Durham ARCs Roger Stainforth returned with a gold medal from the British Rowing Indoor Championships after winning the Masters 70-74 Men’s 2000 metres race at the Lea Valley VeloPark on Saturday December 9th, his fourth victory in that age group since the Championships moved to the London Olympic Velodrome in February 2015.
Although 10 seconds shy of the British record of 7.08.7 which he set at the 2015 Championships and still holds, Roger’s winning time of 7min 18.7sec was his fastest of the season so far, building on his successes in the North East Indoor Championships (7.21.5) and Welsh Indoor Championships (7.23.7) during November.
After a brief sortie into rowing on water last year, when he teamed up with Martyn Calkin to win the Masters F double sculls at the British Rowing Masters Regatta at Holme Pierrepont, Roger is again concentrating on the indoor discipline at which he specialises. Through his achievements at indoor rowing he is an inspiration to many, with a further success coming in September this year as a member of the team who set a World Record for the 100km relay for rowers aged over 70.
With British Rowing promoting greater participation in indoor rowing the sell-out Championships at the Velodrome on Saturday was the biggest yet, with 2100 competitors taking part in 72 different races over the day, using 80 Concept2 ergometers, and GB athletes competing alongside rowing club and gym members from around the country.
The focus of media attention was a first appearance by 5-times Olympic Cycling gold medallist Sir Bradley Wiggins, taking part in the Men’s Open 2km race with a view to winning a place with the GB Rowing squad in time for the Tokyo Olympics, but after a slight hesitation at the start his time of 6.22.5 fell short of expectations and leaves him with work to do if he is to achieve his ambition.
Results from all races