, a big thank you to the adaptive support crew, helpers and buddy rowers from other clubs: we were also honoured to have our President Paul Stanton and Vice President Colin Upchurch visit and support us during the regatta: their encouragement means a lot!”

For media coverage see Stratford Herald online https://www.stratford-herald.com/sport/sprint-regatta-glory-for-adaptive-athletes-9270535 and page fifty one and Stratford Observer online https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/sport/rowing-stratfords-adaptive-squad-continue-fine-season-with-clean-sweep-at-oxford-sprint-regatta and back sports page https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/editions/view/?/Stratford/2022/08/26&pages=024

Stratford’s Adaptives Prove Themselves at Maidenhead!

Stratford upon Avon Boat Club’s adaptive squad took the long journey to Maidenhead to compete at their regatta on Saturday. Five clubs entered eight different events for the disabled. The other clubs won one each. Stratford won the other four; four of the five adaptive events they competed in.

Jake Blatcher also attended and raced in both his single and as well as a support rower with some of his adaptive colleagues. In Jake’s first race, his opponent from Reading University took an early lead. However, Jake closed the gap consistently and his opponent, feeling the pressure, started to make mistakes and as Jake came alongside, the Reading man made a fatal mistake resulting in his capsize and defeat! Jake’s second race was against a large sculler from Ardingly: this was an epic encounter that Jake lost by just a quarter of length!

First up from the adaptive squad was Andy Morris racing Watson from Oxford in his singles’ final. The Oxford sculler was given a twenty second head start: Andy succeeded in clawing this back by halfway down the course eventually winning by a comfortable four lengths.

Rob Pedley then took on a sculler from Lagan (Belfast) in his final: this was Rob’s first event. The competitor from Northern Ireland was also given a twenty second head start. It was only in the last one hundred metres that Rob poked his nose in front, winning by a few lengths as his opponent faded.

The next event turned out to be an all Stratford final as new boy Dan Browne took on the more experienced Gillian Middleton in Mixed Ability Doubles/Pairs. Dan was given a head start which he and his steerer, Joe Moore, never relinquished: this was Dan’s first win after a few tries.

The final win for Stratford Boat Club came in another Mixed Ability Doubles/Pairs event. The final was between a Lagan and Maidenhead combined crew and Dan Godefroy and Jake Blatcher from Stratford. This was an exercise in better technique overcoming a lot of effort. Rowing smoothly down the whole course, the result looked inevitable well before the finish, Dan and Jake drawing applause from the crowd for what looked like effortless rowing.

Rob Pedley kindly agreed to race Akhurst from Marlow who otherwise would not have had an opponent: this was a tremendous race with the experience and technique of Marlow against the brawn of the Stratford man. As with the previous final, technique came out on top with Akhurst winning by a few lengths.

Commenting on the day, Stratford Boat Club’s Head Adaptive Coach Mark Dewdney said, “We are pretty happy with the outcome. It has been a while since our last event and I was concerned we would be a bit rusty. We are off to Oxford Regatta in a fortnight and hope for similar results!”

For media coverage, please see Stratford Observer online https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/sport/rowing-stratfords-adaptive-squad-dominate-at-maidenhead and back sports page https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/editions/view/?/Stratford/2022/08/12&pages=024 and also Stratford Herald online https://www.stratford-herald.com/sport/adaptive-squad-show-their-class-9267932 and page forty five.

Stratford’s Adaptives and Masters Make A Splash at Gloucester!

Starting the morning at Gloucester Rowing Club’s Spring Head, Stratford upon Avon Boat Club’s Adaptive Squad its first outing at the season. On a 1750 metre course, the Stratford Boat Club swept the adaptive board winning both the singles and doubles/pairs events.

Andy Morris competing in his first event for the Club covered the course in a few seconds under ten minutes. Bennett from Stourport was second about twenty seconds behind. Holliday from Gloucester came in third.

The doubles/pairs events were a 1-2-3 for Stratford Boat Club’s Adaptive Squad. All the Club’s crews finished in between ten and eleven minutes. After time adjustments to compensate for varying levels of disability, the winners were Gillian Middleton with her support rower Rona Fitzpatrick. Ian Ward and his mother Paola finished second. Hattie Throssell and rowing partner Joe Moore were third. Jake Blatcher also had a good row in his single but suffered from cramp during the last kilometre of his 5000 metre race which sadly ruined his chances of success.

