[O]n Sunday 30th April 2017 a group of scullers from the Portinscale-based Lakeland Rowing Club celebrated a Club record number of entries and came away with triumphant trio of wins at the Chester-Le-Street Regatta.
The 4:00am start did not deter the scullers from competing. With the help of Paul and Linda Mills the boats were towed and safely unloaded for the competitors to rig up and prepare to race at 07:30am!. Izzy Greenwood and Kim Sunley of Cockermouth School were the first members of of the club to scull the 900m course in a double, however, they were unsuccessful due to technical difficulties when their stroke seat jammed just after the start . Undeterred Kim and Izzy showed great determination for the club as they battled on rowing right up until the finish.
Lakeland RCs next entry was the Women’s Junior Coxless Quad which was bow-steered with ease by Daniela Jones, Stroked by Lauren Strong and engined on by 2 and 3, also known as Stephanie Mills and Pippa Atkinson (all from Keswick School). Although the quad did not pass into the finals they placed strongly at 3rd.
Out of the record breaking 10 entries (7 junior crews and 3 Seniors crews) entered into the Chester-Le-Street Regatta, 6 crews were finalists, including the Junior 18 Boys coxless quad. The quad was Bow-steered really well by Ben Holmes, Robert Spedding, Tom Hind and stroked by Tom Suddaby (all Keswick School students) who were narrowly beaten by an experienced crew from QEH Hexham. The Lakeland RC J18 crew was later complimented by many other crews and coaches for the way they sculled and steered their way down the 700m tight twisty course so confidently.
Connor Faulder was the only Lakeland RC junior to compete in a single scull at this event, and proved to be a strong, competitive sculler. Although he didn’t win his race he provided a very respectable race with fantastic steering of the bendy course and in windy conditions.
Another finalist crew were the Junior Women’s Coxed quad which was sculled by juniors; Lauren Strong at bow , Pippa Atkinson, Stephanie Mills and Catherine Spedding at stroke , Coxed by Daniela Jones.
Daniela Jones and Pippa Atkinson brought the club massive pride as they were the first ever junior crew from Lakeland Rowing Club to win a British Rowing Race and trophy. They smashed the semi-finals heat ended with a rather spectacular crash into another competing boat right on the finish, but no damage was done and they were safe to race again in the finals. Cox Daniela, said the crew all worked hard on their timing during the race and the support from the crowd on the bank was so encouraging.” Pippa agreed and said “It was fun and the atmosphere was so overwhelming”. In the finals Daniela and Pippa won their final race with a boat length between them and their opponent.
The other two crews that brought home winning titles were the Masters Single scull, incredibly well by coach Nick Cowan, and Women’s Masters Coxless Quad again sculled very smoothly by Sam Ayers (Bow steer), Alex Morgan, Victoria Lancaster and Julia McCumiskey (stroke), who also won the club’s first ever British Rowing Senior Women’s crew event and trophy.
Overall the event was a huge success for the club, and it allowed the scullers to aim high for their next race at the Hexham RC Regatta on Saturday June 3rd where they are aiming for another Club record entry and bring home more wins and trophies!
The club, which is based and supported by Derwent Water Marina, Portinscale,