Christchurch Rowing Club Women’s section took a group to the British Indoor Rowing Championships on Saturday and returned with 4 medals including two Golds.
The event brings together some of Britain’s best rowers as well as top athletes from other disciplines, racing over the standard Olympic distance of 2000m and a sprint distance of 500m.
First up for Christchurch, Julia Fabrizi in the Masters 55-59 category 2000m. Julia medalled in this event last year and has been working very hard to improve on that performance. Julia went off like a train opening up a 5 second lead over the first 500m and, despite tying up a little in the final 500m, won Gold by an impressive margin of over 30 seconds.
Julia was followed by a number of the club’s women racing, not only at their first British Championships, but their first indoor event at any level.
Bex Powell (representing British Army) M30-39 5th
Emma Fairclough M40-49 – 14th
Julie Eddicott Lightweight M50-54 – 4th
Fleur Howcroft Under 23 – 14th
Moving on to the sprint events, with some athletes preferring to specialize over the shorter distance and margins generally tighter anyway, Julia Fabrizi knew she had a tougher job on her hands to medal at this event, and so it was with Julia leaving it to the final 100m to overhaul her main opponent and take Gold by a second.
In the Women’s Lightweight Masters 50-54 Julie Eddicott held on to secure a Bronze medal just 1 second ahead of her club mate Alli Fortt. In the Masters 40-49 event, Emma Fairclough finished 7th.
The later part of the day is left to the 4km relay. The most exciting of the races where spectators really get behind the rowers in this team event. Bex Powell, in the British Army Women’s team, was over 6 seconds down on the silver medal position at the halfway mark rowing back into contention over the second half only to miss out by a tantalizing 0.3 of a second.