South Coast Championships and Open Regatta
The youth and junior section of Christchurch Rowing Club showed that the future is bright for the club after a successful weekend at the 59th South Coast Rowing Championships and Open Regatta, climax of the season for the 30 competing clubs of the Coast ARA, Hants and Dorset ARA and West of England ARA held on Wimbleball Lake reservoir in Somerset.
In the Men’s Open Senior C Coxed 4 event the A crew of Sean Cooney, Marcus Lewis, Isaac Gaston, Jack Gaston (str) and Katya Cherskova (cox) and the B crew of David Parker, George Robinson, Harry Lawton-Hurst, Kit Mersey(str) and Sam Erwin (cox) qualified comfortably for their final out of large field of competitors. The final saw the A crew stretch into a 2 length lead which they maintained over the 2000m course despite attacks from the B crew who finished second.
Both crews were doubled into the Under 18 Coxed 4 event later in the day where the A crew suffered a collision on the start line giving the B crew and a Bideford AAC crew a 2 length lead over the rest of the field. With the A crew fighting to get into 3rd place it looked like the B crew would share bragging rights for the day, but with 500 metres to go they stormed into second place with a dazzling display of power rowing slashing the A crew lead to just a length . They sustained their push and, in one of the most exciting races of the day, caught the B crew on the line to win their second race.
In the Men’s U17 Single sculls Richard Quinn carried the flag for Christchurch and from being four lengths down at the halfway point had relentlessly hauled in the Plymouth sculler with 500 metres to go. With a well-timed move another concerted attack took him clear of his foe, to win by three lengths.
All of these results went towards Christchurch winning the overall point title for the day in the Open events.
On the Sunday with a course of 1000m, crews up to J16 competed mainly in single, double and coxed quadruple sculls. A large entry from Christchurch saw a number of placed finishes but a win was proving elusive. Charlie Ranson, having qualified for the J14 final stormed out to a big lead over his nearest rival from Dart-Totnes and though threatened by a determined attack from the pack in the closing stages, held on and took Christchurch’s 4th win of the weekend completing a haul of 12 Gold medals.
Premier event, the Men’s Senior 4 Championship for the coveted Bideford Bowl was won by defending holders Bexhill RC with Itchen Imperial in second place, Greenbank Falmouth third.