Nottingham Masters Yields Three Star Wins

Several Masters crews ventured North to the National Water Sports Centre (NWC) at Holme Pierrepont for Nottingham Masters’ Regatta on 27th May and the club came away with three wins. Conditions are always tough at the NWC and this year was no exception. Strong tailwinds brought the waves up causing such tricky obstacles that the race was held over the first 1000m of the course.

Winners: W Mas F2x, Mas E4+, Mas F8+

Sue Lamb reports: The Women’s F double competed in the Non- Championship D-F category against Exeter and Upton. No handicap is given for age at Non-Championship level and the opposition was a D and F crew. The Star Ladies were pleased to have crossed the finish line comfortably ahead of Exeter, after an interesting race trying to clear the sculling blades from the waives. Twice the boat speed slowed slightly due to stroke’s blade bow blade getting caught on the water, and Exeter made a little ground, but the many kms of square blade paddling practice on home water helped the Star crew to tap down more and push on to finish in first place.

Dom Hawes reports: The Mens’ E4+ faced off against Nottingham and York, both strong crews with a string of high-level wins behind them including Henley Masters, Nottingham City 2017 and National Masters. A solid start gave our crew a half-length advantage after barely 10 strokes and then quickly settled into a long stride at 32/33, which added steadily to its lead. Nottingham fared better than York ok the day and pressed our men hard at 400m and again at 850m. But, with plenty in the tank Star pushed home its advantage taking the win in a time of 03.30.5, which was the fastest 4+ of the day.

The Men’s F8+ was pitted against Peterborough and the result was certainly not a foregone conclusion. Star’s new line-up F8 hadn’t enjoyed too much water time before the regatta and, with a last-minute injury sub kindly provided by Nottingham it was effectively a scratch-crew. Peterborough got the better of the start, but our crew ground out a strong enough lead in near surf conditions to secure a well-earned win.

Other Star reports provided by racers

Report on W Mas D/E 8+
Sue Lamb reports: Unfortunately, due to 2 crew changes the day before the race, this crew went on the water without a full crew practice. But good crew spirit held up, determined to have the best race possible with a very competent cox from the Star Juniors. The crew changes meant the crew should have moved up to E from D, but a category change was not permitted for the race so Star raced York City (E), Nottingham (D), Bradford Amateur (D), and Hollingworth Lake (D). York went off 7 seconds ahead of the D crews and stormed home in a time of 3.43. The Star crew had a good start in the calmer waters but struggled as the water became choppy, not conditions the Star crew was used to but battled on to finish 4th out of the 5 crews, ahead of Hollingworth Lake. The crew all commented that the rough water experience was invaluable and hopefully useful at other venues like Tideway.

Masters Women take to Peterborough Summer

The Masters Women’s Squad optimistically entered two WMas D coxed fours, two WMas E coxed fours, a WMas D eight and a WMas E double scull at Peterborough Summer Regatta weekend.This was to have been our grand finale or racing, with participation from as many squad members as possible. We were however frustrated in our purpose; the eight was rejected due to lack of competition, two crews had to scratch due to unforeseen circumstances, and – most disappointing of all, Peterborough decided not to run any Masters Women’s Fours events on the Sunday. The Sunday fours were instead reallocated to the Senior Women’s 4+ events. Definitely not what we had hoped for from the season finale.
Over the Saturday 1000m course, our WMas E4+ of Sue Lamb, Janet Wiliams, Liz Appleton and Kim Taylor, coxed by Jo French (on her maiden race in the cox’s seat) were very fortunate to have a masters category race, and competed in the WMas D/E 4+ event. They raced powerfully, putting the Peterborough crew well behind them, but were not fast enough to beat the mighty Henley Masters winners from Milton Keynes. A valiant effort.
Over the Sunday 500m course, we fielded a WMas D4+ (Jane Pooley, Rhonda Lawrence, Nicola White and Sue Davis, coxed by coach Jack Pooley’’s girlfriend Isobel)  and a WMas E4+ (Liz Appleton, Jo French, Alison Winder and Janet Williams, coxed by Kat Morrell). Having been allocated to the Senior Women’s events, these crews faced competing against much younger athletes instead of their masters age groups. Normally we would not agree do this, but on this occasion decided that we would go for it. Both crews were game, but sadly neither was able to overcome the youngsters. The WMas E4+ were however lucky to have WMas crew from Poplar Blackwall in their race, whom they beat by some 3 lengths. “

Master Squads Storm Sudbury

The Masters Men and Women took a small but select contingent to Sudbury Regatta on Saturday 5th August. Enjoying both the very best and the very worst of British summer weather, the group gained two wins from three events, including a long over-due win for some of the Masters Women. The day was especially exciting for Clive Thompson, who coxed those two winning crews –  his first time competing as a cox since 1974.

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