A new chapter beckons for Friendship rowers

Amy Clarkson of the Friendship Rowing Club girls' under 15 crew
Amy Clarkson of the Friendship Rowing Club girls' under 15 crew
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A new chapter has started at Whitby’s Friendship Rowing Club.

Long-standing captain John Eglon stood down at the AGM and his place has been taken by club stalwart Luke Clarkson, with local entrepreneur Pete Betts as vice-captain.

Keiran Eglon-Davies and Matthew Clarkson of the Friendship Rowing Club boys' under 14 crew

Keiran Eglon-Davies and Matthew Clarkson of the Friendship Rowing Club boys' under 14 crew

In a moving speech to the meeting, Eglon thanked everyone for their support and wished the club well for the future.

“After a total of 15 years as captain, it’s time to hand over,” he said.

“It will also give me more time to devote to my personal fitness programme, and to looking after my allotment, both of which I felt took a back seat last summer.

“The club is in fine shape and poised to do even better this coming season.”

The new captain was equally optimistic. Winter training is well under way with good numbers”, he explained, “whereas before we were just lifting heavy weights around with no real purpose, we are now developing sport-specific muscle groups so that we can produce athletes instead of body-builders”.

The meeting also approved the appointment of veteran oarsman Richard Green as club coaching co-ordinator, with Kelly Betts as assistant coach.

“Things are going well,” said Green, “and it’s particularly good to see so many young rowers coming down as well as a few new faces.”

Steve Wilson remains as performance director, helped by newcomer Ian Robertshaw as performance analyst.

“Ian recently moved into the area,” said Wilson, “and turned up out of the blue offering to help.

“He does have an impressive background in the wider sporting arena.

“It’s one thing testing people regularly as we do, but we can now look at the results in a more meaningful manner.”

The club enjoys an air conditioned gym, nine rowing machines, two SkiErg machines and a full range of free weights available. Training sessions are on Monday and Thursday nights at the Friendship club.

Under 16s start at 5.30pm, and adults at 6pm.

New members are welcome, especially those with no previous rowing experience.