Monthly Archives: July 2017

Hope selected for World Championships

Hope Cessford of Durham ARC joins a squad of 34 chosen by British Rowing to represent Great Britain at the 2017 World Rowing Junior Championships taking place at Trakai, Lithuania between August 2nd and 6th. Crews were finalised following trials 2 weeks ago. Selection for the Women’s coxless four is a fantastic achievement for Hope who has been with DARC’s Juniors squad throughout her teenage years, having being identified for GB squad trials after winning the women’s single sculls at J16 level at the British Rowing Junior Championships in 2015.

Strong opposition can be expected in Lithuania with a huge entry of 752 rowers overall from 59 countries in 258 boats. The GB four of Charlotte Fennell (Marlow RC), Mary Wright (Henley RC), Hope Cessford (Durham ARC) and Flo Donald (Lea RC) is one of 17 crews from 5 continents contesting their event.

In recent years Hope has been the latest in a series of junior athletes coached to success by Gordon Beattie who counts 2016 Olympic Women’s 8+ silver medallist Jess Eddie among his former protoges.   

Now in her final year as a junior Hope had a successful 2016 rowing as a pair with Lauren Irwin, then of Chester-le-Street ARC, winning the Women’s Senior Pair at the Metropolitan Regatta at Eton Dorney and the Women’s Elite Pair at Durham Regatta (above) before their selection together to represent GB for the first time at the September 2016 World Championships in Rotterdam, where they achieved 3rd place in the B final of the Junior Women’s Pair.

Already this year Hope has represented Great Britain at an international regatta in Munich in May and at the European Junior Championships at Krefeld, Germany where Hope and Flo Donald took 5th place in the final of the Women’s Pair.

The World Championships is likely to be Hope’s final competition as a junior before going to Harvard University.

Juniors roundup 2017

Now that we’ve reached the end of regatta season, it seems like an appropriate time to attempt to summarise the numerous achievements of our juniors throughout the year. First of all, a massive well done to all junior crews who have competed at any level this year. The section is larger than ever, and also more successful, with numerous wins at regattas across the region.

The J13 girls have performed extremely well this season, with wins at York, Durham, and Durham City, in both quads and doubles of various combinations. The J13 boys, not to be outdone, have also coxed numerous events.

The J14 boys and girls have both produced strong performances in their quads, racing across the region against some intimidating opposition, such as the boys’ races against national silver medallists, in which they have come very close to beating them. The girls have also raced well at a national level, going to National Schools and National Championships, in which they came 14th out of a large entry of 42 crews.

The J15s have also performed extremely well, with multiple wins in quads, fours, and even eights, at events including Durham, York, Chester-le-Street, and Hexham. They have also been to Schools’ Head of the River, National Schools, and National Championships, at which they have produced good results. The J15 boys have also raced in a double, singles, and a composite quad with Tyne.

The J16s have done well in their eight, and in fours and quads, with wins at Talkin Tarn, and good results at other local regattas. They have also raced at Schools’ Head, and National Schools.

Last and quite possibly least (?), the J17 boys continued their long-standing tradition of coming second to St. Leonards, but did manage to get to the final of championship quads at Durham Regatta. Although exams prohibited them from going to the national regattas, they’re fairly sure they would have done well if they had gone. They also raced in a composite eight with St Leonards, seeing success with a win at Durham Regatta.

The juniors also hosted the first ever (and hopefully not the last) Junior Barbecue, inviting rowers from all clubs in Durham. Over 120 attended, and the event was highly successful. Finally, a huge thank you to all of the coaches, and the parents, who have helped us to achieve one of our most successful years ever. Hopefully we can continue this momentum next year, and get even better results.

Report by Harry Coe. Photos by Rob Coe.

BR Junior Championships 2017

The Club entered 2 crews for the British Rowing Junior Championships held at Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham on July 14th to 16th, a J14 girls’ coxed quad (pictured) and a J15 girls’ coxed quad.

This year’s Championships was the biggest ever with a record number of entries and over 1500 rowers representing 131 clubs from across the UK.

For the second year the event started on Friday with an omnium for the J14s which included tests of skills such as standing rigger dips, 360 degree turns, slalom, roll ups and emergency stops carried out in singles and doubles, as well as a time trial. The J15s and above joined the competition on Saturday with the main finals taking place on Sunday.

The J14 girls’ crew of Maddy Elmer, Freya Court, Elicia Baldwin, Hope Simpson and cox Ruby Coe finished 20th out of 42 in the time trial and qualified for the D final over 1000 metres in which they were 3rd.

The J15 girls – Catherine Musgrave, Jess Cooper, Gabby Suggett, Honor Cessford and cox Lily Sanderson were 14th out of 29 in the Saturday time trial which took them into the C final over 2000 metres where they were 2nd.

See also the BR report on  the weekend. Full results are here and there is YouTube footage from each day.

River and path reopen

Contractors appointed by the Environment Agency were on site last weekend to effect a semi-permanent repair to the sluice gate at the Corn Mill which it is hoped means the weir will do its job as well as if not better than before. The river is therefore open for use again.

