NEWPORT REGATTA WEEKEND. Saturday, 18th June & Sunday, 19th June, 2016.

Saturday, 18th June & Sunday, 19th June, 2016.

Ryde Rowing Club, sponsored by Wightlink IW Ferries, had their best results of the season to date over the weekend of 18th and 19th June when they competed at Island neighbors Newport Rowing Club – at their Annual Regatta’s on the River Medina – where the three boat racing with no racing turn presented a different challenge to the usual multi-lane with racing turn format.

On the Saturday, in the Fours racing, three of the Clubs four crews that were entered fought their way through to their respective finals – the only crew missing out being the Clubs newly promoted Ladies Junior Four of Kristy Newman, Lisa Murphy, Ayesha Russell and Catherine Murphy with Mick Jenner coxing who narrowly lost out in the semi-final. The Clubs remaining three crews raced one after the other in their respective finals – achieving a hat trick of wins.

First to go were the Men’s Senior Four of Joe Evans-Murray, Henry Gove, Ollie Gove and Adam Edwards, coxed by Becca Nigh – who were running late and had to race to the start and very nearly missed the race. This appeared to have ruined their chances as rivals and race favorites BTC forged ahead off the start – but the Ryde crew stayed in touch and in a blistering finish rowed through BTC to win by half a length – to claim Ryde’s First Senior Fours win since their Open South Coast Senior Championship win in 2012.

In the very next race it was the turn of the Clubs Novice Ladies Four of Abi Locke, Julie Cole, Karen Crook and Kate Whitehurst with Allen Evans coxing to compete in their final – and unlike the Senior Men there was no need for them to overhaul their opponents as they leapt straight into the lead which they held to the end of race to gain promotion to Coastal Junior status.

It was then the turn of the Men’s Novice Four of Dom Douglas, Jacob Redstone, Joel Smith and Joe Groves with Austin Smith coxing to race their final – and like the Ladies Novice crew they too took the lead just after the start and although challenged during the race they comfortably held of the opposition to secure Ryde’s 3rd win of the day and their promotion to Coastal junior status.

On the Sunday, in the Small Boats and Junior Regatta the club added another win – when Stephen Johnson, in a brief return to the Club from university before volunteering for three months with Raleigh International in Tanzania - romped home in the final of the Men’s Novice Sculls – with Club colleague Joel Smith finishing in 3rd place. Earlier in the closely fought semi-finals two other Ryde Novice Scullers – Nick Christopher, making his first competitive appearance for the Club for several years and James Smith, in his first competitive Novice Sculls race just failed to join their colleagues in the final. Coastal Junior Sculler, Dale Buckett finished 2nd in his final in a very close an incident packed race.

James Smith and Joel Smith also competed in a Coastal Junior Pair finishing in 2nd place in their final – but the Senior Pair of Andy Hicks and Stephen Johnson were unfortunately disqualified in their semi-final for an infringement close to the finish line as they tried to snatch victory. But there was a good performance from the Coastal Junior Ladies Pair of Lisa Murphy and Julie Cole who, racing for the first time in this boat type, finished 2nd in their semi-final.

The Club had two J14 Coastal Quads racing – the A crew of Ben Sanderson, Tye Cameron, Tom Starkey and Freya Drage with Dan Sanderson coxing and the B crew of Paddy Kearney, Austin Smith, Lyle Winfield and Harry Jones Drage with Erin McClumpha coxing – most of whom were making their racing debuts for the Club at a Hants & Dorset Regatta – and both crews performed well but failed to progress to the final. However Ben Redstone racing in a composite crew with host Club Newport made the final – finishing in 2nd place.

Austin Smith then competed in the Boys J14 Single Scull – winning his semi-final and finishing 2nd in the final.