Henley Masters Regatta brought a fantastic two days of racing for the Mortlake women with a record number of entries from the club, including 3 singles, a composite double, 3 quads and a composite 8. And great success for the women Masters racing group who marked the end to a fabulous season with 2 wins!
Racing started on the Friday, with mainly heats and some semifinals. The WMas B4x, made up of Emma Donnelly, Anna Ramsden, Kat Rolfsman and Jo Gapper, were in a draw of 9 boats and were unfortunately drawn for the initial eliminator heat in the 4th race of the day against Rob Roy. Successfully making it through that race the they joined the main quarter finals at lunchtime, racing City of Oxford. They stamped their authority on that race winning comfortably by 2 lengths. With a switch of crew member, the WMas C4x, with Emma Donnelly, Anna Ramsden, Laura Campbell and Jo Gapper then repeated their previous performance against a similarly adjusted City of Oxford crew to win the semifinal of that event.
Friday’s racing also saw Lisa Kallal through to the semi finals of WMas B1x and Joy Skipper through to the final of WMas D1x. The WMas D4x , made up of Helen Mangan, Hilary Cook, Nicola Dale and Lesley Baguley (BBL) also won their heat to make it through to the Saturday morning semifinals. Jen Bizley put up a valiant effort at WMas A1x but unfortunately lost to Wix of Deben, the eventual winner of this event.
Saturday saw Joy Skipper also race a straight final in a composite WMas E2x, unfortunately losing to an American crew. Joy also had a strong race in the final of WMas D1x, dominating the race initially only to be rowed through towards the finish, losing by just 1/2 length. Lisa Kallal was also knocked out in WMas B1x, during the semi final, to a City of Bristol sculler.
It was then the turn of the WMas B4x, C4x and WMas D4x, who all had finals in the afternoon, with a women’s composite 8+ race to follow afterwards. First up was the WMas C4x who battled down the course with last years winners, Eton Excelsior, to win the event by a 1/3 length. On the back of that success the crew reconfigured themselves for the WMas B4x and went onto win their event against Maidenhead. To keep the wins rolling in, the WMas D4x composite crew also had a comfortable win against Falcon and then leapt into a composite 8 to take the win in WMas C8, a great end to a very successful two days of racing.
Well done to all involved and a big thanks to those that came down to cheer on the crews from the bank!
Also worth noting that many of those who competed at Henley Masters Regatta will be travelling to Varese (Italy) in September to compete in the Masters World Championships – hopefully returning with a similar medal haul!