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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.

Juniors at National Championships 2018

Durham ARC’s Juniors squad had a successful weekend at Nottingham’s National Watersports Centre for the 2018 British Rowing Junior Championships on July 20th to 22nd. The club entered for the omnium in the girls J14 single sculls and in the J14 girls coxed quad on Friday, and in the J16 and J18 boys’ single sculls on Saturday as well as in a composite crew with Tyne ARC in the J15 girls’ coxed quad.

Overall 1379 junior rowers from clubs across the UK took part over the three days, starting with 167 singles and 107 doubles in an omnium competition for J14 scullers on Friday, with skills exercises including hands off at the catch, 360 degree spin, standing rigger dips, sequencing, roll ups and back down stop, before finishing with a race over 500 metres. Saturday and Sunday were reserved for time trials, semi-finals and finals for the J15 to J18 competitors.

The best performance from DARC came from Adam Morris (above) who clinched 7th position in Saturday’s time trial with a time of 5.50.6 for the 1500 metres to go into Sunday’s semi-finals of the J16 single sculls. With an excellent scull Adam completed the 2km semi-final in 8.17.8, holding off his opponent from George Watson’s College to take second place and secure a place in the A final in which he went on to finish 6th overall.

The J14 girls coxed quad of Georgia Abbott, Ruby Coe, Niamh Lang and Amy Slater, coxed by Libby Morris, finished 28th out of 36 entries in Friday morning’s 1000 metre time trial, qualifying them for the E final. Much of the day was then devoted to the omnium in which each crew member took part individually in a single, before they combined again for the 4x+ finals in which a 2nd place finish in the E final ranked them 26th overall.

On Saturday Aidan Crilley finished 37th in the J18 1x time trial but failed to qualify for the finals. Ella Sampson and Madlyn Elmer competed in a DARC/Tyne ARC composite J15 girls’ coxed quad where 18th position in the time trial gave them a place in the C final in which they went on to finish 3rd (15th overall) with a time of 8.29.82 for the 2000 metre course.

A complete list of results and an event report can be found on the Junior Championships website.

Masters miss out at Henley

Durham ARC’s Masters entered 8 events at Henley Masters Regatta on July 13th and 14th but returned empty handed despite some close races.

The closest came in only the third race on Friday morning when the Women’s Masters C eight (Jacki Patrickson, Ray Dominy, Sarah Rutter, Gabrielle Moore, Kate Sowden, Heather Tosley, Helen Adair, Clare Woodward and cox Nigel van Zwanenberg), was drawn against Putney Town in their heat, but despite drafting in reinforcements from the senior squad the outcome over the 1000 metre course was victory for Putney by a margin of only 2 feet.

In the other Friday races the MasE quad lost in their heat against Norwich by 1.75 lengths, the MasF coxed four lost in the semi-final against Grosvenor RC from Chester by 2 lengths and David Muse went down by 2.5 lengths against a Leicester opponent in the heat of the MasB single sculls.

On Saturday Kim Forster was beaten by 3 lengths by her Milton Keynes opponent in the semi-final of the Women’s MasC single, while Andy Jaggard, having progressed through the heat of the MasG single sculls against Grosvenor, came up against an old adversary from Poplar in the final and went down by 1.25 lengths. In the very next race Joyce Collett, making her first appearance at Henley, went down by 1 length against strong opposition from Tideway Scullers in the final of the WMasG single. Lastly the MasG double was beaten in the final by 2 lengths by Dart Totnes.

The full list of results can be found on the Henley Masters website.

Adult Sunday Sessions

Durham ARC offers Sunday community rowing sessions for adults who have taken part in Learn to Row courses or the Allcomers Regatta. The aim of the sessions is to impove on the skills you have learnt and to develop them with the end goal of progressing to join squads within the club.

Sessions take place each Sunday between 2pm and 3.30pm.  Attendance is available to club members within their subscription and is also available on a per sesson basis to non-members  upon payment of £5 per session.