The Adaptive Squad now forms part of a new initiative at Stratford Boat Club – The Stratford Mixed Ability Rowing Team. This aims to integrate the adaptive squad with able-bodied people learning to row and the Club’s day time recreational groups. The Club is introducing this change slowly so that the best result is achieved for all concerned. The Adaptive Squad’s next event is a time trial at Henley-on-Thames on 3rd April.

Saturday morning at Gloucester Rowing Club’s Spring Head also saw a composite Stratford/Gloucester crew comprising Gary Clay and Kjersti Rogneflaten (representing Gloucester but also a Stratford member), racing as Masters F Mixed Double Scull event: they were up against stiff opposition from Upton and two Warwick crews from the start. With a strong head wind, the double settled into a strong rhythm and managed to overtake four women double scull crews who had set of ahead of them. The double then negotiated the tricky course and finished strongly to win by four seconds from Upton (the Scriveners, who joined forces with Stratford in the afternoon division).

Another Stratford upon Avon Boat Club Masters’ squad continued their competition in the 5km afternoon division of Gloucester Rowing Club Spring Head with Heather Hayton and Tom Doherty rowing with their Upton friends Tabatha and Julian Scrivenor in the mixed Masters’ fours event.

With a field of five crews of varying age groups from average age of under 30 up to 60, the race was always going to be keenly contested. The Stratford/Upton crew with an average age 55 to 60, lead off closely followed by Bristol Ariel average age 35 to 40.

The Ariel crew put immediate pressure on the Stratford/Upton crew who refused to give in and dug deep to keep Ariel behind them down the course. With tricky head wind conditions, Ariel were only able to close slowly with Stratford/Upton managing to keep them behind until the three kilometre mark, well over half way down the course.

At the approach to a narrow bridge, a well known feature of the course, Ariel managed to sneak past and establish a lead of less than a length going into the last 1.7km.

The Stratford/Upton crew continued to dig deep and hang on to Ariel knowing that a close finish would guarantee them a win on the races age group handicap system. Although Ariel pulled out to about a twenty second lead at the finish, it was not enough as Stratford/Upton were able to come home in second place with a significantly close overall time to take the race win.

Sadly, Stratford’s Junior Squad and King Edward The Sixth Boat Club had to make the best of the water on the Avon at Stratford as their West Midlands Rowing Championships at Stourport were cancelled as the River Severn was not viable for rowing.

For media coverage, see  page fifty two and Stratford Observer online https://www.stratfordobserver.co.uk/sport/rowing-stratford-upon-avon-boat-clubs-adaptive-squad-clean-up-at-gloucester-rowing-clubs-spring-head

For more great pictures of Gloucester Rowing Club’s Spring Head, see Matt Jones Photography’s selection at https://mattjonesphotography.photoshelter.com/gallery-collection/Gloucester-Spring-Head-2022/C0000DPSByeOde9o

Stratford’s Adaptive Squad Show Promise at Oxford and Juniors Finish 2020 Competition!

Stratford upon Avon Boat Club’s adaptive (disabled) squad raced at Oxford on the weekend. Building on recent success, they won five events and came extremely close to winning a couple more.

The Oxford City Rowing Club regatta was solely for disabled rowers with the usual two day regatta being cancelled for Covid reasons.

Pride of place goes to Kelly Donald in the wheelchair user women’s single sculls event. Competing in her first event, she beat a plucky and experienced City of Oxford sculler in the final by a little over a length.

James Bastin’s win in beating his Stratford colleague Gillian Middleton in the final of a doubles event was also a first win in his first event. A great performance from the visually and physically impaired athlete. Gillian competed in two events and a win for her must surely be just around the corner.

Xander van der Poll, a Stratford Great Britain Paralympic hopeful, won a very close final against another Oxford opponent. Further wins were completed by Ian Ward supported by his sister Sofia and Hattie Throssell with Paola Ward.

The unluckiest pair of the day were Jake Blatcher and Dan Godefroy. Competing in two events, they lost the finals by just a foot in each case. Steve Binns, in his fifties, had a tough draw against a much younger Guildford opponent.

The squad’s next outing is at Stratford Boat Club’s own regatta on Saturday 18th September.

Not to be out done, Stratford Boat Club’s Junior Squad was in action over the weekend finalising the concluding junior heats of the 2020 President’s Sculls. Yes, 2020 President’s Sculls, just over a year after the first races and very much in the style of Tokyo Olympics affected by Covid restrictions and disruptions!

Some close racing was delivered by Freya Watts as this year’s junior champion who won by one length in the final.

