Sunday saw some good performances at Sudbury Regatta from crews across all of the club’s squads, on a day which began cloudy and overcast, later turned into blistering sunshine, torrential rain, thunder, lightning, and finally a beautiful late afternoon and evening! Thunder and lightning saw racing suspended for a couple of divisions for safety reasons, leaving Cantabs members huddling under the club gazebo to stay dry.
Sudbury Regatta is renowned as a short but challenging course which has a notorious long bend followed by a very short straight. This means that even more experienced crews struggle, with some losing a lot of time by struggling with steering or by completely ‘crashing out’ somewhere along the bend. The Cantabs juniors coped admirably with the challenge of steering on an unfamiliar river with a challenging bend, and put in some good performances.
Zara Parr and Mia Beauchamp had a good race in the W.MJ15A.2x, beating Maidstone Invicta and Gravesend, but unfortunately losing the final to Sudbury RC, who are much more familiar with negotiating the course’s bend. There were also entries in doubles from other squads, with Alice Brownjohn and Emma Dalrymple from the Senior Women’s Squad winning W.IM3.2x despite a boat stopping crab off the start of the final against Sudbury. There was also success for Cecile Jacklin and David Richardson in the Mx.MasDE.2x, winning this event after comprehensive victories over Norwich and Lea.
Millie Perrin raced with Phil Gunning in Mx.IM1.2x though were beaten by Leicester after Phil took an interesting line along the course! There were also some Cantabs parent and child crews in action, with Paolo and Lucio Cicolecchia and Garry and Harry O’Shea contesting this event. Unfortunately, it seemed that most of the junior halves of their opposition were much bigger than Paolo and Harry, resulting in both Cantabs crews losing to Maidstone Invicta duos who went on to race each other in the final.
There were 3 Cantabs wins in single sculling events: Cecile Jacklin added to her win in the mixed 2x with a win in W.MasDE.1x after beating scullers from Gravesend and Lea. Hills Road rower Shaun Parren beat scullers from York, Lea and Earith to win IM3.1x. And Fiona Collins-Taylor won W.NOV.1x in a Cantabs vs Cantabs final against Bailee Stratton, which saw Bailee’s laser focus on trying to beat her squad mate take a little focus away from her steering!
The final Cantabs race of the day was that of the traditional Senior Men and Senior Women’s Squads’ mixed 8+. The eights races take place only over the straight part of the course, making it just a 350m effort, taking around 1 minute to race. Millie Perrin, Ellie Darlington, Richard Chambers, Guy Fiddian, Jon McCree-Grey, Andrew Marsden, Alice Brownjohn and Bailee Stratton were steered to victory by Callum Mantell in the first round against Sudbury RC despite an uncomfortable row! The second round fortunately saw the crew execute a better race against a Molesey/Vesta/Edinburgh University composite, expected to be their toughest opposition, leaving them to tussle it out with Lea in the final which Cantabs won by 3/4L, in the process matching the time of Molesey’s winning men’s 8+ from the division before.
Many thanks to Gary and Oli for trailering at the weekend, and to Sudbury for a fun regatta. Full results may be found here.