If you would like to join the sessions or require further information please email Beth Holmes at beth1411@googlemail.com.

Hot work for Allcomers

With competition from the World Cup final and Wimbledon to contend with as well as 25-degree temperatures 14 teams ventured forth for this year’s Allcomers Regatta, a fun event for crews new to rowing. A prompt start at 11am enabled the scheduled 26 races over a 400-metre course to be completed by 3.30pm and medals presented to winners and runners-up in the men’s, women’s and mixed divisions just in time for the 4pm kick-off between France and Croatia which was shown in the bar, rounding off a very enjoyable day for competitors, volunteers and spectators.

Winning their 3 races It’ll be Oar Right when we Finish narrowly held off Blazin’ Paddles VI in their final race to win the men’s competition, while Red Hot Rowers were the women’s winners with 4 wins, with GCSE Music runners-up with 3. In the mixed category The Funny Bones took the honours, holding off Usain Boat in the final race of the day to take a maximum 4 points while Absolutely Oarsome took second place with 3.

More photos on our facebook page.

For those wishing to hone their new found skills the club is running Learn to Row courses starting on Tuesday July 17th at 10am, Friday 27th at 6.30pm and Sunday 29th at 4pm. Details are on  the Explore Rowing page.

We also offer Adult Sunday sessions at a cost of £5 per session for non-members.

Learn to Row courses

Summer Learn to Row courses for adults and juniors are available on the following dates –

Adult courses
Tuesdays commencing 17th July 10.00am – 12.00pm

Fridays 27th July – 14th September 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Sundays 29th July – 16th September 4.00pm – 6.00pm

Courses are of 8 weeks duration and the cost of £95 includes a British Rowing handbook.

Junior course

A 5-day course for beginners aimed at young people aged 11 – 15 will take place from Monday 23rd July to  Friday 27th July, between 9.00am and 11.00am each day. The cost is £65.

Further details and application forms can be found on https://www.durham-arc.org.uk/thinking-of-rowing/explore-rowing/

Senior Women inspire at Henley

After victory at Durham Regatta two weeks ago the Senior Women’s squad went to Henley Women’s Regatta this weekend (June 22nd and 23rd), representing the club proudly and inspiring others in the Aspirational coxless quad, with Chloe Readman-Bell, Gabrielle Maxfield, Rachael O’Connor and Beth Holmes putting in a strong performance over the 1500 metre course to qualify from Friday’s time trial and progress to the next round the following day, where they were drawn against strong opposition from Molesey Boat Club who completed the course in 5m 28.47s, and despite performing well were unable to make further progress in the competition.

Footage of the race is at 16.36 on the HWR YouTube channel . The Regatta is the first of three to be staged on the Thames at Henley each summer, the others being Henley Royal Regatta and Henley Masters Regatta.

Henley Women’s Regatta first took place in 1988 in response to the absence at the time of events for women at Henley Royal Regatta. It continues to gain in popularity, attracting entries from all over the UK and overseas.

Coached by Phill Tully the squad plans to return next year. If you are interested in joining them please get in touch with the club captain by emailing captain@durham-arc.org.uk

Allcomers Regatta, July 15th 2018

Our next event is the Allcomers Regatta on Sunday 15th July. To date we have 14 entries but can still take more. Crews will require coaches, so if anyone is willing to take on a crew to coach please let us know. It promises to be an exciting day.

It is also a great opportunity to raise funds for the club. We would like to run a raffle and auction at the Allcomers Regatta as this has been very successful in the past, so please also get in touch if you are able to provide a raffle prize. Auction / raffle prizes could be items, experiences or promises. Examples from the past have been a break in a members holiday cottage, golf lesson with a pro, driving lessons, spa day etc.

If you have a business or a business contact or would be willing to donate something please let us know via allcomers@durham-arc.org.uk.

Entry forms, poster and details of how to enter are on the Allcomers page. The closing date is July 4th.