Monthly Archives: August 2018

Successful weekend at Sculling Festival

Durham ARC had three entries in the 2018 British Rowing Sculling Festival which took place in sometimes challenging conditions at Nottingham over the weekend of August 18th and 19th. The festival is a fun and competitive event that challenges a sculler’s technical skills, manoeuvrability and competency, and is run as an omnium with points from individual events contributing towards the overall rankings.

Hope Cessford was second fastest overall in the Women’s U23 category in the Long Distance time trial over 3.8km (2 x 1900m) in 17.58.105, Rachael O’Connor representing Durham University BC finished in 22.37.037 in the WU23, and Grace Stewart-Piercy 22.46.027 in the WJ18. In the 250m time trial Hope was the fastest woman overall in 1.00.000, Rachael  clocked 1.11.000 and Grace 1.17.000. Time trial results for all competitors are listed for 3.8km and 250m

Side by side races took place on Sunday, with scullers being placed in finals A to F according to their time trial performance. The schedule was revised and races shortened to 500 metres because of the conditions. Hope was the best placed from DARC, coming 4th in the A final in a time of 1.50.9, Rachael was 4th in the E final and Grace 4th in the F final. Race results are availabe here.

After the completion of 10 exercises over the 2 days the overall points placings were as follows –
Hope Cessford 2nd in Women’s U23
Rachael O’Connor 11th in Women’s U23
Grace Stewart-Piercy 9th in Women’s  J18

For full results listings in each category see U23 and J18.

Photo by Drew Smith Photography

James in Henley Ladies Plate final

Former DARC junior James Snowball, now in his second year at Oxford Brookes University, followed up his success at BUCS last year by reaching the final of the Ladies’ Plate at Henley Royal Regatta in July.

James rowed at bow for the Oxford Brookes and Edinburgh University composite eight, beating Cantabrigian and Leander in the quarter-final and semi-final, before going down in the final against the Brookes first eight who retained the trophy for a seond year, setting a new course record in the process, the winners receiving their trophies from Olympic Gold Medallist and Oxford Brookes University Chancellor Katherine Grainger.

There is YouTube footage of the semi-final against Leander and of the Brookes v Brookes final.

Touring on the Tees

For the past 3 years Tees Rowing Club’s recreational rowers (or WRecks as they like to be called) have invited members of Durham ARC to join them for a row on the River Tees to Yarm and back, a fixture which is gaining in popularity each year. Given the fine condtions this summer it’s not difficult to see why touring is such an enjoyable experience.

Exchange visits between the recreational rowers from Tees and DARC started 6 years ago following the introduction by British Rowing of the Explore Rowing movement and then the Explore Series, and the relationship has since flourished to include the wider masters squad as well as  members of other clubs who row during the daytime.

Coordinated by Len Small from Tees the day is also a social occasion with rowers returning to a BBQ lunch prepared by the Tees members. This year in addition to the 74 taking part in the 25km return trip from the River Tees Watersports Centre to the railway viaduct at Yarm, numbers were swelled by launch drivers, volunteers and supporters, with over 100 attending the BBQ.

In previous years Tees have been able to offer their own boats for use by visitors, thus avoiding the need for trailering,  but with Increased interest from their own members this year visitors were recommended to bring their own boats, a move that has generated interest from those who like to use more familiar equipment. Seventeen rowers from DARC and four from Hexham therefore arrived at Stockton on Tuesday August 7th, with five boats from Durham and one from Hexham, ready to set off, and after a safety briefing the tour got underway at 9.30am.

The DARC contingent included George and Helen Adair, Heather Hirst and Nicola Field in a coxless quad, Kalpana Ganatra, Alison Shepherd, Gene Dobson, Paddy Deans and Caroline Scholl in a coxed quad, and Dave Green, Colin Lawson, Vaughan Gordon, Linda James and Elizabeth Bostock in a second coxed quad. Andrew and Christine Fisk followed in a double with Peter Fisk in a single scull.

All completed the tour safely after taking turns to land at the pontoon at Yarm School for a short break at the halfway point, arriving back at the River Tees Watersports Centre to enjoy the lunch and post event company.

We look forward to continuing to enhance the status of rowing tours and challenges in future, following the cancellation of this year’s Great Tyne Row and a fall in the number of entries for the River Wear Tour.

Tours are increasing in popularity in other regions with the first Explore the Broads tour, attended by Paddy,  taking place in Norfolk and Suffolk in June and the 25th anniversary British Rowing Tour on the Upper Thames due to set off at the end of August.

Durham hosts August Explore Series

Durham ARC hosted the sixth round of the Explore Series on Sunday August 5th 2018, welcoming crews representing clubs from across the Northern region to race over a 250 metre course in this popular competition for novice rowers, now in its 7th season.

DARC fielded entries in the open and women’s competitions, taking on opposition from Hexham, Tees, Tynemouth, Tyne United, Tyne ARC and Berwick in a series of round robin races using the stable Explore fours, this being the first sweep-oar round of this year’s league.

The open crew of Andrew, Christine, Gerry and Stewart, coxed by Brian Freeman, won two of their 4 races, while Linda, Denise, Gillian, Margaret and Maureen, coxed by Dave Green, won one out of 3 in the women’s league.

The only incident of note came in the very first race when a restart was required following a collision between the 2 leading crews, the aptly named Barcing Mad from Berwick ARC and Wreckless from Tees RC.

After completing 16 races victory in the open league was shared between Barcing Mad and Tynemouth Buoys with 3 wins each, while Tyne of your Life, representing Tyne ARC and TURC Ducks from Tyne United fought it out in the women’s league, each winning 2 of their races. Berwick thus retain top spot in the open series and Tyne United stay top in the women’s overall, with two rounds remaining at Hexham on September 2nd and Tyne ARC on October 7th. New teams are welcome to join the competition. Entry conditions can be found on the Northern Rowing website.

More photos on facebook.

Fine weather meant we could take advantage of the marquee for outdoor refreshments with drinks and plentiful supplies of cakes and bacon sandwiches available throughout the afternoon for the watching spectators, with around 80 competitors and visitors being entertained by members of the club’s squad of daytime rowers. 

It has been a busy week for the daytime rowers, following on from their efforts in organising a visit to the club by 120 members of local walking groups last Tuesday lunchtime for their annual BBQ and quiz.