More good news is that the Council has completed the repairs to the riverbank following the landslip at Pelaw Wood in 2013 that led to the closure of the riverside footpath. The path is now open again with a new tarmac surface meaning that coaches will be able to go right up to the club on the far side of the river.

Two riverside paths form part of the National Cycle Network and the Weardale Way, linking the city centre and Old Durham. The reopening is in part thanks to the lobbying and peripheral work of volunteers from the Friends of Pelaw Wood.

The history of the restoration project is charted on the Durham County Council website.

Henley Masters Regatta 2017

Durham ARC returned with 3 gold medals from 10 events entered at Henley Masters Regatta, the regatta established in 1994 and hosted by Upper Thames Rowing Club held on July 7th and 8th 2017, the week after Henley Royal Regatta. Competitors travel from all over the world to compete over 1000 metres on the famous Henley reach.

Gill Prescott and Eva Rankin (Loch Lomond ARC) each won 2 gold medals, firstly in the Women’s Masters F double sculls before combining with Helen Frykman and Sherri Kline from Long Beach Rowing Association, California to win the Women’s Masters E coxless quad.

The 2x beat last year’s winners Tideway Scullers in the semi-final and Twickenham in the final. The 4x- beat an Ardingly/Gloucester composite in the quarter final, Kingston in the semi-final and Twickenham in the final.

Gill was returning a favour to the Americans who had made it possible for her to race in the Head of the Charles Regatta (HoCR) last year as they had always wanted to race at Henley. A third member of the Long Beach RA contingent, Wendy O’Brian, raced at Henley in the Women’s Masters D 2x with Antonella Corazza from SC Varese, Italy (who had also raced with Gill in the 4x- at the HoCR) and they also won their event, ensuring all of the group came away with a Henley Medal.

A third gold for Durham ARC was secured by John Lund in a Masters H 4x- composite with Quintin BC and Wallingford RC, overcoming a Cambridge (USA)/Christiania (Norway) combination in the semi-final and Upper Thames RC in the final.

In other events, the Durham Masters F eight beat Crabtree by a canvas in the semi-final but lost to Quintin in the final. The Durham/Upper Thames RC MasG 8+ also lost to Quintin in the final.

After a dead heat and rerow David Muse lost in the quarter-final of the MasB 1x by 1 foot against Twickenham. The Masters F 4+ lost to Crabtree in the quarter-final, and Andy Jaggard lost against Poplar B&D in the quarter-final of the MasG single sculls.

In their first appearance at Henley Kim Forster and Gabrielle Moore lost in the quarter-final of the WMasD 2x against Tideway Scullers, and the MasD 2x lost in the semi-final against Burton Leander.

Full results are  here.

Victor Ludorum at Talkin Tarn

The regatta season reached its conclusion in the Northern region at Talkin Tarn Regatta on July 1st. A bright and breezy day proved to be a very successful one for the Club, winning the Tarn Regatta’s inaugural Victor Ludorum award for the most successful club, for which they received a splendid new trophy sponsored by Darlington Prontaprint, along with a cash prize of £250.

Out of 44 entries spread over 3 divisions there were wins in 15 events on the buoyed 3-lane course, shortened slightly from the advertised 700 metres because of excessive weed infestation which is a perennial problem on the tarn.    

Seven wins for the Juniors included Thomas Taylor in the J14 single scull, Matthew Harrison and Dominic Crilley in the J14 double, Katie Strangward, Allanah Baldwin, Bethan Hall, Izzy Wilkinson and cox Abbie Burke in the J16 4+, Sam Taylor and Aidan Crilley in the J18 2x, and wins in the Women’s coxed quads for 2 crews – Honor Cessford, Jess Cooper, Catherine Musgrave and Gabby Suggett, coxed by Lily Sanderson, and Alannah Baldwin, Katie Strangward, Georgia Murphy and Abby Burke, coxed by Elise Sanderson.

With 3 women’s eights and 2 open eights competing there was a win for the DARC/St Leonard’s combination including Harry Coe, Aidan Crilley, Matthew Skinner, Sam Taylor, Josh Stephenson and Matthew Edge, coxed by Rebecca Jackson in the Open 8+, and for the Senior Women’s crew of Claire Adams, Kate Sowden, Ruth Hodges, Fi Ashton, Liz Law, Taya Parker, Alison Danforth and Beth Holmes, with cox from St Leonards in the Women’s 8+.

Another win for the Seniors came for Brad Knights and Elliot Kay in the Open pair. The new BR ranking system saw the Women’s double divided into 3 bands, with band 2 won by Liz Law and Taya Parker.

Andy Jaggard won the Masters G single sculls, then combined with Joyce Collett to win the Mixed Masters G double. Kim Forster and David Muse won the Mixed Masters B double, and there were wins for George Adair, David Oliver, Michael Seed and Gerry Sharpe in the Masters F four coxed by Helen Adair, and in the Masters F coxless quad.

The calendar of events in the Northern region can be found on the Northern Rowing website.