Said Steve Wellstead, Junior Co-ordinator and J17/18 Performance Squad Coach, “Well done to all entrants: we’ll be having the trophy presentation soon!”

The original trophy was initially presented by Ian Cartwright, the then Captain, to Derek Eardley in 2004 during his tenure as President of Stratford Boat Club to mark his many years of service to the Club and was to be raced for annually in coxed fours.

Over the years, the competition faded from the annual calendar and was reinstated comparatively recently as an annual sculling competition in three categories – women, men and juniors.

Paul Stanton, Stratford upon Avon Boat Club President commented, “We hope that the President’s Sculls award will continue to inspire all members to continue with sculling at a high level and further contribute to all sections of the Club mixing and communicating with each other. Our congratulations go to Freya Watts who has won the Junior Award. Our thanks go to all those who supervised this final by marshalling and safety spotting on the bank and from the launch.”

For media coverage, see Stratford Herald page fifty five

Stratford’s Masters’, Adaptive & Junior Squads Competing at High Level!

The Junior and Masters squads of Stratford upon Avon Boat Club were in action again over the weekend on the hallowed waters of Henley-on-Thames.  As the trailer rolled into the historic town, the conditions could not have been better and gave no indication of what lay ahead.

Henley Town and Visitors Regatta provided high quality side by side racing over 800m on the Henley Royal Regatta course. Warm up complete, the Masters’ double scull of Henley Town and Visitors Regatta took to the water and made short work of their Guildford Rowing Cub competition in the first round. Steeling themselves for the final, the Hayton/Doherty combo turned swiftly and lined up against a quality crew from Poole & Warwick clubs. Sadly, victory was denied by a tight margin with the Poole/Warwick composite taking the win.

Then, it rained: with a biblical downpour in full effect the WJ18 quadruple scull of Jasmine Mountney, Isabelle Watts, Alice Baines and Mili Wilcock fully expected Noah and his Ark to be competing! Rowing up in the Senior Women’s event, the Stratford Boat Club athletes were drawn against what can only be described as a rowing super group consisting of Irish and Estonian national team members.

Unfazed, the J18 Stratford crew took their place on the start. The flag dropped and the girls went off well and held the Twickenham Rowing Club/ Thames Rowing Club/ Neptune Rowing Club composite to no more than half a length for the first half of the race. Experience won out in the end however and the composite took the win and went on to win the event overall. Commenting, Steve Wellstead, Junior Co-ordinator and J18 Performance Squad Coach commented, “That’s racing and indeed, the luck of the draw: onwards and upwards to Stourport Boat Club Regatta next Saturday!”

The Stratford Boat Club’s every increasing adaptive (disabled) squad competed at Maidenhead Rowing Club Regatta on Saturday. Xander Van Der Poll won his debut event in his single: in the final, he defeated a sculler from Northern Ireland by a considerable margin. Xander, a former King Edward The Sixth School pupil, is in the Great Britain Paralympic pathway system and hopes to represent Great Britain in the Paris Paralympics in 2024. He is one of two such athletes being developed by the Club’s adaptive section and can be seen on the Avon early most mornings training when not at Bristol University studying for his medical degree.

Gillian Middleton also made her first competitive appearance after only a few months rowing and an impressive one it was: she and her crewmate Joe Moore were only overhauled by a strong Marlow crew in the last few strokes of the final.

Paola and Ian Ward, in their final, were similarly overtaken close to the finish line by an all male Guildford crew. Dan Godefroy and Jake Blatcher were beaten by a technically excellent City of Oxford crew.

Said Mark Dewdney, Stratford Boat Club’s Head Adaptive Coach said, “Due to many last minute changes, some Stratford rowers were put in races against much faster opposition: on this occasion, this reduced our chances of multiple wins that we have had in most regattas in the last few years. Nonetheless, well done to all the rowers and helpers! We were very pleased with the general level of performance. Xander will face tougher opposition in the future so his training and steps along the GB Paralympic pathway will continue in earnest: Gillian’s performance was the star of the day! Stratford’s adaptive section is interested in everyone rowing as well as they can and we are happy as long as everyone rows well. The squad’s next outing is at Oxford on the 21st August in an event just for adaptive/disabled rowers.”

For media coverage see Stratford Herald online https://www.stratford-herald.com/sport/squads-show-they-can-compete-with-the-best-9211185 and page fifty.

For more great pictures of Henley Town & Visitors Regatta, see Kathy Baines’ selection at https://1drv.ms/f/s!AgY7EiDB2lCOhMdRfeSXA-kVvsp4wA