West Norfolk Rowing Club duo just pipped to a podium place at Ely
West Norfolk Rowing Club had a good day’s racing at Ely Head at their nearest neighbouring club.
Grateful for calm, clear conditions, junior and adult crews competed in several time-trial divisions along the River Great Ouse.
The first division saw 69 crews racing a 3km course.
West Norfolk’s crew of Archie Bell, 18, and Zach Grant, 15, were placed in the open double category, and finished fourth in a hotly-contested class of established men’s crews, with a good time of 14 mins 46 secs.
Abi-Lou Page, 15, raced the 3km in a single scull in the W.J16.1x class.
This is a tough distance for a junior on their own, but she finished valiantly in 17 mins 56 secs, cheered down the home straight by supporters.
The mixed masters crew of Liz Palmer and Simon Grapes were a late pairing for West Norfolk in the double sculls but rowed well together, finishing the 3km course in 15 mins 13 secs.
The open men’s coxless quad crew required a last minute substitution, and the experienced Terry Mansfield took the spare seat with Theo Bailey, Owen Lewis and Phil Holden.
They had a great run in the first race, completing the 3km in a very respectable time of 13 m 18 s to finish ninth fastest overall in the division.
The men’s coxless quad then made one crew swap and headed out again for the second division with Theo Bailey, Phil Holden, Owen Lewis and Steve Venables, rowing back up to the start to race over the 5km course.
West Norfolk’s Matt Parle, racing an Op.2x RAF crew with Andy May, also rowed twice, taking on the 3km and 5km courses in the first and third divisions.
They had times of 13:30 and 23:22 respectively to finish third in the category in each race.
Isle of Ely RC provided an enjoyable, relaxed race atmosphere with lots of familiar faces and catching up over refreshments after the racing.
Even with the short distance to travel home, however, the trailer and boats arrived back at West Norfolk at dusk, a telling sign of winter racing to come.
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More by this authorGreg Plummer