Bad weather had meant both the opening events of the 2013 Whitby rowing season were cancelled on the due dates.
However, in the rearranged programme of Abbey Gift races, that were eventually held over a period of many days, the Friendship Club took a clean sweep in all categories.
This despite not being permitted to use their state of the art ‘cleaver’ oars following a protest meeting earlier.
This did not dismay club President Mike Brown, who said: “To get a clean sweep proved the benefit of our winter training programme.
“While progress around equipment has been put on hold for another year, I am happy that sooner or later all clubs will come to recognise the benefit technology brings to developing and retaining young rowers in our sport.”
Sunday’s Pages races provided some exciting rowing, with Scarborough Rowing Club joining the fray on a sea that started benignly but finished with a swell that caused more than a few problems for rowers and coxswains alike.
Scarborough showed they will once again be a force to be reckoned with, winning the mens’ under 14 and under 21 races. The ladies’ senior race was a much closer affair between the Whitby clubs, with both crews nip and tuck approaching the pier ends.
Just as Friendship were about to unleash their customary sprint burst, however, a huge ‘crab’ put an end to their chances and Fisherlasses took advantage to just hold on to win.
The undoubted highlight of the day came in the girls’ under 18 event, in which Friendship’s crew of Morgann Russell, Amy Clarkson, Emmy Ford and Millie Storr emerged clear winners, beating opponents several years their elders in the process.
Performance director Steve Wilson was especially pleased with the result.
“These lasses have worked hard all winter and have taken on board all the coaching advice we can now offer at the club”, he said,
“To have a crew of two 14- year-olds and two 13-year-olds win the under 18 category is tremendous and bodes well for the future.
“If they had been allowed to use the cleaver oars, the winning margin would have been even greater.”
The mens’ under 23 race saw another Friendship win, this time for Luke Clarkson, Ryan Sleightholme, Ryan Lowther and James Kendrew who saw off the challenge from Scarborough with something to spare.
Turning round straight away to compete in the mens’ senior event proved too much of a test for their endurance, however, and after a close race Scarborough won by a length and a half.
“It’s something race organisers will need to consider when arranging the events timetable,” said Steve Wilson.
“You cannot expect a crew to deliver the same level of performance in back to back races, even one as strong as our lads.
“Had they been fresh I’m sure they would have won the race, but credit to Scarborough for holding them off.”
The next races are scheduled to take place on 23 June.
Abbey Gift Shop Trophy (men), Friendship 14 Fishermen 5; LUA Trophy (ladies), Friendship 8 Fishermens 6.
Boys 14-17: 1 Friendship, Pegasus, Jem Dring, Ben Betts, Jack Stuart, Nick Marsay, Luke Clarkson; 2 Fishermens, Louise, Danny Buck, Tyler Mayo, Nathan Kaz, Sam Fussey, Tracey Coverdale.
Girls’ 14-17: Friendship, Pegasus, Morgann Russell, Amy Clarkson, Bethan Pearson, Millie Storr; 2 Fishermens, Remembrance, Kirsty Kemsley, Leah Hunter, Jess Scarth, Katie Wallace, Mike Waterfield; Fishermens, Relentless, Leah Belchamber, Alice Hill, Amy Cowens, Ashleigh Myers, Matt Kendrew.
Men’s 18-24: 1 Friendship, Pegasus, Luke Clarkson, Ryan Lowther, James Kendrew, Ryan Sleightholme, Ben Betts; 2 Fishermen’s, Louise Lowther, Matt Kendrew, Lee Crabtree, Mike Waterfield, Jason Jeffreys, Arnie Wright.
Ladies’ Over 18: Friendship, Pegasus, Laura Parkin, Alison Stanforth, Rebecca Smith, Kelly Betts, Pete Betts; 2 Fishermen’s, Relentless, Yasmin Spencer, Sandra Clarke, Jordan Spencer, Kerry Brown, Matt Kendrew; 3 Fishermen’s, Louise, Donna Golding, Jess Purvis, Jo Raw, Carol Parkin, Steve Waring.
Men’s Senior: 1 Friendship, Pegasus, Mike Brown, Andy Smurthwaite, Jason Storr, Pete Betts, Grant; 2 Friendship, Eagle, Jimmy Kilpatrick, Mark Davies, Nathan Brown, Kevin Wilson, Jack Stuart.
Pages Trophy (men) Scarborough 15, Friendship 7 Fishermen 0; Tetley Cup (ladies), Fishermen 7, Friendship 6, Scarborough 2.
Boys’ U14: Fortunes Cup, 1 Scarborough, Edward Brown, Joe Gibson, Finlay Dennis, Tyler Whitton, Joseph McLaren, Bob Hewitt; 2 Fishermen’s, JC, Jack Buck, Aidan Doherty, Jack Harper, Tommy Brown, Steve Waring; 3 Friendship, Cholmley, Josh Hellann, Mathew Tiplady, Josh Marshall, Daniel Fraser, Amy Clarkson.
Girls’ U14: Bill Croke Shield, 1 Scarborough, William Sheader, Laura Dixon, Hattie Gibson, Helena MacAleese, Annie Marshall, Donna Gibson; 2 Friendship, Pegasus, Sophie Brown, Millie Storr, Emily Ford, Brooke Eddon, Morgan Russell; 3 Fishermen’s, Resolution, Abigail Roe-Humble, Ruth Garbutt, Indi Golding, Naomi Garbutt, Steve Humble.
Men’s U23: 1 Friendship, Pegasus, Luke Clarkson, Ryan Lowther, James Kendrew, Ryan Sleightholme, Benn Betts; 2 Scarborough, William Sheader, Jack Anderson, Sam Woodward, Matthew Young, Josh Barnes, Joe Gibson; 3 Scarborough, Edward Brown, Olly Mallonie, Ben Martin, Will Anderson, Connor Ward, Cath McIntyre.
Men’s U21: 1 Scarborough, William Sheader, Jack Anderson, Sam Woodward, Matthew Young, Josh Barnes, Joe Gibson; 2 Scarborough, Edward Brown, Brad Miller, Matthew Metcalfe, Will Gibson, Joe Marshall, Bob Hewitt; 3 Friendship, Pegasus, Jem Dring, Ben Betts, Jack Stewart, Nick Marsay, Luke Clarkson.
Ladies’ Junior: Friendship, Pegasus, Morgan Russell, Amy Clarkson, Emily Ford, Millie Storr, Kelly Betts; 2 Fishermen’s, Louise L, Kirsty Kemsley, Leah Hunter, Jess Scarth, Katie Wallis, Matthew Kendrew; 3 Scarborough, Edward Brown, Ellen Corcoran, Lucy Woodward, Zoe Aldcroft, Beth Rowley, Bob Hewitt.
Ladies’ Senior: 1 Fishermen’s, Louise L, Yasmin Spencer, Sandra Clarke, Jordan Spencer, Kerry Brown, Steve Waring; 2 Friendship, Pegasus, Laura Parkin, Jaclyn Green, Rebecca Smith, Kelly Betts, Morgann Russell; 3 Scarborough, William Sheader, Cath, Donna Gibson, Bridget Marshall, Beth Rowley, James Purdey.
Men’s Senior: Brian Gatenby Trophy, 1 Scarborough, William Sheader, Simon Taylor, Bob Hewitt, Guy Woodward, Darren Sharpe, Will Anderson; 2 Friendship, Pegasus, Luke Clarkson, Ryan Lowther, James Kendrew, Ryan Sleightholme, Ben Betts; 3 Scarborough, Edward Brown, Jack Anderson, Sam Woodward, Matthew Young, Josh Barns, Joe Gibson.